Polly Vernon’s profile of Graham Norton for the New Zealand Herald is unlikely to leave a single reader “banjaxed.” As opposed to Norton himself, to whom Vernon at one point applies that descriptive to convey the talk show host’s reaction to a question about the perhaps-missed-opportunity of engaging a female sex surrogate.
Vernon and Norton are a match made in dazzling-wit heaven. The 51-year-old UK media star, who foresees exiting his BBC America talker in three years, says he is at peace with both not making it “big” in the U.S. and being less proactive than a certain year-older A-lister:
“Tom Cruise is supernaturally good at [being nice]. Nothing will prepare you for it. He is like an alien. He’s like someone from a different planet! So like, on the way in here, he’ll have met that manager guy, who did introduce himself to me, but I don’t remember his name. Tom will know it! And on the way out, he’ll thank him for everything. And then that guy will love Tom Cruise forever. We can be pleasant to him, but already we’ve messed up, because we don’t remember his name. And the difference is that.”
But surely we’re nicer people than Tom Cruise, I say. “Honestly? If the Tom Cruise thing is an act, it’s the best act I’ve ever seen,” Norton replies.
Later on in the piece, Norton talks about ex-boyfriends, explaining how he helped one negotiate a better book deal and made sure with another (former NYC love Kristian Seeber) that it would be OK to refer to Seeber in the new tome as “Bad Boyfriend.”
[Jacket cover courtesy: Hodder & Stoughton/Hachette]
Previously on FishbowlNY:
Graham Norton’s Summer: Broadway Musicals and a Second Autobiography