Who Adrien Brody
Accomplishments Stars as Harry Houdini in History’s two-part biopic, Houdini (airs Sept. 1 and 2 at 9 p.m.); winner of the Academy Award for Best Actor in The Pianist (2002); founder of Fable House production company
Base New York and Los Angeles >
What’s the first information you consume in the morning?
I try to gather my thoughts and then I turn to my emails because I’m usually on location and there’s a massive time difference. So I have to deal with whatever’s urgent before I go off and disconnect.
How do you get your news when you’re on location?
On my iPad, usually. I’ll check out The New York Times online, CNN, Huffington Post. I’m not really religious about it. It’s interesting talking about technology because I was in the Gobi desert recently and there was only sporadic Internet, and limited at that because there were firewalls up everywhere. So the information that came in was also very limited.
Are you on social media?
No. I do feel like most people seem surprised that I’m not, especially if they have relationships with me online through my numerous fraudulent Facebook monikers [laughs]. I think that there’s a conception that actors are constantly seeking ways to be visible, but it’s something that takes a lot of time to manage carefully. I do contemplate Instagram because I love photography and I love sharing personal moments—I don’t mind that aspect of it—but there is something about doing too much social media that doesn’t really work for me, personally.
What’s your favorite app?
I have an iPad app that I love called BeatMaker 2 that’s a music production tool that’s remarkable. It’s 20 bucks, and it’s a mini studio. Technology is pretty incredible. I’ve been making music for 20-something years, and I have all this equipment that’s basically collecting dust because my laptop and iPod can do so much.
How do you listen to music?
Pandora is great. It doesn’t work out of the country, unfortunately, so I haven’t had it at my disposal for some time. I’ll usually buy stuff online, which is the easiest way to get my hands on music. I just did a DJ gig, so I had to stock up on a bunch of new music, which was exciting. And I actually bought a DJ app for my iPad, which I taught myself to use.
What have you been listening to lately?
Lately I’ve been getting inspired by the ‘20s and ‘30s, so I’ve been listening to a lot of Al Bowlly and music of that era.
What’s on your reading list?
I just read a wonderful book, a novel by Dalia Sofer called The Septembers of Shiraz, which takes place during the fall of the Shah, about a family that’s pulled apart when the husband is abducted by the Revolutionary Guard. I made [a film based on the book] recently, and when there’s a novel or any reading material that’s inspirational to the story—just like memoirs of [Wladyslaw] Szpilman that led to [Roman] Polanski’s film The Pianist—it’s very helpful for finding clues into the character that may have not made it into the screenplay.