Sarah Sands: Jude must learn the first Law of affairs

Share
Related Topics

The appeal to Jude Law of playing Hamlet must have been the absence of vulgarity. In the darkness of the auditorium he would be treated as a theatre actor rather than a soap opera. And, indeed, his performance was textbook perfect – a little cautiously so. I noticed he had a graceful athleticism about him, but put that to the back of my mind.

Anyway, Law kept himself in check and was mildly reproached by some critics for the lack of sexual chemistry with Ophelia. So that makes a change.

The newspaper coverage Law envisaged must have been on the lines of: "Triumphant return to the stage." In his worst nightmares, he cannot have imagined the Sun's headline last week: "Jude knows he's been a Bard boy." Instead of Shakespeare forming a barrier between the actor and the popular press, the playwright has become the journalist's friend. "Alas, poor Jude, he is not well" began the Sun story about Law and the American model Samantha Burke, who has announced that she is carrying his child.

It seems to me that Law has made several miscalculations, apart from the obvious one. He thought that a run at the Donmar West End would diminish the public appetite. On the contrary, Donmar is the Vogue of the theatre world, it could not be more glamorous. If Jude had wanted to be obscure, he should have opted for the Savoy – or, these days, I'm afraid, the Almeida.

Rachel Weisz received more global attention last week for her performance in Donmar's Streetcar Named Desire than for her film roles. Acting ability raises your market value. Jordan would have to work her way through the entire British Olympic team to match the news interest around Helen Mirren's Phèdre.

There is another lesson for Law. I see no point in confining yourself to high art professionally if you then behave like a perplexed footballer in your private life. Law is not peculiarly promiscuous or accident prone. There are many other actors who are worse behaved. That is why they are actors, rather than civil servants. What makes him a Law unto himself is that he does not restrict his sexual relationships to his own circle.

It is the oldest rule of affairs that they are only safely conducted with those who have as much to lose as yourself. If Law had stuck to his leading ladies, none of this would have happened. No gun-at-the-head PR announcements about his delight at becoming a father, no fresh hell from celebrity websites.

His delight at finding the sweet shop always open is almost Clintonian. He is famous and he is handsome: is he surprised that he can always find women to hand? It is not a question of morality, but of discretion, the very thing he most craves.

Samantha Burke is a young model and actress from Florida who has attended an acting course to equip her for commercials and soap opera. She is already chatting away on her website about the pregnancy and has apparently named the child in advance. This is not Jackie Kennedy.

Law's troublesome nanny similarly felt that she had nothing to hide about their relationship. It is no use him refusing interviews and covering his head with a beanie hat when the women with whom he mixes are singing like skylarks.

The irritation for Jude Law, apart from the money and the complication, is that his Hamlet has been eclipsed by the hammer and tongs. He knows now that there's no protection in privacy: if only he had practised exclusivity.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

QA/BA - Agile

£400 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client are currently seekin...

PPA Supply Teachers

£121 - £142 per day: Randstad Education Luton: Early Years, KS1 & 2 Prima...

Primary Supply Teacher

£121 - £142 per annum: Randstad Education Luton: Early Years, KS1 & 2 Prim...

Primary Supply Teacher

£121 - £142 per day: Randstad Education Luton: Primary supply teacher Hertford...

Day In a Page

Read Next
David Cameron gives his keynote speech to the Conservative party conference in Birmingham  

Conservative Party Conference: Here's what David Cameron said in his speech…and what he meant

John Rentoul
 

Ebola virus in the US: How did the disease ever spread this far?

Sophie Harman
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?