Russell Brand talks his way to Hollywood stardom

Wed Jun 2, 2010 3:50pm EDT
 
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By Christine Kearney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Unlike most emerging Hollywood stars, there's nothing Russell Brand won't talk about. At 34, he's practically already said and done it all.

The British, brash, self-confessed former sex, heroin and crack addict, whose pranks and antics included being forced to resign as a BBC radio host after lewd phone calls, is now rising through the ranks of Hollywood movie stars in roles that show off his famous, fast-talking ways.

This week he tests out his first major starring role on U.S. movie audiences in "Get Him to the Greek," which gives top billing to his old role as music pop star Aldous Snow from the 2008 film "Forgetting Sarah Marshall." It opens in U.S. theaters on Friday.

Brand says the character, who in the film takes a naive record label intern on a hedonistic descent into the world of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll, reminds him of his dark and wild days chronicled in his irreverent 2007 memoir "My Booky Wook."

"It's like being able to, for a very brief stint, live out the dark fantasies of the past that were troublesome to actually live the first time," he told Reuters in his usual tongue-in-cheek tone in a recent interview.

"Get Him to the Greek" -- a spin-off of sorts from "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" in which the Aldous Snow character was only one part of a broader story -- co-stars Jonah Hill as the intern (Aaron Green) who struggles to take Snow from London to Los Angeles for a concert at the city's Greek Theater.

Along the way, the pair get into tricky escapades and, of course, learn what is truly important in life.

DRAMATIC AND EMOTIONAL   Continued...

 
<p>Actor Russell Brand poses for a portrait while promoting the film "Get Him to the Greek" in New York May 18, 2010. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson</p>