A/V Room









Constantine - Gavin Rossdale Q&A

Compiled by: Jack Foley

Q: How do you play a son of Satan?
I think we all have those iconic images, a sense of the evil of Satan that you have in your mind... the inflicting of pain and no remorse and no consideration for others.
There’s kind of a freedom that came with being able to play somebody who is so sickly confident that he enjoys other people’s suffering, he is the purveyor of suffering.
In life, we all try to have some sense of conscience so there was something about watching someone die and enjoying it and just drinking water throughout and just being really relaxed.
Along with that the words were so good and so playful. If you are an emissary of Satan you are a salesman and if you are going to sell something it has got to be done in a slick sort of way. So with my costume and all that it made it scarily natural for me.

Q: What’s your idea of heaven and hell on Earth? And have you experienced one or the other?
Yeah I think so. Hell would be a combination of the suffering of other people or animals that you care about; people that are close to you and you can’t do anything about their suffering. That would be my sense of hell.
There is a personal sense of hell which is the idea of being separated from being able to fulfill a creative process or being held back by certain constraints. Or, on a frivolous level, sitting on an aeroplane with a stranger who won’t shut up.
Heaven would be those times when those perfect moments occur. As the lovely Spalding Gray coined that term ‘perfect moment’.
Where just when you think your life is really crap and you are the victim of God’s joke or the Devil’s joke or whoever and then things seem to line up. I am pretty overwhelmed at being in this film.
I saw it the other night and it is pretty overwhelming to see the reaction. I think the film is amazing and I’m in shock that I’m part of it really.

Q: Have you felt like a victim in your own life?
Yeah of course. I think that is just a human quality. I don’t think that I am unique in that. Everyone feels victimised when the world goes against them. So yes I have felt like a victim along with everyone else.

Q: When has the world been against you?
Quite regularly. Then there are other times when... I have a record that is coming out in July and I have been working on that record, I had to change labels, it took me a year to leave that label, two years to make this record.
I have been quite pushed because everyone is so nervous in the music industry these days, with the piracy and stuff it has just filtered down into complete fear at labels. That has been quite difficult in going from a multi platinum artist to being forced through a sieve almost.
That felt quite difficult personally. I don’t think it is anything in comparison with suffering in any mortal sense. But it makes life tough as I’m sure everyone has had those days when the work that we do doesn’t reach our own standards or the standards that can get it out there.
That is just life and you have to accept it and roll with it. I don’t sit and cry about it, I’m just aware that I have felt like that.

Q: In your family are movies bigger than pop now?
I don’t know. It is very strange how we are both in these very good films right at the same time. It is bizarre and you really couldn’t have written it.
If you were to write the screenplay of that it would be deemed unreal and it wouldn’t be believable. It is shocking. Gwen has a very successful, amazing record that is out now and I have a record that I’m really proud of that is about to come out. So we are having this moment in life where it just seems to be coming together.

Q: Could the next big thing be with the MTV cameras in your home?
No I don’t think that is our style. We like to have the work be the focus and the other stuff is just a by product of it. That’s how we feel about that.

Q: Isn’t it inevitable you’ll be asked to work together?
Sometimes we have sung on each other’s records because we are easy and cheap and pretty quick in the studio. The thing about us is that we are so mindful that it could be seen as cheesy. She has turned down a lot more offers.
It’s not like I have had a lot of offers but I have waited quite a while, a number of years, to find the right project and the right director.
I have found projects that I really loved before but I was not quite right for them or the director didn’t want me or wouldn’t take the chance on me.
So the way that it has all aligned is that we’ve waited this out. That goes hand in hand with this desire to keep work separate for us. We don’t want to get in the way of that. The magic could be broken. So we are a little nervous of that. If it was a really dark story about how we broke up... it would be the worse thing to walk off into the sunset together that would be terrible. So I doubt it.

Q: Will this movie end you being known as the husband of...?
The thing about it is for me that doing the alternative rock music that I’ve done is that there is an element of counter culture to it. You have your TV moment but the songs that I deal with are quite a bit darker and not played on major radio stations that people connect with for pop stars. And I’m proud of that.
My history and my love of film, art, music is not about the numbers, it is about the style of work and the genre that it’s in. I have sold a lot of records - 15 million records is a lot of records to sell, especially for this kind of music – but inevitably when you stand next to my beautiful wife anybody would be over-shadowed.
So you have to roll with the punches and just go with it and try and keep the work good.

Q: And are the punches really hard?
No, not at all. I’m just proud of her. If I moved into that style of music and tried to compete in that pop world it would be harder but that world has no interest for me whatsoever. We just support each other.

Q: How have you dealt with the recent negative press?
Just trying to rise above it and realise that anyone in life goes through certain things and you just have to try and remain dignified and just do the best you can.
Certainly not to milk it or go on about it. In a sense I think there’s something about the Celebrity Pain Club. Oh look, they suffer too... great! If that’s how it’s seen. The main thing is to appreciate that lateral things happen to people all the pain.

Q: Does it make you stronger in your marriage?
Yeah I think so. Like in any relationship when you go through tough times there is a moment when it stretches out and it just hardens so you get stronger. What you rise above makes you stronger.

Q: Would you be a contender for James Bond? Would you go to that extent to be a celebrity?
I feel quite proud that I have always stayed true to what my passions are rather than trying to be a celebrity. Liza Minnelli said a career is a series of comebacks. So that’s just it, just try to keep the work going. Bond is such an iconic role.

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