After his breakout role in "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," I became all sorts of obsessed with Freddie Stroma. He's just so darn god-looking. Ok, so that was a typo (should have read "good-looking"), but it's also incredibly accurate, which is I'm going to leave it.
But later this year Freddie will prove he's more than a killer smile and bangin' body in "A Cinderella Story: Once Upon a Song" -- a modern day update of the classic fable, co-starring Lucy Hale as his shoe-losing princess.
I caught up with Freddie to talk about the film, which sent him into a recording studio for the first time (hence the title). In addition to keeping my drooling at bay, we also talked about which Disney Prince he most often emulates, the end of "Harry Potter" and what it's like to find out there are oddly named Facebook Pages dedicated to you.
PopWrap: You get to sing in this movie, was that part of the appeal?
Freddie Stroma: Well, it was a fun script – a nice rom-com. But yes, I loved the fact there was singing involved, which is something I haven’t done at a professional level and found very cool. We got to go into a studio and have our own “singles,” which is pretty bizarre.
PW: What do you think it'll be like when you have an iTunes page?
Freddie: [laughs] That will be really bizarre. Very strange. I’ve never really considered singing over acting, so yea, that will be pretty strange.
PW: Did being in a studio and putting out a single make you think about singing on a more serious level?
Freddie: Maybe. There are plenty of actors who’ve caught the singing bug and vice versa, but with musical performers, you’re constantly a persona – which is something I love about acting: you play a character, you leave and you get to be yourself again. That’s something that gets revealed in interviews so I don’t know if I’d like the whole constantly being a persona if I’m performing or not. I think Luke is the singer in this scenario, not Freddie [laughs].
PW: Let's talk about Luke, who is he?
Freddie: He’s the son of a music producer – originally I think the character was going to be American, but they liked the fact I was English and it allowed them to have a fun, Simon Cowell-esque kind of father [laughs]. They quite liked having a harsh British music producer character, plus it adds to the whole Prince Charming thing.
PW: Level with me, why do British actors make better princes?
Freddie: [laughs] Well, we have royalty so there's something to base it off of. America doesn’t really have princes and princesses … except for Prince himself [laughs]. But mostly, it's the accent.
PW: Yea. Romance is just embedded. So when a girl hears “no, darling, wait” in a British accent, they think, “yes, I will wait for that.”
Freddie: Well, Americans always ask how much I love my accent and I don’t get that – I think I sound like a school teacher. I think you guys sound pretty cool. Plus, the Irish & Australians. They’ve got wicked accents. I think British people always sound like teachers.
PW: In terms of classic prince characters, do you have a favorite?
Freddie: I’ve always loved Aladdin [laughs]. I don’t think I was channeling him, per say in this film since it's set in modern day. But they all have that special kind of charm and swagger.
PW: This is the second Cinderella production you've been involved with [Freddie played Prince Charming in a 2010 Pantomine production in LA] coincidence or are the projects related?
Freddie: Coincidence. In England we have pantomime around Christmas for the kids, where you retell a fairytale in a stand-up comedy kind of way. I was doing the first American one, and it was during that I auditioned for this movie, so it was strange playing Prince Charming in that show and auditioning for the same role in this movie as well.
PW: Do you think it gave you any sort of advantage in the audition process?
Freddie: Well, I didn’t roll in wearing that costume – it’s very colorful – but it was nice, maybe on a subconscious level, to know that you’ve already got a hold on this character. They’re very different, but it probably gives you some more confidence.
PW: Like most Americans, I first got to know you after playing Cormac in "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" -- that's the kind of role that obliterates any anonymity an actor can have.
Freddie: Oh yea, it’s very strange. Before that I had done TV in England and independent films, so it was strange to suddenly go into the biggest movie franchise. It’s strange because people tell me I’m part of history now, which is a weird thought. I can't wait to see the last movie, it's sad and exciting at the same time. In terms of how it’s changed my life, I just had to leave Facebook because of the strange groups that popped up about me.
PW: What was the weirdest?
Freddie: There was one called Freddie Stroma Puts Me In A Coma [laughs] – which was pretty funny. I’m hoping that’s a good coma. I hope it’s not because I’m terribly boring.
"A Cinderella Story: Once Upon a Song" hits DVD Fall 2011
Photo: WireImage; Warner Bros