Re­al­ity bites for vampire Robert

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - MOVIES -

TWI­LIGHT heart-throb Robert Pattinson says his role as a 19th cen­tury Parisian so­cial climber who sleeps his way to the top re­minds him of to­day’s re­al­ity TV stars.

Trad­ing in his brood­ing vampire for the role of an am­bi­tious bon vi­vant in Bel Ami, Pattinson’s char­ac­ter, Ge­orges Duroy, se­duces the French cap­i­tal’s most pow­er­ful women, played by Uma Thur­man, Christina Ricci and Kristin Scott Thomas.

Pattinson says Ge­orges was an up­start who knew how to use the me­dia to his ad­van­tage.

‘‘It’s ba­si­cally like be­ing a re­al­ity TV star – he found a loop­hole in life and is mak­ing money by ba­si­cally do­ing noth­ing,’’ he says.

Ricci says the film’s co­pi­ous love scenes were any­thing but erotic to make as di­rec­tors Nick Ormerod and De­clan Don­nel­lan in­sisted on his­tor­i­cal au­then­tic­ity.

‘‘It was so in­ti­mate and ro­man­tic with 100 crew mem­bers there and no ceil­ing,’’ the 32-year-old says, jok­ing.

‘‘And I was told, ‘don’t shave your armpits, be ac­cu­rate’. Then you see it on screen, with your arms raised, in this beau­ti­ful light­ing – and you’re just like ‘that was a bad move’. ‘‘Some ac­cu­racy is just not called for.’’ Pattinson says he was or­dered not to have a chis­elled up­per body for the love scenes.

‘‘De­clan said ‘ev­ery­one in the 19th cen­tury didn’t have six packs so don’t work out’,’’ Pattinson, 25, says, re­fer­ring to the ever-soslight paunch he took on for the role.

Of course, he ad­mits ro­manc­ing a string of beau­ties from teenagers to their moth­ers had its charms.

‘‘Hmmm, older women or younger women? I get my cake and eat it too ba­si­cally. They both have their good sides,’’ he says.

Based on a Guy de Mau­pas­sant novel of the same name, Bel Ami is about Ge­orges, a cav­alry of­fi­cer from poor ori­gins liv­ing in a cock­roach­in­fested hovel who trades on his good looks and charm to in­gra­ti­ate him­self with high so­ci­ety.

He meets a news­pa­per ed­i­tor and his beau­ti­ful wife Madeleine (Thur­man), who helps him take a job as a re­porter by dic­tat­ing sto­ries to him about the po­lit­i­cal sit­u­a­tion in Morocco, in which France is seek­ing to boost its in­ter­ests.

Mean­while, Ge­orges has taken the wife of a wealthy businessman as a lover (Ricci) but when the ed­i­tor dies, he mar­ries Madeleine. He is soon put off by her dom­i­nance.

When his job at the news­pa­per looks threat­ened, he beds the pub­lisher’s wife (Scott Thomas), winds up a gos­sip ed­i­tor and makes a for­tune with a sub­se­quent mar­riage.

Pattinson says he hopes he can lure some of his loyal Twi­light fans to Bel Ami.

Bel Ami

– DEB­O­RAH COLE

opens to­day.

Bel Ami. Uma Thur­man, as Madeleine, and Robert Pattinson, as Ge­orges Duroy in a scene from

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