Max Irons, Jake Abel talk 'The Host’
March 29th, 2013
04:47 PM ET

Max Irons, Jake Abel talk 'The Host’

First it was Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner; then came Liam Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson; and now it’s “The Host’s” Max Irons and Jake Abel who are making moviegoers swoon.

The stars of the latest Stephenie Meyer adaptation, about an alien species that inhabits the bodies of humans and steals their memories, recently told CNN that they don’t mind the “Twilight” and “Hunger Games” comparisons. However, they don't think they are entirely justified.

“It does not matter what film you’re making. If you’re young and there’s romance in the movie, it’s compared to ‘Twilight,’” said Abel, who plays Ian. “Everyone says it’s a love triangle … but there are four of us - because there are two people inside one woman. … It has depth.”

“It’s a bit of a geometric problem,” Irons joked.

Irons, who plays Jared opposite Saoirse Ronan’s Melanie, said that while people may refer to “The Host” as a romance, it’s not a love story from his character’s perspective. It’s more about learning to survive as a human being under such “deeply unfortunate” circumstances, he said.

On the other hand, romance is what drive’s Abel’s character.

“I originally wanted [to play Jared] because he’s big, action packed, shooting guns, driving cars, and I thought that’s what I wanted,” Abel said. “But I had a conversation with [director] Andrew Niccol before they wanted to bring me in for Ian. … He said that what interested him most was this inter-species love, because my character falls for the alien. … I hadn’t looked at it that way.”

Playing humans in the film, rather than members of the alien species like Saoirse’s character, both actors were thrilled not to be wearing contact lenses on set.

“They were taking eye drops between almost every take,” Abel said. “There’s a lens tech and it’s his sole job to take care of the lenses. He should have bought stock in eye drops because they needed them so much.”

For Irons, wearing contacts while filming 2011’s “Red Riding Hood” was enough.

“For the first week [on set], every time I put them on I’d pass out,” he said. “The idea of someone touching your [eye] with this tiny bit of plastic that could slip behind and go into your brain…”

Despite his contact lens phobia, Irons said he considers himself a professional on set. Of course, he has a great role model in his dad, actor Jeremy Irons.

“It’s a bit like your parents giving you driving lessons,” Irons said. “You know they’re always right, but its kind of inexplicably irritating. … He trusts me to get on with it in the world that we’re existing in at the moment and go with my instinct.”

"The Host" hits theaters today.

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