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I'm Not a Sex Symbol, Clarín (Argentina), July 22, 2003
translated by Maria Jose

From Legolas of The Lord of the Rings to the hero of Pirates of the Caribbean: The curse of Black Pearl, this english actor of 26 years is going on a fast road to stardom.

Maybe, in a few years, when Orlando Bloom remembers his first brushes with the international press, a nostalgic smile will cover his face. And if some video survives of his chat with the media previous to the opening in the United States of POTC, probably the sneer will be transformed into laughter.

Ah, being young and good looking! Those were the days! To have to talk about girlfriends, hobbies and of the care of the body. Smile patiently and answer about romances on the set, kisses with the costars and dreams about stardom. This is that Bloom, since he appeared out of nowhere in "The Lord of the Rings"- playing the blonde and androgynous elf Legolas - has not only become a sex-symbol of high impact, but that here, in Hollywood, is given more care and pampering than Johnny Depp.

His appearance in the scene of the cinema belongs to that kind of story that, if not being in a time so dreary, we could call a "fairy tale". Two days before finishing drama school, this boy who was born in Canterbury obtained the role of Legolas, for which many young actors would kill their agent. "I did not have doubts when they offered it to me. I had incredible luck."

The role has, assuredly, three great benefits. One: he is a mythical character of one of the most popular literary sagas. Two: it gave him safe work and payment for a year and a half, or more. Three: "When I play him I use a blond wig, blue eyes and the long hair, when I am natural, I can walk calmly down the street without anyone recognizing me", he says.

He could maintain the trick with "Black Hawk Down" -much helmet, much dust on the face- but now, of course, that's finished. In Pirates of the Caribbean he is dark and with black hair, as they knew him in the neighborhood. Well yes, with a look a little more classic. In front of Clarėn he looks like a bad imitator of Depp: beard of some days, hair tediously messed up and too tight of a t-shirt.

"All the actors of my generation admire Depp - he says, without reserve- . He is brilliant. That character that you see on the screen he made by himself, it was not in the script."

"To see him act was to learn every day".

You spoke with him about facing the fame?

"There are no guides about how to face this task. One learns day by day, and to take things as they come. With Johnny we spoke much, and were always left with the same: do not take it seriously, keep near to the real things."

And how do you do that?

"When I have time I try to return to my house in England and to do normal things, to be with my friends, my family, to ride my motorcycle. I love riding my motorcycle."

How is your relationship with fans?

"It's good, thanks. They send me thousands of letters. I appreciate it, but I can't answer them. The truth is that I'm not a sex symbol. I'm flattered they think so but, believe me, I don't feel like one, a few years ago no one saw me that way."

Bloom claims not to be romantic ("Not much, bah, yes in the small things"), but I was educated to be a gentleman with ladies ("That I learned from my mother '"). He says that he loves to kiss the girls on screen, but he does not think about that at the time of choosing a role. That he, a difference to Depp, didn't make a special effort at interpreting the role of the intrepid Will Turner ("It's a movie about pirates, no need for great depth"), but yes, he took classes on fencing with a veteran master who trained Errol Flynn.

"He taught me the most difficult part, which is to maintain the character while fighting" - he says. "Because one tends to want to fight their own way. But I was learning it.

"I had a few bruises and cuts, but nothing serious".

Why do you always look for work in great films?

"It isn't a conscious search. One of the reasons that I studied acting was because I dreamed to be able to interpret characters "greater than the life". Superheroes, pirates, those things. I loved Superman. But also, what interests me in these films, is that they position you to be in a place from where you have more opportunities to choose projects."

The pirates characterize themselves to break rules. What is the most "pirate" thing you have done in your life?

"I also break rules, but nothing that can hurt other people. I don't know... they gave me many tickets for speeding. Does that count?"