With a bone structure that competes with the likes of Brad Pitt and those green-grey-blue eyes (and did we mention the British accent?), Douglas Booth is, by all measures, a good-looking fellow. In fact, it’s difficult to not stare at the 21-year-old, who befittingly played the lead in Julian Fellowes’ 2013 film adaptation of Romeo and Juliet.
But don’t be so quick to judge Booth by his looks. Within a few minutes after meeting him, the genuine sense of wonder with which Booth approaches his surroundings becomes apparent. When he visited the InStyle offices last week, questions of his own abounded: “What other publications are a part of Time Inc.? How does the editorial process unfold? How long have you worked here?” Along the way we managed to get the scoop on Booth’s latest project, Jupiter Ascending, an epic science fiction adventure that hits theaters July 25.
What was working alongside Channing Tatum and Mila Kunis like?
They are two of the coolest people on the planet! Channing is just the biggest dude. We’d be sitting in the hair-and-makeup chair and he would just start sending me links of things on the Internet to check out. He’s so ridiculously big right now but he would just joke, “No one knows what’s going on yet, I’m just a big redneck” [laughs].
We watched the trailer and not much of the plotline is divulged. Can you break it down for us? Tell us more about your role but in layman’s terms.
Yes, the trailer ruins nothing! So basically there’s a whole other universe out there, sort of like a cross between Star Wars and The Matrix. Eddie Redmayne, Tuppence Middleton and my character are all part of a dynasty, tycoon family—kind of like the Royal Family meets the Rockefellers but in space. Our mother passes away, so the inheritance is completely up for grabs and as it turns out, Mila is linked to her in some strange way. We live on these battleships—think yachts, but in space.
The film is from the minds of Lana and Andy Wachowski, the people who created The Matrix, what was the audition process like? Did you have to read for them?
It was so nerve racking! I mean, I’m such a fan of The Matrix—it’s become part of our culture, almost like a doctrine and there is such a following of people who have been waiting for them to make their next major sci-fi flick. I flew from London, where I live, to L.A. and they were just incredible. I had recently finished work on the BBC miniseries Great Expectations and they were big Dickens fans. The royal wedding was also going on, so we had lots to talk about.
Wait, that was three years ago!
Yeah, I became semi-attached to this project pretty early on. When I auditioned I just sort of told myself, “You’re going to walk into that room and be that character.”
So are you the good guy or the bad guy?
Each character has different motivations—you’re not entirely sure with mine but take one look at Eddie Redmayne and you just know he’s pretty evil [laughs].
You and Eddie have both been in Burberry ads. Is that like a young male Brit’s right of passage?
I don’t know about right of passage but they have their ear to the ground and are always keeping a pulse of what’s coming up and who is new to the scene. I think Christopher Bailey, the creative director, is amazing and I’m comfortable with the team—they’ve been dressing me since I was 16. When I do my own wardrobe I try to wear a designer from each of the countries I’m visiting: Tom Ford for New York, Hugo Boss for Germany, Burberry for England.
Do you ever go on shopping sprees or splurge on clothes?
I love clothes and do sort of change my wardrobe a lot. But a thousand dollar jacket? I’d rather spend it on an experience, like traveling.