We asked and you answered: "Toxic" is your favorite Britney Spears song!
Besides being a Top 10 karaoke song for certain bloggers,"Toxic" was the last big hit of Britney Spears 1.0 and featured one of the pop star's finest videos, a globe-spanning spy romp that saw Britney play a secret agent. But while Spears' movements since "Toxic" have been well-documented, her music-video co-star's have been...less so. Nine years later, what happened to this guy?
"This guy" is of course Martin Henderson, the New Zealand actor who played Britney's paramour in the "Toxic" video. Henderson's role in the "Toxic" video came at a plumb time for the thespian, who was enjoying something of a moment in the early 2000s. The good times started in 2002, when Henderson played the male lead in a tiny horror flick that wound up grossing $130 million:
The Ring's success got Henderson some extra looks in Hollywood, and soon the Kiwi got his first leading-man part in a major motion picture, the role of a badass motorcycle driver in Torque, a midbudget action film that tried to do for bikes what the Fast and the Furious franchise had done for cars.
Released the same week as "Toxic," Torque bombed, though it did invent the 180-degree-turn-by-riding-up-a-wall move that The Dark Knight would use so effectively four years later.
Hollywood is a cruel business, and Torque proved to be Henderson's only chance to carry a picture. He knocked around the business, taking supporting roles in midlevel studio films—Flyboys, Smokin' Aces, Bride & Prejudice—and earning raves for his theater work in London. For a while, Henderson's scruffy good looks and not-quite-movie-star persona made him seem like a natural lock for television, but his luck there was sour: A TV adaptation of Mr. & Mrs. Smith (in which Henderson played the Brad Pitt role) was never picked up, while Off the Map, a medical drama from the creator of Grey's Anatomy, only lasted 13 episodes.
Britney Spears is recording her eighth album. Henderson is wrapping a movie about the West Memphis Three. Their circumstances have changed greatly since they shared the screen nine years ago, but it's worth revisiting the time when both were young, glamorous and free—and starring in a silly music video about spies.