Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson star in Paramount Pictures' adorable romantic comedy, "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days." In the film, McConaughey plays Benjamin Barry, an advertising executive who has a reputation as a lady-killer. Accepting a high-stakes bet with his boss and two female co-workers, Benjamin must get a woman to fall in love with him in just 10 days, or lose out on his chance to work on a huge advertising account. Unbeknownst to him, the woman his co-workers select for him to woe has a mission of her own. While he tries to win her over, she does everything in her power to make him dump her.
Matthew McConaughey recently sat down to talk about the movie, and since the film is all about love, McConaughey addressed a few questions regarding his own personal ideas of love and romance.
MATTHEW McCONAUGHEY ('Benjamin')
Are you as confident as this character?
I've always been comfortable with women. Since [I was] young, around my mother and father, pop always talked to us, sat us down early with the birds and bees, [and talked] about respect for a woman. I remember him telling us just as we were getting to be 13 and dates started to happen, I remember him saying, "If you ever sense that a woman is even the slightest bit uncomfortable with anything that you're doing, whether it's a kiss or just physically being close, they're not going to say it. You'll be able to tell long before [anything's said]. Trust that sense of being able to tell if they're slightly uncomfortable and stop then. Any time you ever get intimate it should be both people wanting it just as much. Never, ever try to force or push a woman into doing anything." That was early on, [I was] 13 years old, and I remember at the lake house having that talk.
I do love women. Ben loves women. That was a great perspective of his that he believed and that I buy. Part of that's not objectifying them. Ben does it in that line where he says, "Well, that sounds cocky." No, it's confident. Why? Because, like he says, "Whether they're eight years old, 35 years old or my 88-year-old grandmother, I love women. Mother nature, mermaids, the white buffalo. All women." It's a wonderful sex, man. One that we're never going to figure out. That's for damn sure.
How was your experience working with Kate Hudson?
Here's my favorite thing about Kate. Number one, I saw her in "Almost Famous," I thought she was just adorably divine in that. We met for five minutes and it was obvious in the first five minutes that there's a lot of potential for us to have great chemistry. We have similar senses of humor. That's a biggie. Two, she's got that good mix of part hippie, but she also loves her blue ribbons. So, she's very ambitious as well. She's comfortable with her sexuality. She's 23 so she's like this young girl and she's very girly but at the same time, she's got some very mature, womanly ways. Those are great mixes. Plus, she's a fine actress.
Keeping in line with the movie's theme, how could a guy lose a girl?
It's not the exact same. It's all a version of coming on too strong. You girls have probably all met guys who came on too strong before anything naturally evolved, and nobody likes being on the receiving end of that. But then a guy, the other joke is a guy can get probably a little more crude a little quicker, be a little less couth, but that would be for comedy's sake if you're trying to lose somebody. I don't know. What could guys do if you're trying to lose [them]? I'm not one for sending the FAX over to break-up. I'm not one to send a phone call. I'd rather go sit down in person, and those sit downs can suck. But afterwards, you both feel a lot better that at least you sat down in person and did it. And break-ups suck. What's that line in the movie? "Yeah, it sucks. That's why they call it breaking up."
Ben finds personal items suddenly appearing in his bathroom. If you found tampons in your cabinet, would you freak?
Personally, items like that that are like necessities, don't really bug me or make me squirm. It's the fact that they show up uninvited.
But isn't it a loving gesture?
That's what I mean. You don't come in and invite yourself to loving gestures. That's the great part, courtship, and men and women getting together. They get to invite each other. That's fun. I've had somebody take a drawer, [somebody] took the liberty of trying to take a drawer. It's my drawer until I invite you by saying, "Would you like to have the drawer?" And especially early in a relationship.
What about calling?
That's a pretty good one. Call, click. Now you've got Caller ID so people know better than to do that, but then they can block a number. But then you're going, "Well, who else would be calling and clicking, calling and clicking?" Then you get the call and it was the same [number] that's blocked again. I've got one blocked call in the last three days and now I pick it up and it's you, what's going on? If you've got somebody that's a little overanxious? Yeah, I get a little bit spooked.
What about girls making the first move?
How about kissing you first?
Girls kissing you first? You can do that. Part of it is not thinking of it as a move. If it's going to work, the girl's going to move in to kiss you, usually it's going to work. You're looking forward to the kiss or she beat you to it by a second or two. But, if you don't want the kiss and they make the first move, then it's not a great first move. Usually, your spider sense, it's your pheromones, you smell that coming and you can't wait for it to happen. Usually, you know you're about to kiss if you both want it, long before you kiss. Just the way you move through a room. I think our mammal senses can tell that.
How about girls asking you out?
I prefer to ask them out. I also prefer to call them.
What do you do that's romantic?
Let me tell you about Valentine's Day. I call it the trifecta. It has been a Bermuda Triangle before and that's called Christmas, New Years and Valentine's Day. If a man and a woman can make it through that trifecta, the rest of the year is butter.
You made it one time?
I made it a few times, and it wasn't easy.
Why do guys hate Valentine's Day?
