Archive for the ‘Television’ Category
From Clash, October 2010…
Shane Meadows’ This is England has become the most important British films of the last decade. The characters have been reprised in This Is England ’86, a four-part television series which revisits the gang three years after the film’s climactic scenes.
“The only thing I felt I couldn’t deliver in the film was everything that I wanted to tell about the gang that I loved,” explains Meadows. “The gang are so lightly touched on in the film and four hours gives me the chance to do that. That was the selfish reason for wanting to do it.”
Also important to Meadows was that the cycle of his major films would stretch to the two year mark. For this new series, he created (alongside Scouting Book For Boys filmmaker Tom Harper, who directed the first two episodes, and Skins writer Jack Thorne) four hours worth of drama that would take just six months to hit our screens.
This time around, Vicky McClure’s Lol, a secondary character who provided a lot of warmth and stability in the initial film, has become a focal point. After starting the first episode preparing for a wedding, Lol’s character later finds herself in a harrowing experience. “It was emotionally damaging to some degree,” she muses. “You have to take yourself into a different world. But it’s one of Shane’s films, they’re quite dark and this has got that feeling again.” Meadows helped to coax her into the performance with a steady stream of suitably grim films such as the notorious Russian movie Come and See.
It was Thomas Turgoose role as Shaun that proved to be so vital to This is England’s success. Turgoose has experienced a huge personal journey since the original film. “A lot of shit has happened to me that happened to Shaun,” he concurs. “Shaun came out of it on top, got his head down and now his life’s alright. Whereas mine was a bit shit before I met all these guys.”
The bond that the gang share is as evident in real life as it is on screen. Joseph Gilgun seems to share the same friendly, light-hearted role in the cast’s dynamic that his character Woody does on screen. ““I think I speak on behalf of all of us: I’d remove my buttocks for another series,” he jokes. “If you love your job, you never work a day in your life.”