Closer : LARRY (Clive Owen)

Clive Owen, who plays Larry, the handsome, self-assured dermatologist, played Dan in the original London stage production of “Closer.” When he heard Mike Nichols was interested in casting him in the film, he asked if he could play Larry instead. “I loved playing Dan, but going back and playing Larry was a real treat,” he says. “It was like starting all over again because when you play a part you see the whole thing through that character’s perspective. Now I had to reevaluate everything that I thought when I originally did it, switch everything around and see it from Larry’s point of view.”

One thing that hasn’t changed since he first read the play is his admiration for Marber’s material. “You don’t often get dialogue like this in movies. It’s wonderful to be able to get your teeth into some fantastic dialogue. It’s so meaty with four fantastic parts. Playing any of them would be great.”

“What’s important,” he continues, “is that you like all four characters. All the scenes are intense and for it to really work you have to keep swapping your allegiances. You have to keep empathizing and sympathizing with both sides.”

And that is entirely appropriate to the nature of the story, Owen reasons, “because it’s about human beings. It captures how people are behaving now, that’s what’s so exciting about it.”

Larry is someone who gets his heart broken in the story and resolves to never be hurt again, he contends. In defending himself, he winds up hurting others. “These four people fall in and out of love and show how brutal and tough that can be. By the end you wind up thinking, ‘Why do we do this to ourselves?’”