Mark Wahlbert and Indian Motorcycle join forces | The Perfect Man

Mark Wahlberg and Indian Motorcycle join forces

Mark Wahlberg has been a busy boy of late not just with producing and starring in films (Ted 2, Daddy’s Home and Entourage recently) but also with developing a signature limited-edition fashion collection with Indian Motorcycle. It’s not his first business venture, he has shares in Aquahydrate, an electroyte-enhanced water, and the Barbados Tridents cricket team. Plus there’s his own range of Marked nutritional supplements putting his estimated fortune at around 200 million dollars.

Interviewed by Women’s Wear Daily by phone at his Los Angeles home, Mark talks about the Indian Motorcycle deal, teaching Will Ferrell how to ride a motorcycle, and life in general.

WWD: Why are you so driven?

Mark Wahlberg: I’ve been put in a unique position to do some things that I really care about and that excite me. You never know how long it’s going to last. You have to do things, expand your horizons and there are a lot of things I’m interested in. I can’t be running off to movie sets forever.

WWD: When did you start riding motorcycles?

M.W.: Gosh, I used to ride a lot when I was a kid, but, you know, not often enough. Friends were lucky enough to have dirt bikes in the neighborhood, so I knew very early on how to ride bikes with gears, which is something I’m trying to teach my boys now. They get so frustrated because they have to use a little dirt bike.

WWD: How did you get teamed up with Indian Motorcycle?

M.W.: Last year they approached me about being a brand ambassador and launching the new Scout at Sturgis [an annual motorcycle rally in South Dakota]. I was like, “Absolutely.” It was an excuse for me to be able to ride again and for my wife [Rhea Durham] to say “OK.” It’s great because my sons like to ride little 50s [dirt bikes], and we live in a gated community so we ride around the neighborhood. If I am given the OK, I love riding around in the Canyons.

WWD: Have you ever helped develop a clothing line?

M.W.: No. It was cool. We got to go in there and make sure that it represented us both and that it made everybody happy. When I did the Calvin Klein thing, I was basically just a model-for-hire. They weren’t really interested in my input.

WWD: How did you manage to get six bikes from Indian for “Daddy’s Home”?

M.W.: It’s like the Mini Cooper in “The Italian Job.” The bike plays a pretty substantial role — driving through the house, crashing through a window, landing perfectly on its wheels, all the while Will’s fork flex has been crushed, jumping over the giant ramp at a construction site — all kinds of crazy stuff.

WWD: Where does your fearlessness come from?

M.W.: I’m not fearless in the way that I used to be. I just went snowboarding with my sons. I took them to Yellowstone and I hadn’t snowboarded for 20 years. And these kids were just jumping off the lifts and going down the black diamonds like it was nothing. A friend of mine got a level 3 AC [acromioclavicular] shoulder tear within an hour of being there. So I knew, “Ah, I’ve got to be careful here. I’ve got to get home and stay in one piece.” I’m pretty cautious. I don’t mind taking my risks at work, because I know that I’m betting on myself. As long as I do my homework and come in prepared then I think I always have a great chance to succeed. But I’m still cautious about certain things, like we took all the necessary safety precautions when doing all those stunts.

WWD: When Ducati brought back the MotoGiro, an open-road, five-day motorcycle race in Tuscany, I wrote a story. I don’t know how to ride, I just rode with someone else. It’s just ridiculous how fast they can go.

M.W.: Well, it’s not fun riding fast on the back of somebody’s bike [laughs]. Yeah, I remember taking Will on the bike for the first time, and he was holding on pretty tight.…It was difficult [to teach him how to ride]. I play the cool, motorcycle-riding dad and he plays the very straightforward father figure. He’s trying to do all the things I do to try to impress the kids. There are some pretty hairy stunts as well and some pretty crazy accidents when he was learning how to ride.

WWD: How would you describe your own style?

M.W.: I’m pretty casual. I like to wear a pair of jeans and a T-shirt that fits good and feels really comfortable. Being from Boston, it’s always important to have a little bit of green in there. I only like to dress up if I have to go somewhere. If I have to put a suit on, I’ll put a suit on. But I would rather wear a pair of Jordans or a pair of boots, jeans and a T-shirt. That drives my wife and my daughters crazy. But now they’ve seen the cool Indian shirts that they are able to wear, so they’re really excited.