Rupert Graves, Martin Freeman and Rufus Sewell on “Charles II: The Power And The Passion” filming (The Times, 15.11.2003)


Rupert Graves
“What strikes you is how bling bling it is. They went in for really aggressive shows of grandeur, just dripping in gold with huge hair and make-up. It was very sexy.”
“One of the things about a political story like this is that there’s no limit to what you can say, you can even exaggerate it — no one is going to sue. And there are so many parallels between then and now. Politically, Charles creates a Parliament and a King’s Council, which are like new Labour. The Dutch war stuff is very similar to the Iraqi war, too, with people saying the same sort of things, such as ‘it’ll be over in a week’ and ‘we have to get rid of these tyrants’”.

Martin Freeman:
“You look around the court scene and the actors and you think: ‘Wow — these are people I really like’”.
“We’re all young enough to still be hungry, not all too fat and complacent having done this 20 times. We’re really keen to do it well. And that’s why it’s great to work with someone like Ian McDiarmid. Whenever I’m in doubt I just look at what he’s doing and try to copy it. I’m just doing a really bad imitation of him. He’s probably quite embarrassed about it.”

Rufus Sewell:
“The fact that the sets have been built so that you can walk from one room to another, the way that you can in a normal house — you’ve got your bedroom that leads to your little closet that leads to your little kingly velvet toilet — means you’re not constantly reminded that it’s a fake. It’s a big help. Generally in films, when you walk through a door, it’s all polystyrene, so you have to work harder to put yourself in that world.”
“When you read the script you do think, ‘Goodness, there’s a lot of shagging’. But it’s actually only with one of the characters that you see them in bed together. I mean it’s actually quite boring watching people in bed.”
“During rehearsals you’re worrying what makes people kingly and my theory was that what makes you kingly is people doing what you want them to. When we first had lessons in courtly behaviour we did this exercise. When I walked in the room everyone stood up, and moved when I moved, and I remember thinking, ‘Oh, this is nice!’ You’ve got to be careful: 12 weeks of people deferring to you physically — it’s dangerously pleasant at first. But it does get pretty tedious in the end.” 

http://www.usva.info/2005/charles-ii.html

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