There are moments when time stands still. Moments where you find yourself on the verge of greatness. Moments that stand the test of time. The Edge is a series of conversations where extraordinary people tell intimate stories of one moment that changed everything for them. A world record, a world championship, an epiphany, a life-changing decision. They relive their moments, minute by minute. How they overcame pressure, fear, pain and pushed themselves to the limit. To The Edge.
In this episode, you’ll hear from not just one, but two stellar actors: Jacob Elordi and Patrick Dempsey. The 24-year-old Euphoria star Jacob Elordi is already one of the stand-out talents of his generation. And we all know Patrick Dempsey. He isn’t just a revered actor, he is also a race car driver and a motorsport enthusiast. Their shared love for cinema and race cars meant that we had to find the perfect stage to bring them together. And that’s why we recorded this podcast at the 2022 Monaco Grand Prix.
Presented by your host Teo Van Den Broeke, Style Director of British GQ, you’ll relive the moments that shaped Elordi and Dempsey’s careers. You’ll also hear about what drives them, what inspires them and what their biggest goals are.
Attention: Only have a minute?
Here are a few snippets to put you on the starting line and get the adrenaline pumping. But don’t forget to subscribe to our Podcast so you can listen to the full, unfiltered episode later. The Edge is a series of conversations with extraordinary people operating at the edge of possibility. It’s about the thin line between taking part and tipping into victory; it’s about what gives us our edge and what we can do to go beyond it.
The moment they fell in love with cinema
Jacob Elordi: I remember at 12, I was allowed to get an MA 15+ movie. So I just went straight to the horror section and I would get these just awful, gory, terribly-made films. And that was when I fell in love with movies. The process of having the DVD, taking it out and putting it in the machine.
Patrick Dempsey: It was right before Thanksgiving break at school. In the cafeteria, they were going to show Great Expectations. David Lean’s Great Expectations. I remember just being absorbed by that film and how beautifully it was shot, how dark and scary that film was.
What made them pursue a career in acting
Patrick Dempsey: I was in a vaudeville troupe, I was juggling and doing slapstick, and I was performing. Then I was invited to do a play. That’s when I got the bug, at this dinner theater. I turned 17, and I remember thinking it would be great if I could do this professionally. And then things started to unfold. But I remember that moment distinctly. I come from a very small town in rural Maine, where no one really breaks out of that. And people were like, “You might do more dinner theater. You can do some performing with the vaudeville troupe. But you probably won’t make it.” I ended up doing a little town competition with the juggling comedy and an agent said, “You should come to New York for this talent competition”. I did that, raised enough money from the local neighborhood to fly down to New York. And I got an agent. That’s how it all started.
Jacob Elordi: I was living in Melbourne in high school and I read Beckett’s Waiting for Godot. I obviously didn’t understand it at all! But I remember feeling a certain way at school and for some reason, reading that play…something clicked, something changed. Then I did a production. I did Romeo & Juliet and I played Mercutio. And that was the first time that I really felt like I had the audience on a string. I felt like myself for the first time ever. And I felt so alive. From those two moments, I didn’t know how to do anything else. Nothing else really brought me joy. Nothing else interested me.
Is self-criticism one of the keys to success?
Jacob Elordi: I quite enjoy being highly critical of myself. It makes me demand a certain quality of work. It’s kind of like my own meter. And I have this level for myself, that I have to reach or surpass. That keeps me interested in the work. And I feel like I’m asking people to take time out of their day to watch my work. So I better give a certain level of truth, dedication and time to the stuff that I’m putting on the screen.
Patrick Dempsey: I think it’s a constant evolution, you know what your strengths and weaknesses are. And you try to improve each time you have a project. Working on that [your weaknesses] a little bit more and refining it, and just really focusing on the process. Being more fully immersed into that. I think that helps.
Their first acting performances
Jacob Elordi: I think I might have been 12 or 13. I played the Cat in the Hat in Seussical: The Musical, which I think to this day stands as one of my better performances. Really, it was completely uninhibited and free. This teacher, I was a little bit rambunctious, and she was like, “You have to play the Cat in Seussical.” And I was like, “Absolutely not.” And then my mom kind of pushed me to do it. There was singing and dancing involved, which now I would curl into a small ball and hide from. Yeah, terrifying.
Patrick Dempsey: I did this summer theater camp in northern Maine, and it was an original production. I was playing the hook to a rabbit and I had to sing and dance and do all of that. And I just remember being part of the group and it was a lot of fun. I enjoyed the total immersion in the summer, where you’re just waking up in the morning dancing, singing, working on plays and musicals and things like that. That was really fun. And that’s where the bug really hit.
The similarities between race car driving and acting
Patrick Dempsey: There’s a rush before you get in the car. It’s the same thing, like stepping on stage. And also, if you are well known, there are a lot of eyes on you. So you have to learn how to block that out. But it’s the camaraderie and the fellowship and then how far you can push yourself. I think it’s an internal battle with oneself and then it’s a real dance with your fellow competitors.