Channing Tatum covers the new issue of T magazine.
On his outlook of the world: “I’ve always negotiated the world very physically, from football to tussling at the playground to taking my clothes off. My dad’s a physical guy. I think that’s how I wanted to see myself as a kid, how I won approval, and it’s no secret that that’s how I got into this business. But over time I’ve been able to develop other aspects of myself, sort of on-the-job training.”
On ADHD and dyslexia: “I have never considered myself a very smart person, for a lot of reasons. Not having early success on that one path messes with you. You get lumped in classes with kids with autism and Down Syndrome, and you look around and say, Okay, so this is where I’m at. Or you get put in the typical classes and you say, All right, I’m obviously not like these kids either. So you’re kind of nowhere. You’re just different. The system is broken. If we can streamline a multibillion-dollar company, we should be able to help kids who struggle the way I did.”
On the arts: “It’s just weird that for some people art is a luxury. My parents had no artistic outlet. Some people pass down music to their kids, but I couldn’t tell you what my mom’s or dad’s favorite song is. So when I started going out into the world, I was drawn to people who knew about movies, art, even fashion. I went to New York and did the whole modeling thing, and I just learned everything I could from anybody who knew something I didn’t. I’ve had a few John du Ponts in my life, to be honest. I think that’s one thing I’m pretty skilled at. I can look at a person and say, ‘They’ve got something that I want up there in their head. I’m going to do my best to get in there and absorb it. My mom said, ‘Be a sponge.’ And so I’ve learned more from people than I have from school or from books.”
On being a father: “You notice your behavior, like, Wow, I don’t have much patience right now. Why is that? You spend the day watching this thing constantly taking in information, and you have to be sure you’re making that happen. At the end of the day when I put her to bed, I feel glad to have some peace but say to myself, That was so much fun.”
On playing a real person: “It felt like a sensitive situation because Mark Schultz really wanted me to get everything correct. In a two-hour movie I’m never going to be able to show everything about a person, but I tried to grasp the most poignant things and to imbue them into the film. Mark didn’t expect to like it, though it turned out that he did. He was just hoping he’d be relieved, and I think maybe he wanted to get some justice. I’m not sure it’s full enough of that stuff for him — all the stuff that people did to him, terrible, terrible things. The movie doesn’t do that. It shows these relationships that are complicated and beautiful and horrible.”
On taking risks: “Personally, I like being pushed into corners. It forces you to be creative. Being a stripper exposed me to a lot of people I might never have met, and that has turned out to be a gift. There are a lot of characters I feel I can play as a result. So when people tell me they want to act, I’m like, Okay, if you want to act, go see America. If you can afford gas money, go talk to people and see how they really live. Sure, you can go to theater class at a young age. That’s not how I did it. I would have loved to learn things earlier than I did, but then maybe I wouldn’t have gone and done the things that gave me insight into what it is to be human – to have fears and wants. Like the fear of asking a girl out on a date when I can’t afford dinner at Chili’s, so instead maybe we go to Checkers and I make it cool by turning it into a picnic, put the burgers in a basket of my mom’s and try to make it romantic. That’s the kind of worry I used to have.”
Follow @Music_IntheDark on Twitter