Theo James is a great kisser, according to Shailene Woodley who stars alongside him in the much-anticipated movie adaptation of Veronica Roth’s best-selling young adult novel Divergent.
“He’s an incredibly masculine man with a beautiful soulful heart – and he was a great kisser,” Woodley said in a recent interview.
In the movie, which hits theaters this weekend, James plays Four, the Dauntless instructor who connects and eventually falls in love with Woodley’s Tris.
According to Divergent director Neil Burger, there was an immediate connection between James and Woodley:
“With the other guys we’d been auditioning, Shai was the one that was pushing them back. When Theo was opposite her, she knew that he was the Four.”
— Divergent (@Divergent) March 11, 2014
Of the role, James has said “I had an immediate affinity with the character. I think we share certain qualities. You tend to try and use everything you share with a character in everything you do. I love this person who you don’t know what he’s thinking. He’s the type of person when he walks into a room, doesn’t need to be the loudest voice, but you still feel his presence. He’s not someone who speaks too much, but you know he’s thinking all the time. He’s a very perceptive person. On top of that, there’s kind of a dangerous stillness I felt he had when reading the book and the script.”
A native of Oxfordshire, England, 29-year-old James earned an undergraduate degree in philosophy from the University of Nottingham and studied acting at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. In his final year at Bristol, he was tapped for a minor role in Woody Allen’s You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger.
— Divergent (@Divergent) March 16, 2014
“It might have worked for others, but I was not mature enough to do it,” James has said of his decision to wait until his 20s to start acting. “I needed to be a bit more grounded and to have more to draw from. It was the right decision for me.”
James made a brief but well-remembered appearance on Downton Abbey as Michelle Dockery’s ill-fated lover Kemal Pamuk. From there, he went on to play the role of Jed Harper in the British supernatural television series Bedlam and starred opposite Kate Beckinsale in Underworld: Awakening.
Upcoming film projects include London Fields with Johnny Depp, Amber Heard, and Jaimie Alexander and Franny with Dakota Fanning and Richard Gere.
James admitted he’s concerned about being typecast after starring in what is expected to be a blockbuster this weekend: “Inevitably what will happen is that opportunities will open and you get choices presented to you that you definitely need to be strong enough to say no to. Then the stuff that you really want to go for, you’ll still have to hustle for and still have to fight for, so I think that will be my challenge: to play everything in opposition to that.”
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