Don’t let Jack Brinkley-Cook’s good looks fool you—whether catching waves in Montauk or taking hikes in Bridgehampton, you’ll likely find the 22-year-old son of supermod Christie Brinkley hitting the outdoors instead of a nightclub—with the exception of Surf Lodge, of course.
What was it like growing up in the Hamptons?
It was really nice, because it’s so beautiful out here. When the weather was bad, or if there was a party going on in the city, I could be in Manhattan in two hours. I feel like I grew up between the two places.
Did it ever get boring?
I wouldn’t say I was bored—on the weekends, all my friends were out of school, so we did what kids did. When I went to the city, I’d stay at my older sister Alexa [Ray Joel]’s apartment for a night. But when I come back now after living in the city for three and a half years and living in Boston a year before that—I studied at Emerson my freshman year—I kind of think to myself, I don’t know if I could do it out here on a Wednesday in February or March!
How has the Hamptons changed?
It’s just getting busier, but since I’ve been able to participate in the nightlife and social scene in the Hamptons a bit, I like the progression.
What spots do you hit up now?
Me and my friends are more likely to have a bonfire on Ocean Road Beach than ever go to a club, aside from Surf Lodge, because we love it there. We surf all day in Montauk, grab lunch, and then head over to Surf Lodge in the afternoon. They always have great music and good vibes. Most of what I do in the Hamptons is outdoors!
I’m getting into fishing. I’m not really catching much, but I’m trying. My house in Bridgehampton is on a decent amount of property, a lot of which is woods and has nature trails throughout. Occasionally, my friends and I will hike through the woods, but the ticks kind of killed that. I started surfing when I was young but really got into it around six years ago. Surfing has become a huge part of my life. My friends and I are constantly checking the surf report. Even in the winter, if we see the conditions will be good, we’ll pack a bag and head out East at the crack of dawn.
When did you realize that your mom was a supermodel?
I was 10 years old, and we went to the premiere of a Harry Potter film. I remember Daniel Radcliffe came up to her and I was like, “That’s Harry Potter!” I think that was the first time that I realized she didn’t have a normal job.
Was she strict when you were younger?
Like any kid, I had my mishaps here and there, and when she needed to be strict, she was, but she’s a pretty outgoing, energetic person. She was also really focused, too. She runs a ton of businesses—she works harder than anybody I know. She’s constantly traveling, and when it comes to business and that stuff, she’s serious.
What’s the best piece of advice your mom has given you?
As cliché as it sounds, she’s always been hugely encouraging of doing what we love. Life is too short to not do something that you want to do every day. My sisters and I have understood the importance of that.
What does she think of your shirtless Instagram posts?
I don’t have that many! She hasn’t really said anything so I don’t know if she’s into it, but she’s not opposed. She knows I’m 22 and not doing anything bad. [Laughs]
Was there ever pressure to get into modeling?
I never really felt the pressure of following in my mom’s footsteps. My little sister [Sailor] has these incredible blossoming careers in modeling and photography. My oldest sister [Alexa] is a musician, and she does shows all over and does really well. My mom was good about encouraging us to do what we wanted. She wanted us to find our interests and then pursue them.
How did you end up studying acting?
After my freshman year at Emerson, where I was studying marketing, I realized that marketing wasn’t what I wanted to do. I applied to the Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute, which is where I am now. It’s been my home away from home in the city. I’ve been in a short film and I’m auditioning around, which is pretty easy, because if I have to miss class, they understand!
Are you into the theater scene out East?
Yeah. Bay Street Theater is a fantastic amenity. Every summer for the past four or five summers, my mom is in a show at Guild Hall in East Hampton—which is an equally impressive establishment and platform—that’s a comedic take on reading genuine autobiographies from celebrities. It’s pretty hilarious. In October, my mom and I go to the Hamptons International Film Festival religiously. That’s sort of our thing—I look forward to that probably more than any other weekend over the course of the year.
What’s the dynamic like between you and your sisters?
Alexa was living in the city when I moved there—Sailor wasn’t there yet—so Alexa became my go-to person for advice. She and I have traveled on our own more than Sailor and I have, so that’s a special bond. The last place we went to was the Caribbean. My mom has a home there. Sailor and I grew up together in the Hamptons. We both went to the Ross School, so we got into a little trouble together. She’s my little sister, so I always look out for her, but she has actually now become friends with all my friends.
Why did you and Sailor keep both of your parents’ names?
It’s funny—I don’t know exactly when that kind of happened. I write my name as Jack Brinkley-Cook and I noticed recently that Sailor doesn’t include the hyphen. People just always referred to me as Jack Brinkley-Cook over Jack Brinkley or Jack Cook, so it sort of just became what it was.
Is it a full house in the Hamptons during the summer?
It tends to be. Alexa spends the majority of her time from June through September at my mom’s house. Sailor is in and out. I’m in and out, too, but you can count on the weekends being full.
Do you cook?
In the city, it’s so easy to order takeout. Out here, we don’t have Postmates, so I’m more likely to cook. I try to eat healthy, but I can’t compare to my mom and my sister. My mom is a pescetarian, and Sailor is a vegan and gluten-free. Alexa eats a little meat, but really only white meat—she eats healthy as well. I try to eat healthy, but I sort of stretch the boundaries. Last night, I was looking around the kitchen, and everything was just soybean this and almond milk that. The only thing that seemed a little bit on the edge was a Bisquick pancake mix, so I ended up making pancakes!
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