Chances are, you've read a few stories about Jason Statham—and that’s exactly what they are for the most part: stories. When I had the opportunity to sit down with Statham, we talked about how he's been misrepresented by many media outlets, and it became clear to me that telling his story was something only his words could do justice.
MF: How do you think you became the man you are today?
JS: I look at my mom and dad—they get up, they walk every day, they do ballroom dancing, and they’re as happy as two pigs in shit, as we say. My mom’s always impressed upon me [to eat] good food, healthy food, and to just stay healthy. When I was growing up, my dad didn’t have weights, so he made himself a weight bench. Instead of a hand-me-down jacket it was a hand-me-down weight bench.
A hand-me-down weight bench and ballroom dancing? Well, you’ve obviously made use of the bench, but when are we going to see you dancing?
That’s not going to happen.
But it does run in the family? [Laughs]
Still, I’m not putting on the tight trousers. I appreciate a lot of things, but it’s not my destiny to spin around. [Laughs]
You could leave that to your co-star in your upcoming movie, Parker. How was it working with Jennifer Lopez?
In Hollywood, people get reputations, just rumors that are passed down. She couldn’t have been a nicer, more pleasant person to work with. She was just fantastic. She was just like a bubbly young girl. That’s what I remember about her—just a beam of light. I loved working with her.
There’s a fight scene in Parker that everyone will be remembering for some time. It’s a “holy crap” moment—one that many of your fans almost expect in your films. Do you look for things like that when considering a script?
No. Basic answer.
What do you look for?
The action-movie genre is a very difficult one to get satiated in terms of your acting bits. You just want to get behind the story [and] someone that has something good to say. I’m not trying to shy away from something I love and enjoy. Some of my favorite movies are action movies. You want something good to say. That comes from good writing. But writing is not a skill I possess, unfortunately.