Like Marc Maron if Marc Maron was a horrible person with terrible opinions, Bret Easton Ellis has launched to the top of the podcasting tree with his hugely popular The Bret Easton Ellis Podcast. And even those of us who aren’t much fan of the man’s work must grudgingly admit that it’s become something of a must-listen: Ellis has a wide-ranging mix of guests, including some that would never be booked by anyone else, and a real facility for getting great conversation out of them.
The latest person to stop by, as reported by Yahoo Movies, is one-time Hollywood golden boy Alex Pettyfer. Once touted as Hollywood’s next big thing, with roles in YA movies like “I Am Number Four,” Pettyfer hasn’t been seen much in the last few years, sitting out this year’s “Magic Mike XXL,” the sequel to his biggest hit “Magic Mike,” with rumors flying for some time that Pettyfer had alienated co-stars, filmmakers and executives during production on both that and other movies.
Those rumors, Pettyfer tells Ellis, are mostly correct. “I had a very negative past relating to the things that I had done on movies and the promotion of movies,” he says. “I actually did my work and I sat in the corner and listened to music because I had been told anything I did was wrong by my reps… That also gave me a bad rep because everyone was like ‘Alex doesn’t speak because he thinks he’s better than everyone else.’”
But things boiled over with co-star Channing Tatum when Pettyfer refused to pay the rent on an apartment he’d been leasing from a friend of the A-lister, in part, he says, because he was grieving the death of a family member. “All of a sudden, I got a very negative email from Channing — rightfully so — saying, ‘Don’t fuck my friends. You owe money. Pay the fucking money. Don’t be a clown.’ And I really took that the wrong way, which I shouldn’t have, and emailed him back and said, ‘I’m in a real negative headspace and can you respect me for a moment and blah, blah, blah.’ And I just got hounded through this time of grieving for money. By the end of it, I just basically said, ‘Fuck them, what is money when life is so much more, I’m not paying.’ And I should have just paid.”
It’s a disarmingly honest conversation, one that’s both defensive and suggests that Pettyfer might have learned from his mistakes, saying that both Tatum and director Steven Soderbergh helped cause “the end of my immaturity.” Whether or not the actor can find his way back into the spotlight remains to be seen, but he does have a new movie coming up, co-starring with Kevin Spacey and Michael Shannon in the upcoming “Elvis & Nixon.” You can listen to the whole interview below.