Tom Hiddleston had to play down his "irritating optimism" to get into his latest role of a "melancholy" vampire.
The Thor star plays Adam, alongside Tilda Swinton's Eve, in Only Lovers Left Alive, and playing the reclusive musician was a "big stretch" for him, he said.
Speaking about his character at an event at the British Film Institute on London's South Bank looking ahead to the Toronto and Venice film festivals, he said: "He is romantic, and melancholy, and poetic, and sensitive, deeply creative, and nostalgic for a pre-digital age where creativity was more of an endeavour... and he's a vampire."
Tom said he could see similarities between himself and Adam, but added that he is a much more optimistic and happy person.
"There's a lot of me in Adam for sure, but Adam is also darker than I am.
"John Hurt is in the film and Adam is described by his character as a 'suicidally romantic scoundrel'. I have probably an irritating optimism sometimes in myself and I had to turn the volume on that down."
Tom described working with Tilda as "amazing", adding: "She's an extraordinary, extraordinary artist. It really felt like a dance in a strange way because Adam and Eve became alive as much as we invested in them."
In the tale about the relationship between the two vampires, the London-born actor said Swinton's character in the film complemented Adam.
"In a way her breadth can hold Adam's complexity, and it's really a love story between these two fine and delicate creatures of the night," he said.