James Marsden details his very ‘normal’ pre-awards show ritual

James Marsden has revealed how he prepares for one of the biggest nights in Hollywood.

Ahead of attending the 2024 Emmy Awards, the 50-year-old actor took Vanity Fair behind the scenes as he gussied up for the awards ceremony. Marsden was among the nominees for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for his role in Jury Duty.

When asked by Vanity Fair if he has any pre-show rituals, the X-Men star admitted that he tries to “do something normal” before heading to a glamorous event like the Emmys. “I feel like it’s always a good idea to just do something normal, like go to the grocery store and get some milk, pick the dog up from grooming,” Marsden said, explaining that doing ordinary tasks helps “get your mind off of everything” before the main event.

Before heading to the 75th annual Emmy Awards, the 27 Dresses star revealed that he tends to “stick with the healthy stuff” such as eating oatmeal, drinking water, exercising, and getting a good night’s rest. Despite working in Hollywood for more than two decades, Marsden admitted that he still gets nervous prior to attending major A-list events.

“It feels like it’s the last leg of the race, coming down to the Emmys - which is the big one for me, I think. Pretending like the nerves aren’t there doesn’t always work, but I’m good,” he told the outlet, later adding: “The nerves don’t really kick in until you get there and you see everybody.”

Elsewhere in the video interview, Marsden received an impromptu FaceTime call from his Jury Duty co-star Ronald Gladden. Gladden - who appeared as himself in the hoax courtroom sitcom - gave his friend a pre-show pep talk while dressed in his tuxedo, as he assured Marsden that he was going to take home the Emmy award. Before ending the phone call, the Hairspray actor told Gladden: “Let’s have a good time and congrats on all this. There’s no one else I’d want to share it with than you, pal.”

For the event, Marsden was dressed in a black, double-breasted Canali suit jacket with a crip, white button-down dress shirt underneath - sans bow tie. He paired the look with matching black trousers and a satin cummerbund, along with a pair of black Christian Louboutin loafers and a formal Omega watch with a black wristband.

While speaking to Vanity Fair, Marsden was unsurprisingly asked about that viral text his mother sent him after he received a Golden Globes nomination. Earlier this month, the Notebook actor received a Golden Globe nod for his performance in Jury Duty. While the award ultimately went to Matthew Macfadyen for his role in Succession, it was Marsden’s mother Kathleen Marsden that was the talk of the evening.

In a since-expired Instagram Story, Marsden showed his followers a screenshot of the message he received from his mother. The text began with Kathleen describing one part of the award show she loved that featured her son.

“My favourite moment of tonight was when they had your picture up with the other five nominees,” she wrote. “Just like I’ve seen all my life of different nominee pics all together like that.”

She added that as the nominations for the award were being announced, she felt extremely touched and proud to see the Enchanted star on that list. “And I saying to myself - my son is one of the six chosen and there he is up on the TV screen next to the other nominees. MY son did that. I can’t quit smiling.”

Marsden wrote over the screenshot, along with a red heart emoji: “My mom, I love you.”

Meanwhile at the Emmys, the award for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series ultimately went to Ebon Moss-Bachrach for his role in The Bear.