97. Jeremy Irons
Peak of Hotness: The 1980's
Best Known For: Oscar, Emmy & Tony Award winning acting legend. Star of such notable films as The French Lieutenant's Woman, Dead Ringers, Reversal of Fortune and, of course, The Lion King.
For this installment, I sought help from my friend Joel. We met a little over a year ago and have a shared passion for classic cinema, although you wouldn't know it from the way we seem to disagree about nearly everything. He's not really into Jeremy Irons in the same way I am, but he has a thing for respectable British thespians--his favorite actor is Richard Burton--so I forced him to help me out. Plus, he's incredibly smart and witty, which never hurts. I've tried to force him to get a blog or a Twitter but no go. One of these days he'll share his snark with the world! But until that day, here he is on my blog.
Dame James: When did you first encounter Jeremy and when did you first realize how awesome he is?
Joel: Umm, I knew the name since I can really remember but that's my creepy memory. I think the first movie that I saw with him in it prominently or at least that I noticed him in though was Damage and I was really impressed by that. So that would have to be my answer to both. This was about two and half years ago?
DJ: I'm pretty much the same way with Jeremy. He's always just sorta been there, hasn't he? I know I've known of him since at least The Lion King. But at six, I wasn't exactly interested in Jeremy Irons the person. He was just the awesome bad guy (I had a total thing for the bad guy in every Disney movie). Now, though, I'm totally like "Goddamn, Jeremy Irons is the man in that movie!"
It feels kinda weird labeling Jeremy Irons as "sexy" or "attractive" because, although he has a generally good looking appearance, he's hardly a looker. We all know the real reason I am, at least, attracted to him is because of that voice. My God, that voice! It's so rich and full and deep and British. I recently watched the miniseries version of Brideshead Revisited--ten hours of listening to him speak and I felt like I was in heaven. To modify a Nicki Minaj lyric "He just gotta talk and the panties comin' off, off." His good looks combined with that voice make Jeremy a very desirable fellow? What do you think of the voice? Does it add to his appeal for you? Also, I know you're a fan of the diction of British actors like O'Toole and Burton. How does it compare to their infamous voices?
J: I guess I didn't really connect that that was him in The Lion King but I was also never as interested as most kids were when that came out. It was never my favorite, too sappy. "Be Prepared" was a jam for me though then and it shows that he can kinda sing. He's very suave, I'd say. That'd be a good word to describe him. I don't find him attractive at all though I'd say he just stops short of being unattractive. His voice is good but I view it as more of an Alan Rickman kind of voice. They both are very distinctive and great but I can't understand how anyone would find him attractive. Maybe if he were whispering sweet nothings instead of the creepy things that he is always saying in his movies. And he admittedly chooses odd films. I feel like I need to see Dead Ringers and then I would know even more about him. He's kind of that British guy who's cultured, classy and dark with hidden secrets that women really seem to like. Kinda like Dirk Bogarde and Richard Burton before Liz got all over him. Like the kind of guys that Olivier played in the forties and thirties or dark Cary Grant. When they're trying to kill their wives.
DJ: "Be Prepared": The best homage to Nazism since the fall of the Third Reich? I am beyond obsessed with that song. I have quite a few Disney songs on my iPod and I listen to it far more than nearly any of the others. I like Jeremy's speak-sing voice and find it far more interesting than Rex Harrison's far more celebrated musical stylings.
I think you make a great point regarding the relationship between his attractiveness and the types of roles he takes. Personally, I don't think I would find him as desirable if it weren't for all of the Dead Ringers/Reversal of Fortunes/Damages in his filmography. As creepy as those roles are, they kind of define Jeremy as an actor and what he is best at. If he did a movie where he was whispering sweet nothings, I don't know if I would buy it. He's just fucking creepy and that's it. Not that that's a dealbreaker by any means.
And I know you listed all of those guys as creepers we're not supposed to find attractive, but how bad is it I found them all the sexiest (give or take Grant) in those types of roles?
So you find Jeremy suave but just short of attractive. I can live with that. And that's all I ask since I made you do this against your will. Any final thoughts on Jeremy?
J: Jeremy uses his looks to his advantage. He has a dark complexion as well, so it lends more easily to darker, more complex characters. It involves the audience in it more closely and intensely because he is often doing repulsive things. Like in Damage, even though we loved him originally. He was so powerful and attractive. Or in M. Butterfly, where we all think he's crazy, giving up his entire life and everything in his obsession. But Jeremy's always classy. He's like bad Hugh Grant, if Hugh Grant is going to sleep with sister-in-laws and conspire as opposed to fop around or just make weird witticisms.
DJ: Agreed on all counts. And I shall leave you with this article entitled Jeremy Irons: A Pat on the Bottom Shouldn't End in Court, aka the best article title in the history of journalism.
So what do you all think of Jeremy? Does The Voice make him any more attractive in your eyes? And what about his hot son, Max (pictured above)? Hubba hubba, am I right?