When some films do not pay as well and you have a mortgage to pay and you are on an economy drive eating eggs and beans, and you are offered a million dollar role and you turn it down, as it is not right. I want to be doing this when I am 60 and getting the big paying roles then so I have to pick the parts that are right for the long term rather than take the money now. [on being picky choosing roles]
I always think it's better to take a smaller role in a great film rather than a leading role in something that you don't have complete faith in.
"This is kind of my trilogy of madmen. I played the psycho in Cold Mountain (2003), my character in Green Street Hooligans (2005) (aka Green Street) is fairly psychotic and now I've got this role". On his role in Children of Men (2006).
Well, I have a great deal of pride, and I care infinitely about what my peers think [about me]. It could be my downfall, but I don't think it is - Hollywood is run on perception, and if you stray off the path of what you want to do with your career, it's suicide. I have 60 years to make the money, but the choices I make in the next five years are really going to define my career.
When I?m between jobs, I need to work out a lot for my sanity. If I weren't an actor, I'd be the fittest motherfucker on the block.
[on whether he left Fifty Shades of Grey due to the explicit sex scenes] I was excited about that element of it. The outside perception of that was that I got really cold feet and got scared of the explicit nature of the sexuality of the piece. You know what, I had such a baptism of fire with regards to sexuality on camera at the beginning of my career. I starred in the British Channel 4 miniseries Queer as Folk, where I played a young, gay character, and there were some incredible, explicit sex scenes on that show. When I was 18, I was getting fucked in the ass, completely naked, on national TV, y'know? So now that I am 16 years older and more mature, I don't anticipate [sex scenes] being too much of a problem. It's an exciting challenge.
[on full frontal nudity] The level of nudity that I do now, which is taking my shirt off, doesn't bother me at all. But I have done full frontal before. I did full frontal when I was 18 on the TV show Queer as Folk. But because I was playing a 15-year-old character, the censorship people wouldn't allow us to put it on TV. I'm sure I would [be willing to do full frontal even now]. I'll never use a body double. I'm not worried. I have nothing to hide.
[joking about all the shirtless pictures of him online] I am tired of seeing shirtless pictures of myself too! Actually, It started in a very honorable way for me. I am naturally skinny. But I keep getting hired to play these heroic guys. Like on Sons of Anarchy for the entire 7 years, I was 20 pounds heavier than where my body naturally wants to be at. So it takes an enormous amount of time and energy to get big and strong like that. And really I was acting with a bunch of big motherfuckers so psychologically, I wanted to feel like I could hold my own. But the by product of that is that I look like a gym dude. Which was never my intention! And anytime I see a picture of myself all shirtless and six-packed out I think what a twat, what a ego driven dickhead. And then something like King Arthur comes along and you can't be a chubby King Arthur, that's not the way to go. So all my gymming, it's for the profession.