Fighter fashions new role

Orlando Bloom in <i>The Three Musketeers.</i> Photo supplied.
Orlando Bloom in <i>The Three Musketeers.</i> Photo supplied.
Orlando Bloom is back on screen but now he's playing dress-ups, he tells AAP entertainment writer Caris Bizzaca.

After swashbuckling his way through the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, Orlando Bloom was happy to swap sword-fighting for "dress-ups" in The Three Musketeers 3D.

Known for his heroic roles in Pirates and The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Bloom plays the "dastardly" Duke of Buckingham in the new 3-D take on Alexandre Dumas' classic.

"I kind of had trodden that path [of the hero] before and it was great to do something a little different in this role and I thought the Duke of Buckingham was quite fun," Bloom said. "He's kind of a big petulant child."

And, unlike when he was a pirate or in Middle-earth, Bloom didn't even have one swordfight.

"I get blown up a little bit, but there's not a huge amount of stunt work for me," he said.

"But I think the boys did a very good job of displaying some pretty good sword skills."

The "boys" in reference were the three who did play the musketeers - Matthew Macfadyen (Athos), Ray Stevenson (Porthos) and Luke Evans (Aramis).

In Paul W.S. Anderson's 2011 take on the novel, the musketeers discover a conspiracy to overthrow France's King Louis (Freddie Fox).

Naturally, as elite soldiers who serve King Louis, they attempt to foil the plan with the help of aspiring musketeer D'Artagnan (Logan Lerman).

Anderson's wife, Milla Jovovich, is along for the ride as the manipulative Milady de Winter, while seminal baddie Christoph Waltz is back as, well, a baddie.

Bloom says that in the big scheme of things, Buckingham is not really evil, but "he represents the power of the British empire, so he's a bit of a stirrer".

On the receiving end of that mischief is King Louis, who Buckingham enjoys humiliating by constantly beating him in the fashion stakes.

The topic of fashion is probably more suited to Bloom's Australian supermodel wife, Miranda Kerr, the mother of their 9-month-old son Flynn.

However, the movie saw Bloom donning what he called "dress-ups" - flamboyant hairstyles, puffy costumes and even heels.

"A big pompadour haircut and a heel and a bright purple [costume], or a bright blue or whatever, definitely lends itself to the character," he said.

"You never know what you're going to look like, but I knew [from the script] it was going to have something quite outrageous."

Bloom said he liked the script because it was contemporary and irreverent, despite being such a well-known tale.

"For example, I come off an airship, and it's like 100 years too soon for an airship, but it works really well for the film," he said. "A little bit of movie magic and artistic licence and it kind of works."

Bloom said the story of The Three Musketeers seems to be retold for every generation.

"It just speaks to every generation, in a way, and this being a 3-D kind of extravaganza, it's certainly going to the one for our generation."

While Bloom didn't find shooting in 3-D to be drastically different from a normal set, he said audiences really seemed to be enjoying the end result.

"It's one of those crazes of the moment, isn't it, 3-D? And it seems that everything has to be shot in 3-D to get people to come out and have the experience at theatres."

Bloom is also shooting Peter Jackson's The Hobbit in 3-D, but he isn't sure whether the fad will stick around for good.

"It's certainly having a good crack at it. I think it depends on the movie; it's hard to say."


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