Categories Interviews Media Print Media

New interview in The Times

 

The actor has no regrets about leaving Tinseltown for the mean streets of Manchester — and a spot of fishing

It’s given that most actors don’t have two ha’pennies to rub together. The London-born actor Damian Lewis seems keen to show he’s not one of them — during the interview he holds two pounds coins, clicking them together to punctuate points he is making. It might be a nervous affectation or a show of ostentation. Given the shiny blue suit and polished brogues that he is wearing at BBC TV Centre, it might well be the latter. This is after all, the actor who was thrust into the spotlight in the epic Spielberg- produced mini-series Band of Brothers in 2001, became an overnight sensation, the most famous screen redhead since Shirley Temple, and was whisked off to Hollywood in the wake of that show. But Hollywood didn’t quite work out, and after some dud films and a cancelled TV series, he is back in Britain, his latest role in a BBC TV film Stolen, an earnest, quietly moving film about child trafficking.

Is he drawn to these more serious subjects? After all, in 2004 he starred in the intense film Keane, about a man who loses his daughter, which was hardly a laugh a minute.

“You saw that?” he says. “That makes two of you. The answer is yes and no — after Band of Brothers I made a film called Dreamcatcher, about aliens exploding out of people’s bottoms, so I do like a bit of popcorn with my caviar. It was very exciting, it was a big studio movie, an $80 million movie, and it was … it was awful! And a film I just did, Your Highness, is sort of like Porky’s meets a medieval spoof. Toby Jones, he was so upset, he was so unhappy to be in it. I had to talk him down from the ledge a few times — he has to wear a naked suit where he has no penis.”

 

Read the rest here.

Categories Interviews Stolen

New Guardian Interview: Damian Lewis: Top of the cops

He made his name playing troubled soldiers and driven detectives. Why has success left Damian Lewis so unsatisfied? He talks heroism and home life with Maddy Costa

Subtlety and restraint are Damian Lewis’s hallmarks as an actor. His ability to convey a character’s innermost thoughts with just a flicker of an eyebrow is even more impressive when you discover how animated he is in real life. When we meet, in a chi-chi members’ club in west London, he has a pint of coffee working through his system, and that natural energy is comically amplified. His accent careens from Prince Charles to Jamie Oliver, as he talks about his guilt at not doing more theatre, the appeal of playing policemen and soldiers, and the satisfactions of domesticity; he alternates between supreme self-confidence and genuine horror at what he thinks is coming across as his own solipsism.

Some of this internal tussling stems from his turning 40 this year. This has, he says, encouraged in him “a new-found seriousness about what I do”, as well as a desire to “explore more than just the showing-off element of acting”. His latest film, Stolen, which screens on BBC1 on Sunday, is visibly the work of a man muzzling his ego. Stolen revolves around three children who have been trafficked to the UK; Lewis plays Anthony Carter, the detective inspector attempting to trace their whereabouts. Though Carter is central to the narrative, the character’s range is limited. “He needs to be undemonstrative and unshowy,” explains Lewis. “The focus needs to be on the children.”

What grabbed him about this part was the story’s political dimension and the promise of the director, Justin Chadwick (who made The Other Boleyn Girl), that the finished film would be visually arresting. Usually, Lewis says, he likes working in TV, despite the lower wages, because “narrative is everything. I like the precision of the storytelling, and that it’s done through characters.” Stolen was an opposite experience: he is proud of the film because of the way it looks – there is a poetic quality to the camerawork that raises it above a bog-standard issues drama.

 

Read the rest at The Guardian.

Categories Interviews Media Personal and Family Life Print Media Stolen

Damian Lewis: Top of the Cops – June 27, 2011

Damian Lewis: Top of the Cops

He made his name playing troubled soldiers and driven detectives. Why has success left Damian Lewis so unsatisfied? He talks heroism and home life.

by with Maddy Costa – The Guardian – 27 June 27 2011

Damian Lewis
 ‘I wasn’t humble enough’ … Damian Lewis. Photograph: Graeme Robertson for the Guardian

Subtlety and restraint are Damian Lewis’s hallmarks as an actor. His ability to convey a character’s innermost thoughts with just a flicker of an eyebrow is even more impressive when you discover how animated he is in real life. When we meet, in a chi-chi members’ club in west London, he has a pint of coffee working through his system, and that natural energy is comically amplified. His accent careens from Prince Charles to Jamie Oliver, as he talks about his guilt at not doing more theatre, the appeal of playing policemen and soldiers, and the satisfactions of domesticity; he alternates between supreme self-confidence and genuine horror at what he thinks is coming across as his own solipsism.

