Chris Pratt’s recent turn as an action star in movies like Jurassic World and Guardians of the Galaxy is a far cry from his previous roles, like the fun-loving Andy Dwyer on Parks and Recreation. His newfound movie star status has opened him up to a number of new roles, which may come from a star who Pratt says inspires him.
In a new interview with the Associated Press published on Thursday, Pratt admitted that he really admires Tom Cruise, a Hollywood heavy hitter who’s known for his action films, including the Mission Impossible franchise, as much as his depth of character in more dramatic films like Interview With a Vampire.
“One of the career goals that I have based on Tom Cruise is his reputation as being a really nice, positive guy who works hard,” Pratt told AP. “I’ve never actually met him, but I would like — if you’re going to leave a legacy, it’d be nice to have it be that people thought you were nice and easy to work with and you worked hard. I think that’s pretty cool.”
Pratt also admitted that he thinks Cruise is the best on-screen runner he’s ever seen. Pratt, on the other hand, is often self-conscious about his action scenes that involve running because of a childhood injury to his femur growth plate.
“My leg grew in a little funny,” he said. “So when I run, I run a little crooked. And if I run at top speed, there’s a high likelihood I will fall down. My high school football highlight tape was all just images of me falling down midfield, like I just tripped over my shoelaces or something. So that’s always a little bit of a concern for me.”
Pratt spoke to AP about his career (and running) goals after he met with seven athletes with disabilities who are part of Achilles International. This nonprofit group empowers athletes with disabilities to participate in mainstream running events; Pratt surprised these members with the news that Michelob Ultra, a beer brand for which he’s a spokesperson, wants to sponsor them for the 2018 New York City Marathon.
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If Pratt wants to gain a reputation that’s similar to Cruise’s, he’s well on his way to doing exactly that by proving that he’s a star on-screen and off.