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Published by Harmonia Norah, 2017-08-17 05:45:07

tatler man simon pegg

simonpegg
UPLOADED

Pe op le

Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson and Tom

firstperson

I realised the only
reason you go to a
party is a) to get
drunk and b) to
flirt with people.
I do neither

8485 IRISH TATLER MAN

UGFUNNYHe’stheüber-fanboywho
turned a love of film into a
highly successful career and
now counts Tom Cruise,
Harrison Ford and the late
Robin Williams amongst
his co-stars. It’s the stuff of
dreams, admittedly, but when
not starring in blockbusters
and scripting screenplays,
Simon Pegg is keeping his
size 9s firmly on the ground,
writes Shilpa Ganatara

Wfirstperson I sound really
as Spaced really 15 years ago? boring, but I love
It seems like yesterday that Daisy and Tim’s flat-sharing being at home
adventures hit a nerve with fellow 3:3ers at the University of
Life. It skateboarded in somewhere after Men Behaving Badly
and led to irreverent, actual-funny TV as we know it, be it Peep
Show, Pete Versus Life or Catastrophe.
While the Channel 4 sitcom caused a shift in the way real
life was portrayed after, for co-creator, writer and actor (along
with W1A’s Jessica Hynes) Simon Pegg, it caused an even
greater effect. Unlikely though it was, it turned the actor –
presented as a little scruffy, ineffectively earnest, very British,
science fiction-consuming slacker and aspiring comic book
artist – into a massive Hollywood star. Giant. Huge.
We’re talking kissing Kirsten Dunst and Megan Fox –
and calling it work – levels of fame, because, of course,
that’s what happens when you star in box office big-hitters
like Mission Impossible, Star Trek and Star Wars: The Force
Awakens, his current blockbuster.
“If you’re not an American, you always feel nicely foreign
because you speak with a funny voice and they dig it,”
he says of assimilating into the LA scene, as we meet in
London. “I feel much more at home than I did when I first
started to go there.
“I have more friends and I find myself in situations that I
might have been dumbstruck when I was younger. I mean,
if I was told I’d be doing what I’m doing at 25 I would have
exploded. Now I just get up and go to work.”

Above:

Pegg at the premiere
of The World’s End,
Los Angeles

Left to right:

Pegg with the cast of
Spaced, 1999; with
Nick Frost in Shaun
of the Dead, 2004;
as Scotty in the new
Star Trek franchise

It’s not a humblebrag – many of the geeky Tim’s storylines
in Spaced (1999–2001) were based on him being an obsessive
pop culture junkie; we could very well imagine Pegg’s life now
is Tim’s actual dreams come true.

With his 46th birthday on the horizon, his approachable
nature and manboy-next-door look still intact – we’re seeing
a simple blue shirt, rough beard, tidy hair – we’d like to adopt
him as our man on the inside, and clarify a few Hollywood
myths… Is the image that celebrities present different to what
they’re like in real life? But of course, he replies.

“We all formulate our opinions of people in the public eye
by what we read about them and what we assume about them,”
says Pegg. “More often than not, unless people put their private
lives out there specifically to be studied, you don’t know about
it until you’ve met them properly, so everyone you meet will
surprise you.

8687 IRISH TATLER MAN

Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson and Tom If I was told I’d be doing what I’m
Cruise take part in a Q&A at the UK Fan doing at 25 I would have exploded.
Screening of Mission: Impossible – Now I just get up and go to work
Rogue Nation on July 25, 2015 in London

Pegg onscreen with
Alec Baldwin in
Mission: Impossible –
Rogue Nation, 2015

“What’s nice is to be pleasantly surprised by someone, especially if Intended to be a small role in the third series, such was the originality
it’s someone you’ve always admired. Leonard Nimoy (the late, great of Pegg’s portrayal of the Impossible Mission Force techie that he
Spock from Star Trek) was an icon for me growing up. When I met him I reprised his part in 2011’s Ghost Protocol, graduating from desk-bound
was nervous, but he turned out to be the sweetest, most generous and techie sidekick with comedic lines to one of the leading field agents, and
clever man. That’s always a relief, because you want the people you like once again, earlier this summer, in the action-packed Rogue Nation.
to be nice people.”
The momentum is increasing; this Christmas’s big movie is Pegg’s
And is LA as celebrity-filled as we’re led to believe? Is he constantly next film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, while in 2016 his Star Trek
bumping into Harrison Ford at Wal-Mart? duties will see him not only reprise his role as Mongomery ‘Scotty’ Scott
in Star Trek Beyond, the third in the JJ Abrams-rebooted sci-fi franchise,
He shrugs his shoulders – as if to imply, yes and what of it? but will extend to writing its script – an involvement not offered to many
“It’s like any work place – you see people that you know but never cast members.
met,” he says. “Sometimes if you both know that you’re both actors,
you might acknowledge each other. Sometimes you might see someone While he frequents LA, make no mistake, Pegg’s home and heart are
who you really like, and they recognise you and you recognise them, and in north London with his wife Maureen and six-year-old daughter Matilda
it’s OK to just go up and say hello. I did that with Jason Segel once (whose godfather is Chris Martin of Coldplay, fact fans). So when it
around the time he was in The Five-Year Engagement.” comes to increased attention from the opposite sex, he’s not buying into
Pegg’s silver screen career is the stuff of every writer/actor’s dreams. the cliché.
Working with a similar creative team as on Spaced – his co-star and
friend Nick Frost, producer Nira Park and quirky director Edgar Wright “When I’m out with my wife and girls come up to me, if they push her
– they released Shaun of the Dead in 2004, a homage to the zombie out the way to talk to me, she doesn’t take it,” he says, laughing. “She’s
movies (best line of the film: “You’ve got red on you”) on which Pegg like, ‘Oh, hi, you want to talk to Simon? I’m his wife, nice to meet you!’
was raised.
It tapped into a new type of laddish humour, and such was its “But I don’t drink, so I don’t really go out,” he continues. “I sound
success that the very similar Hot Fuzz (2007) and Run Fatboy, Run really boring, but I love being at home. I have two gorgeous dogs, a
(2007) soon followed, though by this time he’d got his all-important gorgeous wife and a gorgeous daughter, and I don’t feel I need to be out
break as Benji Dunn in the blockbuster Mission: Impossible franchise there flirting.”
starring Tom Cruise as agent Ethan Hunt.
Indeed, Pegg gave up alcohol when he turned 40 and Matilda was
born. “I felt it didn’t tally with being a father,” he explains. “It started
because I had to get up early in the morning, and I realised I enjoyed it,
and it became a thing. I maintained it, and I’m loving it.”

So no wild Hollywood parties?
“Not anymore,” he insists. “I used to love parties, I used to love the
social side of things. But since I’ve given up drinking, I find those things
awkward and boring. I realise the only reason you go to a party is a) to
get drunk and b) to flirt with people. I do neither.”
Our time draws to a close, but not before we put fame this and Star
Wars that to a side, and concentrate on the most important matter at
hand: will there be a Spaced movie?
Judging by his amused reaction, it’s not the first time he’s been asked
this. “They say never to say never…but no!” ITM

Star Wars: The Force Awakens is out on December 16


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