LIS­TEN TO YOUR FRIEND

HE’S A COOL DUDE. HE’S TRY­ING TO HELP YOU (AND YES, THIS IS REAL)

Empire (UK) - - PREMIERE - IL­LUS­TRA­TION ANDY MACGRE­GOR

NOT OUR WORDS, BUT THE words of Hansel in the orig­i­nal Zoolan­der. But they made us think — could Billy Zane ac­tu­ally help Em­pire read­ers with their prob­lems? And now we’re proud to say that the an­swer is, “Yes.” Please wel­come Em­pire’s first Agony Un­cle — a man who’s dead calm un­der pres­sure.

Dear Billy, My girl­friend and I are at break­ing point. I have al­ways pre­ferred to cat­e­gorise my DVD col­lec­tion al­pha­bet­i­cally, but my girl­friend prefers colour cod­ing. It may seem triv­ial, but it’s putting strain on our re­la­tion­ship — when I want to watch Die Hard, I don’t know where to look. What do you think I should do? PG

BILLY SAYS: One word, PG: Net­flix! Oth­er­wise, don’t ob­sess. Go with her colour cod­ing. Who cares? Keep her happy. If you are not watch­ing movies to make out by the sec­ond act, you are miss­ing the point of watch­ing movies with your girl­friend. Why do you think they call it phys­i­cal me­dia?

Dear Billy, I am an as­pir­ing ac­tor and have au­di­tioned for sev­eral drama schools but, so far, I’ve been turned down. I am in my last year of sixth form, yet I can’t help but feel like I’m al­ready fall­ing be­hind in life. How can I shake this feel­ing? Thank you, RG

BILLY SAYS: RG, seek pri­vate lessons and tu­tor­ing in act­ing and start mak­ing your own short-form Youtube videos. Google pri­vate tu­to­ri­als, or ad­ver­tise for pro­fes­sion­als who would gladly have another source of in­come through teach­ing. As far as dig­i­tal con­tent goes, keep it about three min­utes long, and make them fre­quently. Try com­edy, as that and mu­sic garner the most views and sub­scrip­tions. Build an au­di­ence and col­lab­o­rate with other as­pir­ing artists, and pro­fes­sion­als if you can in­te­grate them. They need it too, trust me. If pros don’t get hip to short-form dig­i­tal they will be passed by. The times are chang­ing. That drama school model is def­i­nitely one way, but there are oth­ers, and that’s just not your path right now, it seems. The rea­son will be re­vealed soon enough. Have faith. And re­mem­ber, re­jec­tion is divine pro­tec­tion.

Dear Billy, I am an art stu­dent from Hun­gary who will be 20 in April. I’m scared of the dark. I guess I was ten years old when I watched both of The Ring movies and, since then, Sa­mara has creeped me out al­most ev­ery night. My imag­i­na­tion is su­per HD. I have to run to the bath­room ev­ery night like a crazy per­son. Maybe this will fade as I grow older, but it’s been al­most ten years and it’s still scar­ing me. I have no idea how to stop this. Love, GG

BILLY SAYS: I too have been to the bath­room in Hun­gary in the mid­dle of the night. It’s scary, movie or no movie. The clas­si­cal ar­chi­tec­ture is stun­ning by day but by night can be a lit­tle omi­nous. Don’t beat your­self up. Just re­pro­gram. Use Youtube. Watch beau­ti­ful and ro­man­tic night scenes from Hol­ly­wood mu­si­cals made un­der the Arthur Freed Unit. Search for An Amer­i­can In Paris, Our Love Is Here To Stay, and watch Gene Kelly and Les­lie Caron dance un­der a bridge by the Seine at night. Or Good Morn­ing from Sin­gin’ In The Rain. Makes you wish the sun will never rise. Re­claim your sub­con­scious joy with the help of clas­sic cinema.

Dear Billy, I’m wor­ried about what to do when my son is old enough to watch movies with sex scenes in them. Any ad­vice on parental/ child em­bar­rass­ment avoid­ance? Yours, SN

BILLY SAYS: Just tem­per good judge­ment with good taste. Bet­ter that they are sex scenes in movies than of­fen­sive clips from porn sites right out of the box. Help him build a healthy ap­pre­ci­a­tion of the phys­i­cal form through art and cinema. Ital­ian soft core from the ’70s and teen movies from the ’80s are fairly lame and tame. Re­spect for the fe­male phys­i­cally and phys­i­o­log­i­cally is crit­i­cal early on. It will in­form his en­tire re­la­tion­ship to women. Same with men, I imag­ine. He will find ev­ery­thing, and build pref­er­ences, but a foun­da­tion in the pos­si­ble ideal he may shape might link love, ro­mance, clas­sic beauty and in­nu­endo to arousal.

ZOOLAN­DER 2 IS OUT NOW.

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