Simon Pegg has admitted that the viewing public might have to take his new film with a pinch of salt as it portrays him as an unlikely heartthrob.

The Hot Fuzz actor is starring in How to Lose Friends and Alienate People, an adaptation of Toby Young's bestseller about a young British writer struggling to make the grade at a glossy New York magazine.

And the Spaced star, who can be seen next year in JJ Abrams' Star Trek film, said the "hilarious" literary film could be one of the comic highlights of the year.

"One of the key moments of suspension of disbelief is that I could be stuck in a dilemma between Megan [Fox] and Kirsten [Dunst]!" he joked.

"The important thing about the film is that people like Sidney," he told Empire magazine of his hapless character in the film.

"The British love characters like that — David Brent and Basil Fawlty. You see someone who sabotages their own passage through life, but you keep going back to give them another chance.

"Sidney is more sympathetic, but it's that same beast — the guy that you constantly have to make excuses for."

And 38-year-old Pegg, whose affectionate homages to movie staples in Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz helped him forge a career in the US, revealed he's currently writing a new script with his co-star Nick Frost, but he won’t give away any details.

"It's going to have a sci-fi edge and it's a road movie," he explained.

"We learnt a big lesson from Hot Fuzz, and it was Empire's fault as well. I think we told Empire, 'Yeah, the next film's Hot Fuzz,' and suddenly it became a thing before we'd even started writing it."

How to Lose Friends and Alienate People is released on October 3rd.

The new issue of Empire is released on Friday July 4th.

04/07/2008 00:03:01