Because you all pump it up so big. Here's what it is: If you're out and you see some great gift that just reminds you of your woman, and you get it for her, and it's just Tuesday and you get her this great gift on Tuesday, because I know I'm not one for saving it up, like, "Ooh, I'm going to save this for her birthday." All of a sudden, [the] birthday comes up or a holiday comes up a month later and you feel like you've got to top that gift that you gave just on a Tuesday. So, if you give a puppy on a Tuesday, you're in trouble come [her] birthday or Valentine's Day. You can paint yourself into a corner with that.
Jewelry's always good.
See, I'm not a big jewelry guy. I like doing something, finding out a little something about a woman, about what they really want to do, and set up things in front of them that are just enough to get them to where they want to go or what they want to do.
What's the most romantic thing you've ever done?
I'm not a huge "send 100 roses over" kind of thing. I'd send a huge bowl of those Cyperus Papyrus' out there - those ponytails out there - for the garden. That's what I would do before I send a huge bouquet. I'd send a big 10 foot string of Jasmine Vine that would go somewhere in the garden before I would send a place setting that's going to die in a week. I'd rather have something that they could plant, keep it there, and whether we're together or not, 10 years from now, that plant's grown.
I'm not much on the 'direct' romantic. I'm not much on moves or lines or things like that, but I love to cook. It's a great comfortable place that I find to get to know somebody, [to] have a date over to my house and cook. It's a great place for conversation. I love conversation in the kitchen. I love having that one thing that I get to do, cooking while you're there. It makes the conversation easier than just sitting down, two people sitting in front of each other and having to talk. You get to cook, you get to sip on some wine, you get to move around, you get to bring stuff up, listen to some music. It makes it very easy.
Do men really hate the "what are you thinking" thing?
Every woman's done that. You get 20 good minutes of silence when you're just sitting there, on a road trip, you're driving somewhere and you're just enjoying the road. You haven't really thought about anything. You're just watching the movie, you're just sitting there reading a book on the other end of the couch, and all of a sudden, we always feel it before you ask, "What are you thinking?" Then what do we do? Our mind starts spinning. We start thinking, "What am I thinking? What was I thinking? I wasn't thinking about nothing." And then all of a sudden they go, "Okay." And we go, "Whoa, whoa, wait a minute. What are you talking about?" And all of a sudden, there it gets the ball rolling.
So are fighting dragons like in "Reign of Fire" easier than dealing with women?
Of course, man. Dragons you know. Dragons are simple. They're in the sky, bang, bring them down to the ground, simple. Women, man, we're never going to figure you all out. I think if we can enjoy trying to figure you all out, that's the ticket. Forget trying to figure you all out - it's impossible.
Is it more difficult when you're famous? What about dating other famous people?
That's a whole other sit-down. I guess what can be an odd thing is if you're famous and the other person's not. That other person comes in, however much they believe it or not, they already sort of have a bio, just like us sitting down here. I don't know any of you all but you already have somewhat of a sense of who I am, or who you think I am. How much of that's true or not? I don't know. But, what happens is it's very hard to have that courtship. The great part about the courtship is it's two strangers. It starts off with, "Hey, what's your name?" It's a great place to start. So, a lot of times a relationship with someone like me could start with, "So, how's Ms. Hudd?" I'm going, "Wait a minute. How did you know I had a dog? How did you know her name was Ms. Hudd?" You're already asking about the dog. What happened to, "What do you do?" That can be kind of funky and funny.
Is it possible to have privacy with tabloids following you around?
It's not impossible. It probably used to be. I used to think it was a little more weird, but now, I pretty much take more the prescription of I like what I'm doing. I like whoever I'm spending time with, so if I'm going out, that's part of going out. Someone's there when we walk out the door. It's part of it. If I don't like that, [then I] don't go out. So instead of fighting it, going, "God, I can't believe, what are they doing? I can't believe this long shot through the window. Get a life." Whatever it is, fighting it is ridiculous and that's part of why I enjoy Hollywood a lot more now than I used to. Not just that, but the entire business, you've got to get the joke. Get it and sort of go with it instead of fight it. Or, if you don't really like it, if it really, really bothers you that much, don't go out. Or, rent an entire place out and take three bodyguards to stand out front and have a back entrance.
Are you more relaxed about it now?
Like I said, I enjoy it. I don't know if part of it's - just whether I was doing this or not - you grow older. 33 years old feels cool.
Have you come to terms with stardom?
Absolutely. More so than bothering me, you've got to figure it out and when it's happening. There's no explaining to somebody, "Here's what you do when this happens." To do it, you have to experience it yourself and when you're experienced, you can't be objective and sit here and go, "Hmm." Just like anyone in here, if you fall in love this afternoon, or if anyone in here gets a call from someone in their family who says, "We had a death in the family," when it happens, you can't sit there and objectify it. When you're the subject, you can't really get outside yourself and say, "Here's the best way to handle it," because you're experiencing it. Only with time can you really look at it and go, "Oh, now I understand what that is."
How do you see your career?
I'm mixing it up, man. I'm enjoying it. I'm doing it on purpose, mixing it up. That's been the only rule I've had is to keep trying to surprise myself and keep mixing it up.