It takes a special man to be Samantha Jones' love interest. But then again, it takes a special man to admit crying during the first Sex and the City movie.
"I was like, I've got to see what this is about. I need to know what I'm doing," Sex and the City 2 actor Max Ryan tells TVGuide.com. "I watched the movie and I was emotionally touched. I actually cried a bit. It's quite embarrassing but I did. I was happy, I was sad, and I was like, 'Whoa, this is really good.'"
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Despite having never seen the TV series, the 43-year-old actor won the role of architect Rikard Spirit in the franchise's sequel, which struts into theaters May 27. Ryan is the first to admit he got the part with a little help from his new leading lady, Kim Cattrall, who recommended him to writer-director-executive producer Michael Patrick King.
"I did the first scene and Kim turned to Michael and said, 'I really don't need to see any more.' I was like, 'She's so right, Michael,'" Ryan says. "I think she played a massive, massive part in me getting this. You've got to have a connection. ... With her it's just very cool, very low key, but still I was turning over inside, for sure."
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The movie's trailer shows Ryan jumping sand dunes and catching Samantha's wandering eye.
"My character has some tremendous moments that will be remembered," Ryan teases. "It's the first chance that I've actually played myself in a movie, obviously delivering the lines of a character, but it's still the essence of me."
His new role is also his first departure from grittier fare.
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"After I'd done Death Race and all these hardcore action movies, I wanted to do a romantic comedy. So we were actively seeking the right part," Ryan says. "I said to Michael, 'Do I kill anyone in this movie or am I being killed?' And he was like, 'Wrong movie.'"
Ryan knew he'd won over the fashion-fixated Sex and the City crowd when the franchise's longtime costume designer, Patricia Fields, had him wear some of his own clothes in the film.
"I rolled in in a green jumper, some Ralph Lauren khaki pants and some Timberland boots. And she goes, 'Hm, I really like that jumper. Can you wrap it around your head?' I was like, 'Sure!' Ryan laughs. "What you have in the trailer is I'm coming over the sand dunes in the Jeep and then the shades come off and that's actually my jumper. I should be giving that away at some charity event or something like that."
Will Ryan's character, Rikard, find a permanent spot in Samantha's life? Ryan is optimistic about the possibility of a Sex and the City 3.
"I would say absolutely, why not?" Ryan says. "I think there will be a lot of people who would be upset if there wasn't another movie after this."