Robert Carlyle has revealed how he turned down a milliondollar offer to repeat his Full Monty striptease for a TV advert.
The star admitted he was tempted, but rejected the massive pay-day because he could not have lived with himself.
He told the Sunday Mail: “I have been offered some serious money to do commercials and that was the most ridiculous one of all.
“Remember the Citroen advert where Claudia Schiffer came down the stairs taking off her clothes? They wanted me to do that!” The 48-year-old Scot – currently starring in the sci-fi TV series Stargate Universe – said the proposal was made when he was having his biggest box-office success with The Full Monty.
For the Oscar-winning movie, about unemployed steelworkers forming a male striptease act, Robert had stripped down to the altogether.
But he was left open-mouthed when invited to repeat the striptease for a telly ad.
He said: “I thought they were having a laugh. But they weren’t. They were serious – to the degree of seven figures.”
Robert, who lives in Glasgow with wife Anastasia and their three children, Ava, Harvey and Pearce, admits that for a moment or so he swithered about whether he should grab the deal.
He said: “That was a hard one – it took a long time to make my mind up. You think of the people round about you and how they’d react.
“You start to think whether you should just do it. But at the end of the day you say no because you are the one who has to face yourself.”
The actor, who recently sparked controversy after his lavish ad for Johnnie Walker whisky was released as workers were fighting for their jobs in Kilmarnock, also resisted the chance to be seduced by Hollywood.
He said: “After Trainspotting and The Full Monty, Hollywood was the road that many people said I should go on. But that was a red rag to a bull for me.”
Instead of trying to make it big in Hollywood, Robert opted for a wide range of roles – tackling everything from Hitler in The Rise Of Evil, the villain in Bond film The World Is Not Enough and an oddball army officer in cannibal drama Ravenous.
Robert said: “I have no interest in being a big star, but I have a great deal of interest in being the best actor that I can be. With each film I try to stretch myself a bit more.”
That philosophy has often meant travelling the world to appear in challenging, low-budget movies.
Robert was on location in Sofia, Bulgaria, filming action movie The Tournament when he told how he had turned down millions of dollars and opted for films that tested him.
In the movie, where he stars alongside XMen’s Kelly Hu and Ving Rhames from Mission: Impossible, he plays a priest who is fighting a drink problem and conflicts of faith.
Father Joseph McAvoy’s problems become even worse when he is unwittingly sucked into a fight to the death between 30 of the world’s most deadly assassins.
It’s an action-packed romp with tons of highoctane stunts and Robert reckons it gave him the closest shave of his film career.
He said: “I was hit on the head with the casing of a grenade. Thankfully it was not a live grenade but it was a real one.
“It bounced off the floor and hit me on the soft part of the temple. For about 20 minutes, I didn’t know where I was. I was conscious and talking but I think my brain had shut down.
“It wasn’t till I got back to the hotel 90 minutes later that I began to really feel the pain. “When I called Anastasia to tell her, there was a silence and then she said, ‘was there an explosion?’ She worries for me.” That’s no doubt because both Anastasia and Robert are fully aware that making movies can be a very dangerous affair.
He said: “The same night that the grenade hit me there was another accident and a guy got his legs broken and was in hospital for six months. That really shook me.”
Robert did some stunts for The Tournament, including getting behind the wheel of a doubledecker bus for an action sequence.
And it brought back memories of the 1997 film Carla’s Song when he played a bus driver who falls for a Nicaraguan exile.
The actor said: “I thought Carla’s Song would be the only time I would be called upon to drive a bus. But here the bus was waiting for me.
“When I looked at the controls it, all came back to me and so I asked if when it came to filming the scene if I could actually drive the bus.”
Before filming began, Robert met with priests so that he could make a realistic attempt at portraying a man of the cloth.
And he reckons that a change comes over you as soon as you put on a dog collar.
“Images from your childhood flood into your brain,” he said.
Robert revealed he had some bizarre inspiration for the way that he decided to portray this fallen priest. Robert troubled Tournament little He said: He said: “This will sound extraordinary, butmyinspiration came from Peter Sellers, Steve Coogan’s Alan Partridge character and Chic Murray. I am not trying to imitate those guys but I watched their style.” has ever believe any form “As a class – I never Robert made his big-screen mark as terrifying tough guy Begbie in Trainspotting and his recent films have include disaster movie Flood and zombie chiller 28 Weeks Later. I was dragged I never “I have trouble killings sectarianism Glasgow.
Despite a few greying hairs, he still looks in great physical shape to cope with the rigours of being a big-screen action man. But the actor laughs at the notion that he might prepare for any role by working out in the gym. He said: “If I started training for a film, I think my wife would leave because she’d think I must be having an affair.
“I stay in shape by being careful about what I eat. Every morning I have oatmeal and a couple of pints of a health drink made out of fish, apple, carrot and ginger.
“Later in the day, I will have live yoghurt with bran. And in the afternoon I will eat a lot of fruit.”
He wasn’t always so health conscious.
He added: “In my past I would kill for a fish supper. Every now and then I will have one, but half-way through it I suffer instant regret.
“Nowadays I have to admit I love sushi and I don’t eat a lot of stodgy food.”