Belfast Telegraph

Copley: Villains aren't fun for me

Sharlto Copley has revealed how he enjoyed showing the different sides of his Maleficent character.

The South African star, who plays King Stefan in the Disney live-action remake alongside Angelina Jolie as Sleeping Beauty's evil fairy, said he liked the fact that the monarch wasn't one-dimensional.

"I wanted to play him with a real degree of humanity. And because I'm a filmmaker at heart, I know a villain can't be too humanised and the audience can't empathise with him too much," he told Collider.

"Villains are not fun for me to play, as such. But caricature-ish, intense behaviours that are based on real human traits are interesting. It creates a more intense experience of life for you to watch."

Sharlto, who collaborated with Neill Blomkamp on Elysium and District 9, said it was his decision to give the character a Scottish accent.

"For me, the starting point was actually before I even did my test, when I decided that I wanted him to have a specific type of Scottish accent. The accent is always critical for me because it informs a lot of the character," he explained.

"In this case, I chose an accent that I felt would work equally well as a common man and a king. I had to represent, with the accent and voice, someone who is a normal, common guy, and someone who you think could be a noble, strong king, so I chose the Scottish."

The 40-year-old also revealed he saw Angelina as an equal on set.

"I had to leave the whole 'most famous woman in the world' thing at the door and just do this. Thankfully, that's what she wanted from me," he said.

Maleficent, which also stars Elle Fanning and Sam Riley, is top of the UK and US box office.

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