Linda Fuller/ ETonline.com
Russell Brand used to share similar vices with his drunken, on-screen character in the remake of 'Arthur,' opening one week from Friday, and the funny man shared with Chris Jacobs how his own playboy past resurfaced in filming the movie.
Russell's dilemma on set was figuring out a way to bring authenticity to the role of a drunk without returning to that lifestyle, and he came up with a safe solution.
"What I used to do - with great caution - is I'd carry a bottle of rum or whiskey or tequila around and before each take I'd take a big nose full of that stuff and it would evoke much more the giddy, wild memories of when I was a boozer," Russell said. The actor continued, unveiling the co-stars who copied his technique. "It became kind of like an on set thing," said Russell. "Jennifer Garner was smelling booze before things. Helen Mirren smelling booze before things... It was like 'New Jack City.' It was an epidemic of booze smelling."
In 'Arthur,' Russell plays the title role of billionaire drunkard Arthur Bach - a complacent and mischievous character who finds a new desire to take charge of his life when he falls in love with a New York City tour guide (Greta Gerwig).
Outside of his dark past, Russell also identified with the role on a more positive level, comparing his relationship with wife Katy Perry to Arthur's love story.
"That's again why I love this film, 'Arthur,' because it's about the transformative effects of love," said Russell. "Once you fall in love it gives you a new sense of purpose and that's exactly what happened to me. I think it takes a woman to make you a man sometimes."
"I loved working with him," said Dame Helen Mirren, who plays Russell's nanny in the movie. "It was exhausting; it was entertaining; it was exciting; it was scary. It was a complete roller coaster."
'Arthur' hits theaters April 8. Click the video to see what Russell says about possibly starting a family with Katy Perry.