Thai-German model-turned-actor Mario Maurer is heating up the silver screen with his fresh face, boyish charm and award-winning acting talent. With a huge fan following in his home country, Thailand, Maurer is now all set to make it big in the region. Not just content to stay within the confines of the film industry, the leading man talks to Travel 3Sixty° about his plans for the future and his newest venture – his very own perfume.
Words : Chitra S
Maurer’s foray into the entertainment business began by chance when he was spotted by a talent scout in a Bangkok mall. At the tender age of 16, he began modelling, shooting commercials and appearing in music videos. Maurer’s dashing looks and bubbly personality led to ﬁlm offers and the young man starred in several Thai television soaps before making his silver screen debut playing the lead role in the Thai feature ﬂick The Love of Siam in 2007. For his role, Maurer picked up best actor awards at the Starpics Thai Film Awards and Cinemanila International Film Festival. The ﬁlm also garnered rave reviews and has made 25 year-old Maurer a household name in Thailand and the region.
WHICH DO YOU ENJOY MORE – ACTING OR MODELLING?
I think modelling is more expressive but I prefer acting because it’s more challenging to play different characters. It takes lots of energy and a subtle kind of communication to convince viewers that you are really the role that you play.
HOW DID YOU GET INTO THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY?
I shot my ﬁrst advertisement around the time I was 15 or 16 years old. I was walking around Siam (a mall in Bangkok) and was invited to a casting call by a talent scout. My ﬁrst acting role followed soon after.
DO YOU HAVE ANY FORMAL TRAINING?
I studied acting with Mom Luang Noi (esteemed Thai director ML Bhandevanop Devakula) but I believe acting is a progressive art. You have to develop your own techniques. I think you grow on the job and I still have much to learn.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB?
I like the challenge, especially of doing things I never did before or things I thought I couldn’t do. Achieving something I had previously thought impossible comes with a huge sense of accomplishment.
WHAT MAKES A GOOD ACTOR?
A good actor must really get into the character he/she portrays and must be able to pull off a convincing performance.
DO YOU SEE YOURSELF AS A ROLE MODEL TO TEENAGERS?
Because I’ve been working since a young age, I think I’ve developed a sense of responsibility and perseverance that are positive traits teenagers everywhere can emulate.
ARE YOU COMFORTABLE WITH YOUR ‘PRETTY BOY’ IMAGE?
I don’t mind it because I’m a pretty playful person at heart. In fact, I feel my image makes me more accessible to people.
DO YOUR LOOKS GET IN THE WAY OR DO THEY WORK IN YOUR FAVOUR?
It deﬁnitely gives me more screen time! I’ve been offered a variety of roles because of my looks so I consider myself blessed. In the ﬁ lm Chandara, I portrayed a man in his late 80s. Although it required lots of makeup, I’m glad I was still chosen to play the part.
“I like the challenges of my job, especially of doing things I never did before or things I thought I couldn’t do. Achieving something I had previously thought impossible comes with a huge sense of accomplishment.”
WHAT’S IT LIKE TO HAVE YOUR OWN PERFUME?
It’s very exciting! I’m glad to be the ﬁrst guy chosen by Bel Perfumes to create a signature scent. The team really devoted themselves to creating a quality product that reﬂects my personality. I enjoy doing things that go beyond acting and would be proud to have people wear my scent.
TELL US MORE ABOUT YOUR NEW FRAGRANCE
It’s designed as a men’s fragrance but I think women may also ﬁnd it appealing because of its clean, sweet scent. My signature fragrance, Mario Maurer, is now available onboard all Thai AirAsia ﬂights and in department stores across Thailand.
WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO ACHIEVE IN YOUR COLLABORATION WITH AIRASIA?
Firstly, I’m extremely happy to be working with Thai AirAsia and glad that they took an interest in me. Many of my fans abroad have asked me where they can purchase my perfume and this collaboration gives them, as well as AirAsia guests, the opportunity to pick up my signature scent onboard. I’m also excited at the prospect of ﬂying AirAsia and exploring Chongqing, China with 10 lucky guests (contest winners) in December. Updates of the trip will be posted on AirAsia’s Weibo (Chinese microblogging site), which will allow me to reach out to all my Chinese fans.
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 10 YEARS?
I’ll still be an actor and probably an entrepreneur too. The perfume is my ﬁrst foray into business, and I hope to work on many more such ventures in the future.