Charlie Cox – Does that name sound familiar?

September 2007 By Philip Berk

Meet the real Charlie and the Chocolate Factory 

He’s the charismatic star of Stardust

So how did a well bred kid like Charlie Cox get into acting I wondered

And he explained, “There’s a chocolate bar in England called a Milky Bar. Their adverts feature a ten year old kid who saves the world by giving out Milky Bars. When I was about nine I auditioned for the part.”

And now for the letdown. 

“I didn’t get the part but that was my first memory of wanting to be an actor.

After that I went to a school that had a very good drama department. If you wanted to get involved with acting there you had no make a real commitment  you had to give up all your free time, all your weekends, you couldn’t go home for the weekend, you couldn’t do  all sorts of things, it had to be a total commitment.”

Was it a public school?  (meaning elitist)

“Yeah it was. I took it very seriously, and by the time I was ready to leave, when I was eighteen or nineteen. I thought I could pursue it. I’d heard about actors going to drama school, but I was lucky enough to meet a casting director in London who has now become a dear friend of mine; he got me an audition for a film which I ended up getting my first part. From that I got an agent that I’ve ever since.”

Do you come from a theatrical family?

”Not at all. The closest I can think of is my  grandmother who went to RADA before the war but had to quit when the war started.”
Do you have any siblings?

“I have two brothers and two sisters. I am the youngest by about ten years, so kind of a mistake really.”

Are you close to any of them?

“I am very close to all my bothers and sisters although technically three of them are from my father’s marriage so half siblings really. My one real brother is closest to me in age but ten years older.”

None of them are actors then. Are they married? 

“Yes and they all have children except my real brother.” 

What do they do for a living?

“My oldest brothers are both in advertising. My dad is a publisher. He’s a very interesting and wise man and a wonderful dad. But he knows nothing about the movie business so he has no real way of helping me make decisions. My mother’s probably the artistic one in the family. She’s always singing and dancing around the house, horribly I might add. But she is my biggest fan.”

And your sisters?

“They’re full time mothers.”

How about a girl friend?

“I’ve had good and bad experiences with girlfriends, but at the moment I don’t have one.”

Do you live in London?

“When I started getting jobs as an actor, film jobs that is, I moved to New York for a year, which is one of the best years I can remember, and it’s something I plan to do very soon, maybe even this year.  But currently I live in London. Even though my parents moved all over the place, I spent time in the countryside in England, and I even lived in France. My parents now live in France, but I consider myself a London guy. I was born there, spent most of my childhood there. I’ve lived there on my own for the past five years apart from that year I spent in New York. I do have a flat mate while I’m not there.”

Any story behind your tattoo?

“It was a gift from a friend of mine who’s a very brilliant tattoo artist.” 

Why the butterfly/

“Because I like butterflies. I’ve always liked butterflies and he specializes in skulls so it’s kind f a mixture of the two.”

Any plans to get another?

“I may. My manager’s in the room and he’s kind of against it.”

And your ring?

“When I was in India last year — I’d got lost in this small city called Jaisaimer, it’s the northern most point close to Pakistan. I was in some fort. There were no tourists around. I was a bit nervous, and this lovely Indian man stopped me in the street and took me back to his little house. He introduced me to his brother, and they made me this ring. We spent a day going  through all aspects of my life, my star sign, my Chinese year, my favorite team. He engraved all these things into my ring.  So I’ve got the Arsenal cannon, Big Ben, Sagittarius. everything that represents me.”

Why were you in India?

“My ex girlfriend was doing a movie there. I went there to support her and ended up staying much longer.”
Stardust was a plum role. How did he get it?

“When I auditioned none of the stars were on the table, It was going to be  a medium budgeted British movie and they were looking for someone like me. I saw it as an opportunity to carry a movie, and if it was successful then it would be a great break for me.  I never for a moment thought they would cast Robert DeNiro, Michelle Pheiffer, Claire Danes , Sienna Miller., and I would have the leading role. When it happened it was bizarre and still is.”

What are your tastes in music?

“I listen to practically anything and everything with one exception. I am not a massive R & B fan. At the moment I’m listening to the Velvet Underground. Nirvana. MC5 Television, the Stooges and the New York Dolls.”

His age? A very insecure 24!