Paul Schneider: “You Don’t Have to be Good-Looking or in Perfect Shape”

Paul Schneider
(Image credit: Unknown)

The Daughter is a drama about family relationships, with a brilliant central performance by Paul Schneider. As an actor, physical appearance is more important than you may think – something Schneider knows all too well…

How would you rate your fitness on a scale of one to 10?

I’d say I’m a six. If 10 is Dolph Lundgren, then I feel like a six. My highest has been a seven or an eight, but my life has not been one of testing my body, you know?

Do you often undergo any physical preparation before taking on a role?

I mean there’s a lot of sh*t that I should do! It’s funny, I feel like I never got the memo on that one. Today the standards are ridiculously high – if someone is meant to be “normal” in a film; in real life they’re in fantastic shape, and if in the film they’re supposed to be in great shape; in real life they’re in alien, unnatural, amazing bionic shape. I’ll usually buy a book about fitness and not read it, and then do a clean sweep of the obvious offenders in the kitchen. Although when I’m in a movie, my role is often showing that any man can get the girl – you don’t have to be good-looking or in perfect shape. I feel like I’m there to link the normal guys to the Ryan Reynolds of the world. You don’t have to be like that – look at me, I can do these things too…

What do you do to motivate yourself?

You just have to make the future self more important than the present self. The present self just wants to sit and watch Long Way Round documentaries over and over again. I think once I can treat myself the same way I treat other people, then I’ll look like Dolph Lundgren.

How is your fitness fingerprint unique to you and your career?

Usually what gets me into the gym is the sheer terror of a sex scene next to a gorgeous woman. It seems to be that the main reason you go to the gym is because you want to look like you belong in this club full of really good-looking people, who you feel like you don’t belong with anyway…

The Daughter is in cinemas May 27

Former staff writer

Gary Ogden wrote for the print edition of Coach between 2015 and 2016, writing features, interviewing celebrities and covering entertainment. He has also written for ShortList.