Owen Wilson is the cover star of the new September issue of Esquire magazine. In his first major sit-down in more than a decade, Wilson opens up about fatherhood, death, life in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Agent Mobius, his film ‘The French Dispatch’ (set to release on October 22), and more.
On appreciating his life at the moment: “I’ve been in sort of a lucky place of feeling pretty appreciative of things, I know everything’s kind of up and down, but when you get on one of these waves, you’ve gotta ride it as long as you can. I’ve just felt—yeah. Feeling pretty grateful. Well, grateful’s one of those words that get used all the time. Appreciative. Of, you know, stuff.
On life’s dark moments: “As a kid, there’s a lot of things that you think about. Death—that kind of landed with me when I was about eleven. And I don’t remember ever talking with my parents about it. Although I do remember one time saying to my dad—and I remember exactly where in the house—saying, ‘I worry about dying,’ and seeing my dad turn away and catch himself. And I was surprised to see that reaction. But who knows, maybe that was part of why I said it.”
On his is view of life through films: “Sometimes it seems like life is being played by Gene Hackman in Hoosiers. Tough but fair. He’s going to demand a lot, but if you play as a team and do your job, things work out. That’s a good feeling. Things make sense. But of course, sometimes life seems to be played by Tom Hardy in The Revenant, some nightmarish guy trying to kill you, where even if you get the upper hand, he’s still going to be there at the end whispering, ‘This ain’t gonna bring your boy back or your dad back or any good times from your past back.’ Or whatever. And when life’s being played by that guy, you just gotta hang on and wait for it to pass.”
On sticking with your gut: “The worst thing you want to be accused of as an artist or a creative person is being pretentious. Or what you said, masturbatory. Same thing. But I just think that sometimes to do something—to say something—you have to risk people saying, “Oh, that’s kinda bullshit, what that guy did.” Sometimes you have to just walk through that fear and just try to tell it.”
The September issue of Esquire will be available everywhere August 24.
Cover: Suit and Shirt by Gucci
Image 1: Jacket by Hermès | Vintage Shirt and Tank, available at the Society Archive | Trousers by Nanamica | Hat by Gladys Tamez Millinery | Vintage Belt, available at Stock Vintage
Image 2: Jacket and Trousers by Brunello Cucinelli | Vintage Shirt, available at the Society Archive | Shoes, stylist’s own | Socks by Pantherella
[Photo Credit: Mark Seliger/Esquire Magazine]