Brian Austin Green has reached a point in his life when he’s just rolling with whatever comes his way. Admittedly, this liberating paradigm shift didn’t happen overnight. But as Green explained when we had the chance to chat about his new short, Chasing Titles, he’s gotten pretty damn good at giving up control and letting the chips fall where they may.
“Whatever high horse I thought I was on, I’m off. Whatever soap box I’m on, I’m off,” he told us. “I’m just hanging out. I’m a working actor, and I roll with things as they come.”
Perhaps it’s that very thing that formed the basis for Green’s initial connection with his Chasing Titles character. Sure, Joe is a study in disaster and things certainly don’t end well for him, but it doesn’t make the guy any less relatable. In fact, it makes him more relatable in the overarching sense that this character is the cautionary tale — he’s what happens when you try to force your life to fit other people’s expectations.
“I think that’s what Ryan [Egypt, director] had in mind with the title Chasing Titles… that people are always chasing that next level, like, ‘What am I supposed to wear? What kind of watch should I have on? What kind of car should I drive?’ You do that forever,” said Green. “At the end of the day, you have to be confident in who you are. You have to make choices that appeal to you and that are the best choices for you. The other stuff is really meaningless. It doesn’t matter. You can drive anything — you can drive a delivery truck, and it’s fine. Or you can want more and make stupid choices trying to get more, or not.”
It’s precisely that sort of mentality that informs not only the way Green approaches roles today, but also the way he lives out all the moments in between.
And not in a pretentious, “I’m living my Zen” kind of way. Green comes across as a person who is unapologetically authentic. You get the sense that if he didn’t love acting so much, he wouldn’t bat an eyelash if it all just went away and what remained was a simple life kicking up surf on a beach somewhere with his wife and kids.
He’s the guy you want to grab a beer with and compare the war stories that inevitably come with being a parent or a partner. He’s got the kind of candor that cuts right through you, and yet it comes out refreshing in its lack of refinement.
He doesn’t pull any punches when talking about his personal life, although it’s abundantly clear he wouldn’t trade his chaos for the world.
“I have a 15-year-old [from a previous relationship], a 5-year-old, a 3-year-old and a 1-year-old — all boys. I really want a girl, but at the same time, there’s this thing where I understand men because I am one, so it makes it a little easier. Teaching a boy how to be a man and just giving advice, it’s advice that I can actually connect to. But, I’m fucked. Four boys? I’m fucked,” he says, laughing.
Although, when asked about how parents of young men can avoid making the same mistakes as his Chasing Titles character, the advice Green gives regarding his 15-year-old son begs to differ — with this parenting style, he should fare well (all boys or otherwise).
“I feel like at this age with him, the more I can just support him of, like, just being himself and doing what he loves,” shared Green. “For a kid, I think at Landon’s [Gimenez, who plays his son] age and my son’s age to know that no matter what they do, their father loves them.”
It’s a two-prong process, he explained, adding, “To me, leading up to 15, you instill core values in who they are and what’s right and what’s wrong. And at 15, it’s kind of like a bird in the nest. At some point, you have to just sort of push them out and let them fly or fall to the ground. You love them either way. You’ll fly to the ground and you’ll help them up if they need it. And if not, awesome.”
Green expresses similar sentiments about marriage: You throw as much love at it as possible and hope it sticks; but even if it doesn’t entirely take, it shouldn’t be considered a failure.
“Marriage is fucking hard,” he admitted. “Whether you’re in this business or whether you’re a food service worker or a flight attendant or who knows — it’s hard. Being married is just fucking tough… you know, there are days when you like each other, there are days when you hate each other, there are days when you need your space or you’re feeling this or that. It has nothing to do with the other person, but because you guys choose to share everything and be in each other’s lives, you feel that.”
Quick to point out his own misgivings, Green readily confesses that there are days his wife, Megan Fox (whom he gushes is a “great mom”), doesn’t want to be around him because he’s moody. Yet, that’s reality, right? No one is positive all the time, and relationships have growing pains.
So instead of dwelling on the what-ifs, Green chooses to let little victories measure out time like a metronome.
“I kind of feel like the fact that we’ve been together as long as we have is really amazing. And the fact that we have not only made it work, but we’ve made three amazing kids and, you know, we try every day to be the best parents we can be, that’s major,” he revealed
“It’s all about kind of finding your own style, and it’s hard,” he continued. “But I think if you make it for whatever time, fucking good on you for making it. It takes a lot of work. It’s harder than any other job I’ve ever had.”