Jude Law shares big career regret now that he is ‘saggy and balding’

Jude Law has shared one of his career regrets, saying he wishes he didn’t “try to play against his looks” in his younger years now that, in his own words, he is “saggy and balding”.

The actor, 51, said he tried to subvert expectations of a handsome actor in his twenties.

As well as heartthrob roles such as player Dickie Greenleaf in The Talented Mr Ripley and a hot dad in The Holiday, Law did venture into more unconventional roles.

In the 1997 sci-fi film Gattaca, Law played a disabled former swimming star living in a eugenics-obsessed dystopia.

And in another movie that year, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, he starred in the role of Billy Hanson, a male sex worker killed by his partner, an art dealer played by Kevin Spacey.

For his latest role, in the historical drama Firebrand, he underwent quite a transformation to look like Henry VIII. He has been aged up for the role with a long silver beard and deep wrinkles.

In a new interview, he told DuJour magazine that he found it “satisfying” playing the unattractive character.

He said: “[When I was younger] I didn’t feel like I really ever leaned into playing handsome, but there were roles that required an attractive energy.

“I was trying to play against my looks in my early twenties, and now that I’m saggy and balding, I wish I had played it up.”

Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law and Matt Damon in ‘The Talented Mr Ripley’ (Alamy)
Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law and Matt Damon in ‘The Talented Mr Ripley’ (Alamy)

He added that, in recent years, he has taken on different roles that “have not leaned in to any sort of attraction”.

“It’s been satisfying not having to turn that switch on.”

Law stars in the new movie alongside Alicia Vikander, who portrays Henry’s sixth and final wife Catherine Parr.

He said: “It took so much time every morning to get into this huge, weighted costume and I would stay in it for the rest of the day.

“You could rehearse in jeans and a T-shirt, but then you would turn up in this enormous outfit and realise you’re going to knock everyone over. So you might as well maintain that sense of Henry’s shape and size.”

In a previous interview, Law had revealed that he wore an “awful” scent of “blood, faecal matter and sweat” to authentically portray Henry VIII in the movie.

“I read several interesting accounts that you could smell Henry three rooms away. His leg was rotting so badly. He hid it with rose oil,” Law said during the film’s press conference at Cannes Film Festival/

“I thought it would have a great impact if I smelt awful.”

Firebrand is out in UK cinemas on 14 June