‘The Host’ Stars Jake Abel and Max Irons Talk ‘Twilight’ Comparisons

Max Irons and Jake Abel (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Just days before the release of their new sci-fi flick “The Host,” adapted from “Twilight” author Stephenie Meyer‘s novel of the same name, stars Jake Abel and Max Irons are preparing for the immense amount of fame that often accompanies high-profile films.

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“It’s a bit odd,” Abel, the 25-year-old best known for his role in the “Percy Jackson” films, told me during a recent interview. “I couldn’t imagine not being able to go to my local movie theater or grocery store. That is part of my everyday life that I hold very dear. It would be hard to see that go.”

His co-star, 27-year-old Max Irons, son of beloved actor Jeremy Irons, agrees, but doesn’t believe they will be plagued with constant media attention like their Meyer-spawned predecessors.

“I heard a story about Robert Pattinson being chased through the streets of Paris by a hoard of girls before he even started filming the first ‘Twilight,'” he said. “That certainly hasn’t happened to us. I think it is a different case.”

“The Host,” which is now available with XFINITY On Demand, centers around a society that has been invaded by Souls, parasitic aliens with the ability to posses human minds.

The Andrew Niccol-directed movie stars Saoirse Ronan as Melanie Stryder, a girl whose body is taken over by a Soul called Wanderer. Stryder gets caught up in an odd and confusing love triangle with both Abel and Iron’s characters.

Ronan and Irons in 'The Host'

“The first time you come across my character, I’m on the run and I assume that all my fellow humans have died out. I discover Melanie Stryder, who is also on the run, and fall in love with her,” Irons says of his character Jared Howe. “She is taken from me and becomes a Soul. Then she comes back, looking physically like everything I know and love, except everything I know and love has disappeared.”

Abel plays Ian O’Shea, one of the few surviving humans who also falls in love with Stryder, but only after her body has been possessed.

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“My initial instinct is to kill any alien on contact, except for this one alien, played by Saoirse Ronan, who I start to fall in love with,” Abel said. “I see she contains a sense of humanity and kindness.”

The pair of actors, who cite sci-fi classics such as “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” among their favorite movies, were excited to join the cast of “The Host.”

“This was different than any other young adult adaption that I have been a part of or seen,” Abel said. “It was on an elevated level that really separated it from the pack. “

Abel in 'The Host' (Photo: Open Road)

They were, however, fully aware of the inevitable “Twilight” comparisons.

“I actually saw something in the newspaper in England which was titled Which of these films will be the next ‘Twilight’? It listed 12 young adult adaptions, half of which have nothing to do with ‘Twilight,'” Irons said. “The only common denominator is that they have young people in it. It’s not so much that films are similar to ‘Twilight,’ but that people are interested by the phenomena that ‘Twilight’ caused because there has never been anything like it, and I don’t think we will see anything like it again.”

Abel and Irons didn’t let the possibility of “Twilight”-esque mania stop them from joining the Myer’s next big-screen adaptation.

“The work is what is important, and what comes after is really out of our hands and out of our minds. It’s all about the work,” Abel said. “If it allows us to work with the filmmakers we want to work with, then it is a necessary evil to be able to work with the caliber of people we want to work with.”

Irons, who hails from Britain, was especially dedicated to the flick. He had to get his driver’s license to perform certain stunts in the movie, which turned into a memorable (and scary) experience for the actor.

“Unlike America, where everyone pretty much gets their license when they are 16, in London there is no point because it takes twice as long to get anywhere,” he said. “I got it here and there was one day where we had to drive this truck. And it was all well and good when I was doing it by myself, but then they put Jake and Saoirse in. I felt very responsible for their lives.”

 “The Host” is now available with XFINITY On Demand. Click here to begin the ordering process.


The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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