Damian Lewis Doesn’t Like Comparisons Between ‘Billions’ Character And Donald Trump, Admits To Having Anger Issues

Damian Lewis has had enough of people asking him to link his fictional billionaire character on his hit series “Billions” to Donald Trump.

“‘Billions’ isn’t interested in going in after the current events story in an overt way,” he tells ES Magazine.

Lewis, who plays hedge fund king Bobby Axelrod on the series, says his show is much more believable than the headlines.

“It’s authentic because it makes sure that the stories are authentic, believable versions of things that really happened: the deals that are made, the companies that are bought and sold, the asset stripping that goes on,” he explains. “So it is relevant and real and a reflection of what goes on in those worlds.”

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If Lewis is tired of the Trump question, he’s definitely had enough of the rumours he’s on the shortlist to play James Bond.

“By the time they make a decision [on Bond] I’ll be dead. So no one need worry anymore,” he says, adding that he believes Daniel Craig will return to the role for at least another outing as 007.

Photo: Tomo Brejc/ES Magazine
Photo: Tomo Brejc/ES Magazine — Photo: ES Magazine Tomo Brejc

The 45-year-old Brit admits he suffers from a quick temper, something he says has roots in his early boarding school days.

“I do have a temper.  There is a latent anger in a lot of people that went to boarding school at an early age. I was eight. And I loved it over the five years, but I think the adjustments for eight-year-olds are a lot. And I think it informs who you are for a long, long time,” he says.  Lewis attended Eton College, the same prestigious boarding school as Prince William and Prince Harry, as well as actors Eddie Redmayne, Dominic West and Tom Hiddleston.

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However, the actor has learned to deal with his anger.

“But if you learn a mechanism that early to deal with situations that are foreign to you — trying to find your place within a group — you naturally suppress a lot of your own instincts. And I think exercising that amount of control is very clearly related to outbursts of anger later on,” he says, revealing he now turns to soccer as a release for his anger.

“I enjoy the total absorption in a white ball and 10 other guys and the focus, and the way it releases everything else from your mind,” he says.  “It’s brilliant, it’s the best occupational therapy I can think of. You run around and get fit and it releases any anger or tension that you have. I used to play at 7:30 a.m. on Thursday mornings in New York. I’d haul myself out of bed, even if I’d had a night shoot that finished at 2 a.m. and go and play. I love it.”

The full interview appears in this week’s issue of ES MagazineThursday, Feb. 2.

Photo: Tomo Brejc/ES Magazine
Photo: Tomo Brejc/ES Magazine — Photo: Tomo Brejic/ES Magazine

 

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