After Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, Simon Pegg makes his first American outing, How to Lose Friends and Alienate People. Based on the book by Toby Young, he plays Sidney, a loudmouth hack trying to make it big at a Manhattan glossy magazine.
Q: What do you see this film as? A romantic comedy? A satire?
A: It’s got a little bit of both I think. It is a satire, but it’s also shamelessly a romantic comedy. That element has been applied to it to make it engaging, fun and enjoyable. It does say something about people and celebrity and the hypocrisy of those people who hate it and want it at the same time.
Q: As fame is such a hot topic in the film, how does it make you feel?
A: I’m an actor because I can’t fix cars and I’m not very good at maths. Acting is what I can do. I don’t do it because I want to be famous, because that’s a dangerous kind of territory to exist in. It doesn’t really mean anything. It’s very fickle and worrying and horrible.
Q: What have your Hollywood adventures been like so far?
A: Consistently surprising and ridiculous. It’s one of those places that entirely lives up to expectations and exceeds it as well. It can be the worst place on earth and it can be the best. It’s like a theme park, except it’s not monkeys pulling off your windscreen wipers but it’s Jeff Goldblum. Not that he ever pulled off my windscreen wipers. There’s something incredibly superficial about it that’s hilarious and actually quite enjoyable.
Q: You’re playing Scotty in next year’s Star Trek film. Are you ready for a deluge of geeks blogging about you?
A: I’ve already started to get letters. When I did Doctor Who I took on a whole new level of fan letter, and now Star Trek…I’m ticking off the geek icons. All I’ve got to do now is Star Wars and Indy 5. There’s a whole new raft of people that are writing to me now which is kind of strange.
How to Lose Friends and Alienate People opens on October 3rd.