Actor Javier Bardem received a lot of recognition for his role as the villainous Anton Chigurh in No Country for Old Men.
But to some like Julia Roberts, his performance might have seemed a bit too real.
Julia Roberts was terrified of working with Javier Bardem because of ‘No Country for Old Men’
Julia Roberts and Javier Bardem once teamed up for the 2010 romance drama Eat Pray Love. The film was based on the best-selling memoir of the same name, and featured Bardem as Roberts’ onscreen love interest. According to The Japan Times, Bardem was more than excited to join the leading men who’ve already acting alongside Roberts.
“Oh, how does it feel? Yes, wonderful! They make me the offer, I have to wait a few seconds before I say ‘yes.’ I didn’t shout, ‘Si, si, si, claro que si, hombre!’ — but that’s how I felt,” Bardem said.
But on the flip side, the Oscar-winner asserted she was a bit nervous collaborating with her co-star. Bardem had already garnered massive attention thanks to his performance as serial killer Anton Chigurh in No Country for Old Men. His acting in the film was too chilling for Roberts, however. Sometimes all Roberts could think about was Anton when working alongside Bardem.
“It’s been well reported that I was a little terrified to be around him after No Country For Old Men and I’m sorry to say at one point that he pulls out a picture of him from [that movie]. I’d just gotten a grip on the way he really looks and then he gets me back,” Roberts once told Teen Hollywood (via Digital Spy).
Julia Roberts ended up loving working with Javier Bardem
It turns out that Bardem couldn’t have been further from his No Country counterpart. So after working with Bardem for a long time, Roberts quickly realized there was little to worry about in regards to her co-star. Something that she let the Skyfall actor know personally.
“He comes across as incredibly comfortable with his acting and his performing. It really does put you at ease,” she recalled. “I said to him near the end, ‘I thought you’d be so intense and broody and weird. I’d have to be handling you and stuff, and you’re so sweet and funny and this was so easy’. He goes, ‘I’m not normally. I just wanted to try it once to see how it works’. I said, ‘I’m really glad that you did.’”
Javier Bardem terrified himself while watching ‘No Country for Old Men’
Roberts wasn’t the only Eat Pray Love star that Bardem ended up terrifying. Bardem confided that he also found watching himself as Anton terrifying. But the source of his fear was vastly different than Roberts’.
“I mean I terrify myself because I thought I was wrong, but not because I was scary. I mean I find the need of performing for an actor is something that is obvious. The need of watching the performance that he does is not something that is not obvious at all. You have to deal with that, but you don’t want it really bad,” Bardem once told Collider.
But Bardem asserted that being cautious about seeing themselves onscreen was common among his fellow actors.
“I don’t know any actor or actress that really likes to see themselves. So, I’m like that. I prefer not to see it,” he said.