Continue reading Damian Lewis: Top of the Cops – June 27, 2011

Categories Homeland Interviews Stolen

New interview, ‘Stolen’ broadcast date, ComicCon panel


  • New interview on the Metro.co.uk website:

    What research did you do into trafficking for this role?

    I went to a police trafficking unit and spoke to the man who set it up. Trafficking goes on all around us. There are people being trafficked in and out of the country at an alarming rate and it’s difficult to bring prosecutions because they often come in with valid passports. After they arrive they’re smuggled off into the shadows and face exploitation.

    Was it disappointing when your US police series Life was cancelled?

    Yes. The work was terrific and the creator of the show is incredibly talented. I had a wonderful character and the storylines were interesting. It was fun living in LA for a couple of years but you work very hard and very long hours. I was starting a family and was away from them a lot. Goodness knows how people do it for seven years in those long shows. Cable shows are different because they have shorter runs so you have five months of the year to do other things.

    Why did you want to become an actor?

    Acting was something I instinctively did and liked. I was happier acting than doing anything else. I was disenchanted by the idea of university and decided to try for drama school. I came out of drama school, got work, kept working and I’ve been incredibly lucky since.

    Was there a particular performance that inspired your interest in acting?

    I put on a production of The Long And The Short And The Tall with some friends at school and played Wackford Squeers in a production of Nicholas Nickleby. My dad used to take us to see West End musicals as holiday treats – things like Guys And Dolls. I loved the theatre as a kid and still do.

    Read the rest @Metro.co.uk.

  • According to online tv guides, Stolen will broadcast July 3rd from 9:00pm – 10:30pm on BBC1!

  • Showtime will have a panel at this years Comic-Con (July 21) and debut an “exclusive first-look” at Homeland. Morena Baccarin will introduce the trailer. No Damian apparently. Source

Categories Gallery Interviews Messages

ES Magazine article


Damian Lewis and Helen McCrory are both featured in this week’s ES Magazine and talk about family and their old party animal days.

Helen and I partied very, very hard before we met and then we collided at the Almeida in 2004 [in Five Gold Rings] and together we partied even harder. We used to lose entire evenings listening to jazz at Ronnie Scott’s. We love to dance, and when we weren’t out we’d put on music really loudly and dance around the house, just the two of us.

I proposed to Helen in Paris. I tried to do it on the Pont Neuf – I was sweating bullets and wrestling in my overcoat pocket for the ring, which had got stuck in a little Cellophane bag, but when I finally got it out, a gaggle of Japanese tourists surrounded us like a flock of seagulls, taking pictures, and the moment was totally destroyed. I now take Helen back to Paris for three days without our two kids [Manon, four, and Gulliver, three] every February for our anniversary. We walk about the city, and sit in bars drinking rosé.

Click here to read the rest.

Update: I’ve added screencaps from the e-dition to the gallery.

Small update from Michael, Damian’s assistant: Damian left the UK on Wednesday and is now in Charlotte. According to the Homeland Casting Facebook, filming starts on June 14th.

Categories Interviews Media Video

Five Minutes With: Damian Lewis – June 4, 2011

Sporty, Intelligent, Funny

by Matthew Stadlen | Five Minutes With… | June 4, 2011

BBC News has posted the “Five Minutes With…” interview here on their website. The interview was originally recorded on April 18, 2011. Or you can view video below:

 

Categories Download Interviews News Stolen Video

BBC Breakfast Interview


Damian Lewis was on BBC Breakfast on Tuesday morning to discuss Stolen. According to the interview, the BBC drama will broadcast in July. Damian also mentioned Homeland will be airing after the series Dexter, which has been broadcasting on Sundays in the fall these past few years.

