Rising Star: ‘I Am Number Four’s’ Alex Pettyfer
First Published: January 29, 2011 12:09 AM EST Credit: Getty Images
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Alex Pettyfer has spent most of his life in front of the camera.
The Brit’s angled cheekbones and blue eyes won him modeling spots as a youngster for brands like GAP, Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein, but not content to just be a pretty face, he decided to turn to acting as a teen.
Alex netted a few parts quickly, like the title role in the UK TV movie “Tom Brown’s Schooldays,” before fronting “Alex Rider: Operation Strombreaker,” a young-person’s adventure film, which also featured Ewan McGregor, Bill Nighy and Mickey Rourke.
It is, however, his turn as John Smith in “I Am Number Four” that will make this AccessHollywood.com Rising Star a household name.
The thriller, directed by D.J. Caruso (who helped make Shia LaBeouf a breakout star with “Disturbia” and later “Eagle Eye”), sees Alex playing John, a teen who has to hide his true supernatural identity from friends and keep under the radar, and out of the way of a series of deadly forces whose mission is to destroy him.
”[It’s] an action adventure movie with a sci-fi twinge with a really strong character played by Alex, who begins the movie as a young man who’s a little bit confused and ends the movie as this sort of fierce warrior who’s accepted his destiny,” D.J. told Access Hollywood recently of his film’s leading man.
The film pits Alex alongside “Justified’s” Timothy Olyphant, and Alex’s real-life girlfriend, “Glee’s” Dianna Agron, and throws in explosions and a heck of a lot of stunts.
“I think the most complicated and most fun was probably the back flip off the waterfall,” Alex told Access of his stunt moves. “There was a point — it was the last take and D.J. was at the monitor, very calm, very relaxing energy and he said I need you to get closer to the waterfall, I need your head to be closer because it’s a close up of your head, of your face. And I said, ‘OK, I’ll go close.’… And I nearly hit my head!”
Luckily he made it out in one piece, which means the actor will still be around when the fans come running, especially as this movie is already drawing comparisons to “Twilight.”
“I hope we have the success [like] ‘Twilight.’ We’ll take the success of ‘Twilight,’ but we have not made a ‘Twilight’ movie. I mean, there’s this compelling story of romance in ‘I Am Number Four,’ which drives John to what he does, but he’s a reluctant hero,” Alex explained.
“It’s about a boy turning into a man, turning into a warrior [and] having to follow his destiny,” Alex continued.
Fans will get their chance to check Alex out on the big screen on February 18, and again, just a few weeks later when his long-awaited modern-day take on “Beauty and the Beast” is released – “Beastly, co-starring Vanessa Hudgens.
The film, which also stars Peter Krause and Mary-Kate Olsen, will be released on March 4.
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