James McAvoy

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    • (Commenting on the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (RSAMD))
      James: The academy has been involved in my life a lot, from before I even knew of it, just through music teachers who studied here and then through a short time at youth theatre.

    • James: I considered becoming a priest very seriously. I wanted to travel the world. By the time I turned 16, I realised I was only in it for selfish reasons. And, more importantly, I didn't want to sacrifice the ladies!

    • (on being approached in public toilets by fans)
      James: People are never nasty to me, but I do find it disconcerting when you're urinating and the guy next to you goes, 'Hey man, love the movie', and I'm like, 'Er. Thanks.' It's even worse when they try to shake your hand. I'm like, 'Wash your hand, it's just been on your d**k.

    • (on kissing Angelina Jolie in "Wanted")
      James: I can tell you what it was like to kiss her on a film set: It was awkward, sweaty and not very nice. There was angst involved in that, as always. I don't think Brad Pitt felt threatened for one moment.

    • (on his six-pack during the film "The Wanted")
      James: They were not a special effect. It was the result of a lot of time at the gym - which I hated. I would actually rather eat dog poo than exercise.

    • (revealing he will take a break in acting to spend more time with his wife)
      James: I have been in employment for a long time, so I am taking a bit of a break. I've done enough for a while and people get fed up of seeing you, but apart from that, although I'm young, I need a bit of rest. You could say I have become a house husband. It's not a new man thing, it's just largely a boring man who doesn't mind staying in the house thing.

    • (on filming sex scenes with Keira Knightley for Atonement)
      James: It's always a nightmare filming sex scenes, isn't it? It's never easy and it's always a little bit sweaty and uncomfortable. When they call action, if you feel the lady's breast, it's your decision to feel the lady's breast. It's like, this is wrong. You have no parameters.

    • (on being knocked out, twice, while filming boxing scenes in "Becoming Jane")
      James: I enjoyed doing the old-fashioned fisticuffs but because you are not wearing gloves you risk getting smacked in the face, which did happen.

    • James: I'd like to keep work work and life life. It means you've got your life to come back to, somewhere to come home to at night that isn't invaded by your day.

    • (about his fire-breathing skill)
      James: Some guy taught me at T in the Park a few years ago, so I did it at parties. It's still incredibly easy to burn your entire face off though, so I wouldn't recommend it.

    • (about privacy and his wife, Anne-Marie Duff)
      James: Even if I wasn't an actor, I wouldn't be telling everybody about the love of my life.

    • (on going to drama school)
      James: It was a very weird world to go into from a normal working-class upbringing in Glasgow.

    • James: I actually went to drama school in Glasgow, so I stayed in my home town the whole time. However, I see more of my friends now than I did then. It's strange.

    • James: I really liked Starter For Ten because I grew up watching 1980s teen films like St Elmo's Fire and The Breakfast Club and I've always wanted to play the underdog lead hero in a 1980s-inspired film. I also really liked playing Mr Tumnus in Narnia. I got to play my favourite character in children's literature, which I loved. You don't get the chance to do that in other jobs.

    • James: I got star-struck with Tom Hanks. I met him for the first time in May 2000 when he was producing Band of Brothers and I couldn't really talk to him. He said: 'Are you having a good time?' and I said: 'Yeah, I thought you were great in Joe Versus the Volcano,' because I loved that film, that's one of my favourites from being a teenager. I launched into this and he was like, 'Stop there kid, calm down, you're all right'.

    • James: Where it gets difficult is when you get two or three jobs back to back where you're playing leads and doing 13, 14 hours a day, six days a week, and you suddenly think, hang on a minute, how can you have a life like this? Do I work to live or live to work? How can I work properly with no life to inform the work?

    • James: I always believed that I never wanted to be an actor. I only did it because I was allowed to do it and I had to do something.

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