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Jeremy Piven Chases Love in "Chasing Liberty"

Interview with Jeremy Piven


Chasing Liberty Jeremy Piven

Annabella Sciorra and Jeremy Piven in "Chasing Liberty."

Warner Bros. Pictures
In the romantic comedy "Chasing Liberty," Jeremy Piven ("Old School," "Runaway Jury") plays bodyguard to the President's daughter (Mandy Moore), while also getting to share in some of the romance of the film with co-star Annabella Sciorra.

Director Andy Cadiff compares the onscreen love story between Piven and Sciorra as similar to the 'B' love story found in musical theater. Jeremy Piven proclaims he's just happy to have had the chance to get the girl. And Jeremy's love interest in the film, Annabella Sciorra, confesses she enjoyed playing opposite the multi-talented actor. "Jeremy and I got along very well. In fact, we developed a relationship similar to our characters. We enjoy each others' company and make each other laugh but we can also annoy each other in really specific ways, which is fine because that makes Andy laugh."


Your character is involved in a romantic storyline in “Chasing Liberty.” Personally, what impresses you about a woman?
A lot of things. Where do I begin? I’m just mystified and fascinated by women, and I’m still single. Hence all of that, and the fact that I celebrate them so much, I understand that I’m unevolved at this exact moment to share my life with one. I wouldn’t inflict that upon anyone yet. But, I’m getting closer.

I think just a combination of being able to be comfortable with your own voice, your own opinion, and take on life. And to be able to be open to someone else’s, to have your own loves and skills and talents, and yet be able to have enough room for someone else’s. Those are really interesting things to me.

Can you talk about the romantic attraction/fencing match sort of relationship your character has with Annabella Sciorra in the movie?
That was the case where they wanted to show a guy who is kind of incapable of showing his feelings with women. There are a lot of guys like that. They don’t know how to do that and, as a result, they are totally misunderstood. That’s the way this guy was with her.

I think that the movie, there’s a nice little theme that runs through it about how Matthew [Goode’s] character doesn’t believe that anyone does the big gesture anymore. No one takes action. And ours is also a metaphor for doing that. I mean, she mentions that it would be cool if I would shave my head. Then he makes this big gesture, for him, and she realizes that he did have these feelings for her. He just didn’t know how to express them. That’s the way, unfortunately, a lot of relationships are. If they could just get past all the misunderstandings, it could get really interesting.

What interested you in the script in the first place? Was it the little romantic subplot or that you got to film in very cool locales?
You know, the locations were amazing. That’s never been a factor before with me but after doing it, now it is (laughing).

This is more like… I haven’t gotten a lot of opportunities to get the girl. Every actor, when he takes a role to really flesh it out, thinks of his character as the lead character so that he can give his character as much integrity as possible. The cool thing about this one is that it has the arc and the feel of a lead character, and a lead storyline, at the same time it’s part of an ensemble. That’s part of why I took it.

I think Annabella is a brilliant actress. I knew she’d be perfect for this role. I could totally see falling for her. I can totally see being misunderstood by her. And I could see trying to be funny with her, and her being a perfect straight man. For those reasons, I thought it would obviously work.

Did you make up your ‘Hebrew Hip-Hop’ line?
I did, actually.

What inspired that line?
I’m Jewish and when I was Bar Mitzvahed, the only way that I could learn my haftorah portion was to rap it. I did it with a hip-hop beat because I grew up listening to hip-hop. It’s funny because now it seems like white America has been co-opting this gangster hip-hop thing. I grew up in Chicago and being one of the only white boys, I had that experience from the time I was a kid. It’s very much a part of, in a way, my history and my upbringing and my culture. And so I’m totally misunderstood. I’ll talk to people and I’ll say, “I’m going to meet my boys. We’re going to hook up.” They’re like, “My boys? What does that mean?” They think that I’m trying to pull a Justin Timberlake situation (laughing).

PAGE 2: Jeremy Piven on Choosing Roles, Attractive Genres, and What's Next

Mandy Moore Interview
Interview with Matthew Goode
"Chasing Liberty" Photo Gallery
"Chasing Liberty” Trailer, Credits and Movie News

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