By Alynda Wheat and Paul Chi
Updated May 27, 2013 12:00 PM


In Star Trek Into Darkness, you’re one intimidating villain. What’s your real personality like?

I’m a softie. I well up when I see the backstories of people’s rise to fame on reality shows. I’m a sentimentalist and easily manipulated by all the tricks in the book. But it’s important to show your emotions when you connect with something.

What did you do to prep for the role?

I was eating 4,000 calories a day and had an arduous regime to build muscle. I went up four suit sizes, from a 38 to a 42, in a month and a half.

Your loyal female fans call themselves the Cumberbitches. What’s it like to be a sex symbol?

I’m really flattered by it. Cumberbabes or Cumbercollective might be a better name. If my 17-year-old self could have known this would have happened, I would have been less insecure. I used to look in the mirror and say, “What am I going to do with myself? How do I get girls?” I was shy and didn’t know if I was attractive on any level. I wish I could tell that guy not to worry. But I don’t take it too seriously. I wear it lightly.

Do you have any hidden talents?

[He starts reciting Hamlet from Act II, Scene 2 from memory.] I very much enjoy poetry and plays. I would never use it as a pickup line at a bar, though. That would be a weird way to make it an evening!

What do you do to unwind?

I love to dance. It’s fun to cut a few shakes on the dance floor.