Update: Click here to download the clip from our Media pages.

Gallery Links:

TV Appearances > BBC Breakfast (24 May 2011)
Television > Stolen (2011) > Clip1 Screencaps

Categories Homeland Interviews Media Print Media

New Telegraph Interview!

 

The ex-Etonian talks schooldays, silly movies and choosing his own career

 

Although he must be fed up with every interview ever written about him mentioning his red hair – often in tones that suggest he was born with a third leg – today it’s not Damian Lewis’ hair that first catches the eye. It’s what’s on top of it. This is a small red and black-checked trilby hat. It’s the sort of headgear only an actor, or possibly an unusually flamboyant butcher, would ever dream of wearing.

We’re meeting in an engagingly sleazy theatrical club on the Charing Cross Road, a place where the walls are hung with pictures of actors and actresses in a variety of exotic costumes. There’s also a wafty scarlet satin curtain screening us off from the rest of the place. None the less it’s Lewis’s hat that I keep glancing at as it sits on the table between us. Is it a joke? A touch of absurdity to quell any suggestion of vanity? Or is it the opposite? Something he actually thinks looks good on him?

After an hour in his company, I’m still not sure. All I know is that Lewis probably doesn’t give a damn what anyone thinks of him or his hat. More than any other actor I’ve ever interviewed he seems entirely contented in his own skin. Admittedly, this isn’t saying much, but in Lewis’s case the self-assurance seems to come off him in waves.

Read the rest at the Telegraph website.

Categories Download Homeland Interviews Video

‘Homeland’ teaser and Daybreak interview!


  • Showtime has posted a nice little preview of Homeland that features Damian. Click here for a download.

  • Damian was on ITV’s Daybreak on Tuesday promoting Your Highness. A clip of the interview can be viewed on the ITV site here (UK-residents only). Click here for screencaps from the interview.

Categories Download Events Interviews News Radio

Upcoming appearance, new interviews


  • Upcoming events: Damian Lewis is expected to be present at St. James’s Palace in London on July 5th in a gathering of Ambassadors from the Prince’s Trust. Click here for more on his activities as Ambassador.

    Damian will also be taking part in the celebrity golf tournament Mini Masters 2010 in aid of Leuka at Duke’s Meadows Golf Club in Chiswick on July 16th! Click here for ticket information. Thanks to Linda and Ryanne for the news!

  • Damian was interviewed by Richard Bacon at Wimbledon on Friday by BBC Radio 5 Live. Click here at the BBC website to download the podcast. He was also part of the Wimbledon with Tarango and Skelton program; click here for that download. Update: Click here to download the Bacon interview.

  • Damian tv in Australia: The Situation will be screening on Movie One this month – click here for broadcast times. Thanks to Jen for the news!

Categories Download Events Gallery Interviews Video

At the English National Ballet Summer Party

  • Gallery Update: Damian Lewis attended the English National Ballet 60th Anniversary party at the Dorchester Hotel in London on Tuesday. Click here at the gallery for pictures.

    Click here at the SuttonGuardian.co.uk for a video interview with Damian at the event. Update: Download here.

  • Categories Events Interviews News Will

    New interview, Soccer Aid broadcast times, ‘Will’ update


    • The Times Online has a nice little interview with Damian Lewis:

      I used to be a bit of a party animal. These days I can’t go out relentlessly and be a father as well. I have two children, aged 3 and 2, so instead I tend to do silly dad things such as going on 150-mile bike rides with my friends just to prove that we can do it. We did a ride in the Cambrian Mountains and Brecon Beacons over three days at Easter out of a sense of adventure, but we’ve all been in physiotherapy ever since.

      Read the rest at the Times Online.

    • Soccer Aid 2010 will broadcast on ITV1 from 6:00pm to 10:00pm. Soccer Aid: Extra Time – with highlights, analysis and player reaction – will broadcast on ITV4 from 10:00pm to 11:00pm following the match. Click here for more program details.

    • According to This is Local London, Will filmed at The Royal Standard of England pub over the weekend.