Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Male on Monday...Jeremy Northam

The hero inspiration for Ally's latest book has been a long time in the making. Her computer has been filled with phtos of him for years. And now she is willing to share with you one of the loves of her life...

I have wanted to use this guy as the basis for a hero in yonks. In forever. Since the day I realised I could! But I’ve never found him the right vehicle. Probably because I have always written sweet romances and I think that this guy is just about one of the sexiest on the planet.

This picture alone inspired a whole book - Getting Down to Business was born of nothing more than this picture. This crumpled, just got out of bed, picture. I love everything about it. The black top, the straight stare, the stubble, the mussed hair. Isn't he delicious? Needless to say this was my first attempt at a sexier book, and I totally blame Jeremy!

With that upper-class Brit accent, that dark curling hair, those beautiful dark eyes, that crooked smile makes him is just too yummy for words. He seems a seducer, a cad, a bad boy with just enough scruffiness in his mien that I am forever sure he can be tamed.

I had dinner with an author friend in London once who knew a big British casting director. They had told tales of actors and how so many of them don’t live up to what you think they’ll be like in real life. With many of them being foppish or effeminate and not the manly men you see on the screen. Her comment that relates to this here tale? “Oh, no not Jeremy.” Of the whole lot of them he, in person is pure sex appeal. Apparently even the women in her office, women whose job it is to sort through beautiful men to find the most charismatic go weak at the knees when he walks in the room.

A regular in British period pieces he plays great bad guys. Or guys who are not quite as nice as they seem. Or good guys who are terribly flawed, but so gorgeously forgivable. The sexily unforgiving inspector in Enigma. The charismatic and patient Mr Knightly to Gwyneth Paltrow’s Emma.

To my mind the uptight, lovelorn lawyer in The Winslow Boy is his piece de resistance. This is a small film, set in the England of 1912. Directed by David Mamet it is based on the true story of a young boy who is expelled from military college for stealing money from the locker of a classmate.

If you haven’t seen it – do! It is a lovely story, an uplifting story, a great piece of filmmaking and a lesson in the art of subtle seduction. Jeremny plays Sir Robert Morton - a snooty conservative lawyer and politician and the beautiful romance plays out between him and Catherine Winslow, the older sister of the accused boy and a confidant, quietly sassy suffragette.

And then afterwards, listen to the director’s commentary on the DVD. There you will discover that Jeremy himself insisted upon adding that element to the relationship. He insisted upon a tension, a romance that didn’t need to be there for the story to have worked, but which gave the film such an added layer of pathos, and poignancy and warmth that would otherwise have been missing. If you don’t go all warm and fuzzy all over during the last scene of that film, then I don’t know what!

Fun facts about Jeremy!

  • He was born in Cambridge.
  • He is 6'2"
  • While playing the small role of Osric and understudying the title role in a 1989 production of "Hamlet," Jeremy replaced star Daniel Day-Lewis when the actor had a total breakdown in mid-performance.
  • Jeremy Northam – welcome to the club!

    Ally's latest, her first ever Modern Extra, GETTING DOWN TO BUSINESS, is out in the UK right now. As we speak. Heck there may not even be that many left on the shelves so you'd better hurry.... ;)

    Though you can be one of the first to read about Abbey and Flynn by checking out an except online now!

    And count along with how many of the above pitcures made it into her book ;).


    1. Ah, great MOM! (Male On Monday) --- and it's only Sunday!!

      I lurk here alot, but just had to post about Jeremy! I first discovered him when I saw his starring role in the CBS television movie "Martin & Lewis" where he played Dean Martin to Sean Hayes' (of "Will and Grace" fame) Jerry Lewis.

      Much was made of Hayes' channeling the antics and facial expressions of Jerry Lewis, but I was totally taken in by Jeremy's protrayal of Dean Martin --- he was amazing! I too have my own file on this amazing man and I too am waiting for the right story to come along for him.

      Guess I will have to have my UK friends send me a copy of Ally's book!

    2. Ally,

      Something else we agree on - I think he's just terrific! Thanks for this post. I remember the first time I saw Jeremy Northam, in Emma, and I've been hooked ever since. I can see how he became your inspiration!


    3. Thanks ladies - it's lovely to know 'my' man has so many fans out there. Though did I mention he's mine? All mine???


    4. Ally,
      When will Getting Down to Business publish in US.
      I tried to find out from upcoming release on eharlequin site but could not find it.
      Will it ever publish here?