Your movie Boiling
Point - in a few words, what is it about, and what can you tell us
about your character in it?
is a tense noir style interrogation that asks questions
on the definition of right and wrong. The majority of the film is shot
in one location, a dingy boiler room. It is also a dark, modern noir
tale of deceit, betrayal and murder that questions what justice means
and how far should we go to find out the truth.
Owen Davis is a
mysterious private investigator that likes to play games. At first he
plays everything by the book - but then the twist happens. He is a
workaholic and does not give up to easily; he knows what he wants and
will do anything in his power to get it.
The man with a dark
secret you play in Boiling
Point - could you at all identify with him, personally, and what
did you draw upon to bring him to life?
I think most people
have secrets and some will take them to the grave
whilst others wait for an appropriate time to reveal them. Without giving too much away Davis has lost something and I can identify with
him. I enjoy using method acting techniques and I used emotional memory
and substitution. When I looked at Paul Connors I saw someone in my own
past that had hurt me, and this generated real emotions. I like to do
this a lot as an actor, the use of substitution.
How did you get
involved with the project to begin with, and what can you tell us about
As a professional actor my
wife and I like to help out with up-and-coming directors, actors or
writers. I had been approached by a media school (filmmaking) and asked
if I would read for Owen Davis, a character in a short called Boiling
Point. After reading the script I could not resist the part, and after
reading for it was offered the role. I love characters like this, as
they have so much to offer, they are unpredictable and as an actor you
can really let go and not hold back, digging deep into your own
memories and breathing life into them.
A few words about your director
Jack Leigh, and what was it like working with him?
honesty, Jack is one of those directors that actors would give
anything to work with. He is very focused on what he wants, but at the
same time he lets the actors do most of the work, trusting them. I felt
Jack knew from the outset that I was a very method-orientated actor and
worked with that. He would let me go so far then, just say something
like ”not yet, we will save that to later” or “you can let your
go here.” Jack is someone I would work with again. He is someone we
should keep an eye on in the future.
can you tell us about the actual shoot and the on-set atmosphere?
filmed it over two weeks and filmed about 14 hours of material. We
also shot it during the evening. One of the things about this shoot was
that we had one camera and shot each scene a few times and from
different angles. I always try to bring something fresh to each take.
The atmosphere was wonderful with everyone, including the sound,
lighting crew etc working as a team.
go back to the beginnings of your career: What got you into acting in the
first place, and did you receive any formal training on the subject?
family are from a background of entertainers, so it was
in my blood. However to be frank, in the 1970s and 1980s I was a
rebellious teenager who made wrong choices, I left school without any
education or qualifications, I also had a speech impediment. I found
that drama gave me an outlet to release my frustration and anger. I
found that I was able to express myself in wonderful ways and really
explore characters like I had never done before. It wasn’t until my
late 20s that I decided that I needed an education and leave my
rebellious lifestyle behind. I got a tutor and learned all I could about
art, drama, society and took elocution lessons until finally I got into
drama school. I studied at Lee Strasberg Studio, RADA and Richmond
the years, you have done quite a bit of stagework - so how does acting on
stage compare to acting in front of a camera, and which do you actually
I like both. They both are different in many
ways. With stage I enjoy the process that an actor goes through such as
the rehearsal, building characters, and the live performance. Once you
are on that stage, there is no turning back. Films are made; there is a
lot of cheating in film. The good thing about film is that you can cut
and do another take. It’s a lot more intimate in front of the camera.
The camera never lies. I like the idea that Michael Chekhov refers to
in his book To the Actor that as actors we radiate what’s within.
eyes are the windows of the soul. Thinking more thoughts will transfer
well on screen so there is no need to go over the top with emotions.
Any films of yours you'd like to talk about,
any future projects?
I have just played Wilfred Owen which
was filmed by Gordon Hill, who is
director, and written by Dean Johnson. I am also working on a film project which is called
Breaking Free, this is my autobiography - Breaking Free from the street
to the stage into a film.
How would you describe yourself as
an actor, and are there any acting techniques you usually rely on?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
I am very much an actor that likes to
use a variety of techniques. I am a great fan of Sanford Meisner, Lee
Strasberg and Michael Chekhov. As an actor I like to use my past
experience and look for truth.
(or indeed actresses) who inspire you?
As regards to film I have
always admired Michael Caine. As for the method, I like Edward Norton,
Daniel Day Lewis, Dustin Hoffman, James Wood. Kenneth Branagh, Jeremy
Irons, Richard Burton and Peter O'Toole as well.
I like Michael Caine-films, and most films with the
above actors. As a young
person I did enjoy The Labyrinth, Top Gun, and the Rocky-movies.
... and of course, films you really deplore?
be honest, and I know many will not be happy with me for saying this,
I am not a fan of films which are gratuitous.
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for the interview!