Aaron Eckhart Talks About The Movie 'No Reservations'

He’s Hollywood’s unstarry, unconventional, thinking actor, who flashed to fame with movies like Thank You For Smoking and In the Company of Men.

Having shared screen-space with the likes of Julia Roberts, Hillary Swank and Gwyneth Paltrow, actor Aaron Eckhart has now been paired opposite Catherine Zeta-Jones in No Reservations , in which he plays a chef who ‘spices’ up his lady love’s life.

From serious, art-house cinema to a romantic comedy like No Reservations. That’s quite a change?

I felt that it was time to do something light-hearted, to play a more free-spirited role. When I read this script I simply loved it. After all, I get to play a chef, to be in love with Catherine, and work with a director like Scott Hicks.

I thought it was the perfect thing for me to do. I come in, crack jokes, kiss the girls, play with the kid and go home. I do like comedy much more than drama right now.

I’m falling in love with making people laugh. It’s easier to work that way. I think as an actor you should be able to ride a horse, shoot a gun and sing opera.

And have you worked on your culinary skills or do you keep a fire extinguisher at hand while cooking at home?

Well, I’m almost close to perfect. I’m definitely spending more time in kitchen now. And I’m pretty good at chopping and tossing too.

So did you and Catherine cook up something together?

Yes, we had a few interesting fires going, but it was very well supervised. We didn’t play with the knives too much though.

What do you like best about your character?

I think in my character there’s a lot of cocky arrogance and competition. I’m breaking-in Catherine like a horse really.

Sorry, Catherine (smiles). It’s like seeing something you can’t have. I think women appreciate a man who will not really put her in her place, but not put up with bad behaviour either. Women like honest men, and that’s just what I am in the movie.

What was more distracting — the irresistible aroma of food or the stunning Catherine?

Definitely Catherine!

What’s tougher — comedy or cooking?

The toughest part was singing opera. I didn’t have knowledge of opera, it was fun to learn and say the words, though I don’t speak Italian. I haven’t done it before, nor will I ever do it again. I was tricked into it (laughs).

Would you cook for a woman to impress her?

Food is an offering, and to feed someone else is a gift. Like they say it’s a way into people’s hearts. The thought of cooking for my girlfriend is amazing. I would love to be able to cook a Thanksgiving dinner.

Have you watched any Indian films?

Yes, the restaurant where I eat Indian food in LA shows Indian films and we watch them all the time.

Some of our Indian actors are doing Hollywood films and vice-versa. Are you keen to be part of an Indian film?

I was talking about doing this Indian movie with an all Indian star cast. I can’t remember the filmmaker’s name; I don’t think he’s too famous. Maybe he was, I’m not quite sure. Now you’re putting me in a spot... okay, they were English. Well, see you ruined it all!

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