Tom Sturridge


To take a breather from films, British actor Tom Sturridge ran among the lions. He returned some 14 months later from Botswana’s Okavango Delta, where he had been studying the animals with his cousins. “I wasn’t very brave or very helpful,” admits Sturridge, 22. “You drive to the toilet there. You don’t walk or you’ll be killed.” What he gained was a crash course in survival. “Once, my 10-year-old cousin was driving the car, and we were charged by 10 elephants,” Sturridge recalls. Compared with that trip, the actor’s other experiences have been slightly less terrifying-particularly shooting The Boat That Rocked alongside Philip Seymour Hoffman earlier this year. The film concerns pirate-radio operators in the ’60s; Sturridge stars as a young Turk mentored by a legendary DJ played by Hoffman. “He’s astonishing,” Sturridge says of his co-star. “If you’re an actor, he’s one of the people you want to work with before you die.” It’s been a few years since Sturridge got his break playing the son of Annette Bening’s character in 2004’s Being Julia. But he didn’t mind the hiatus. “I want to do good stuff, which basically means waiting a bit,” he says. Of course it’s all timing: “If we did this interview next week, I’d say, ‘Listen, motherfucker, I’m playing Batman tomorrow!’ ” -Michael Martin