In another interview published today, Matt sat with Men’s Fitness to talk on what attracted him to the role, his appreciation of 1930s, and his secret to staying calm, cool, and collected under pressure in any of life’s tricky situations.
What were your thoughts when you first accepted this role? How excited were you?
I was really flattered that they reached out to me. I’m a huge Fitzgerald fan as almost everyone, I think. It’s intimidating to interpret his prose and to bring it onto the screen and interpret an iconic character of his. But thankfully I had Billy Ray who is just a brilliant writer and director. I’ve been a fan of his since a movie called Shattered Glass that he did I think in early 2000s, I’m not sure, for whatever reason he thought I was the right guy for the role, and it was a real honor to get to be his avatar and collaborate with him on this and help try to bring his vision to life. It’s a story that he’d been living with for a really long time, and I think he very wisely took this great structure we have now where you can take a novel and make it a 10-part series as opposed to one 2-hour open and closed film and where they open up the world and the relationships and the characters that I thought had a lot of room to grow, so I was really excited to work on it.
What do you think life would look like for you if you actually lived in the 1930s?
Well it depends. I mean it’s an incredible, it’s one of my favorite things about getting to be a part of this piece. I love any period piece but the 1930s, especially 1936 when this takes place, was an incredibly rich place around the world. You had the Spanish Civil War going on, Hitler was rising to power in Europe, you’re at the height of the Great Depression and here you are in Hollywood where business is booming, So, you know, it depends, I could be, you know, suffering through a Hooverville in the height of the Great Depression or I could be a young studio executive and business is booming. I think there is in American landscape at the time, if you’re talking about our country in particular, it was you know, really, really bipolar in terms of what your experience could be as a human being, and I think that’s something they really tried to pick up and express and show in the piece.
Check the full interview at Men’s Fitness website.