Meet the good looking actor who’s found a style to suit him Simon MacCorkindale seems set to prove that you can’t judge a book by its cover. One glance at the debonair six footer might suggest that he earns his living wheeling and dealing at the Stock Exchange, commanding a battalion, or doing something important in banking. But Mr MacCorkindale who has a clutch of challenging roles under his (smart leather) belt that many an actor would be proud of is proof that, these days, you simply can’t go by appearances alone. In fact, Simon did almost follow in family footsteps and go into the Army. For generations, MacCorkindale’s have automatically gone into the Army and indeed, much of Simon’s childhood was spent travelling the world with his parents, moving from posting to posting.
“I think I’d probably have got bored in the Army after a while even if it did mean shifting countries every so often. Still, growing up in that disciplined atmosphere has probably helped me be more self disciplined when it comes to learning lines, making certain I do adequate research for a part because so far, they’ve been mostly historical ones. I’ve always been one for a challenge, so acting filled the bill,” he told us.
And that decision to become an actor has fulfilled his deep rooted ambition to travel, and brought immense satisfaction, through parts in Death On The Nile and The Riddle Of The Sands, for example.
As far as fashion goes, Simon’s taste runs along definite lines. “In fact,” says Simon, “the main criterion when I buy clothes is that they should be tough enough to last. Jeans, casual jackets, polo necks above all, nothing constricting. I only wear ties if it’s really important. You can’t dress up for rehearsals, there’s no point.
“And while people think actors live very glamorous lives, when I’m at home I’m usually putting up shelves or washing the car… It’s not exactly Noel Coward…” However, he concedes that show business can be glamorous and that it’s a very sociable industry. “You don’t hove to join in on the social side of things, of course, but you’d miss most of the fun. I eat out quite a lot, and go to premieres consequently there’s a tuxedo or two lurking in my wardrobe.” Still, Simon admits, there’s nothing quite so relaxing as an evening at home with a good meal and a bottle of decent wine. “I used to be quite a dab hand in the kitchen myself. But I’ve lost the touch lately and usually end up with something simple.”
Simon has a slight tendency to put on weight though you wouldn’t believe it, to look at the man and runs, weight-trains and occasionally rides to keep the excess pounds at bay. “I cut out lunch, too, unless I’m working. Then I need all the energy I can get. But I’m a typical Englishman, in that my dream is to start every day with a huge, cooked breakfast and a leisurely look at the papers. It doesn’t seem to happen very often, though…”
And that’s probably because he is fortunate in such a precarious profession to be working almost constantly. We expect to see him in a sweeping romantic saga called The Manions Of America, which should reach our screens at the end of the year.
Acting, naturally, takes him all over the world on business though he travels for pleasure, too and places visited have included America, Germany, Belgium, Mexico and Ireland in recent years. For a man who has spent less than a decade in the profession and who’s only 28 now that can’t be bad.
Indeed, travel is another deter-mining factor in his choice of clothes. “I’ve never been very good at the things in life that aren’t constructive or creative and packing is one of those things. So I like materials like cashmere and lambswool for sweaters and they don’t crumple as much as shirts. In the same way, I spend as little time as possible shopping I try to cram it all into a couple of days, a couple of times a year.
“I suppose I’m quite conservative about clothes,” he says. “Over the years I’ve found my favourite shops where I can always find the right things and I stick to them Medway for shoes, Ports for jackets and so on.” He sticks to traditional colours, too blue, brown “and I’ve just discovered burgundy, which is going to be my colour for 1981!
“But on the whole, despite my penchant for certain favourite styles, I do think men are terribly restricted in what they wear and even if I had lots of clothes they’d all end up looking similar. But a woman is luckier, she can choose all sorts of outfits for all sorts of occasions and look dramatically different for each one.” There are other considerations. “If you’re an actor, your face is potentially your fortune. I have skin problems I have to take care of quite apart from the fact that I invariably cut myself shaving which is why, whenever possible, I grow a beard or moustache; and my skin tends to dry out because of studio lights. Aramis do a very good medicated range which helps and I’m dedicated to Oil of Ulay!” If he keeps up the good work on it, we don’t see how Simon’s face could fail to earn him a fortune. With his good looks and undeniably stylish way of life, it looks as if he has everything going for him. And really, it couldn’t happen to a nicer Englishman