Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 3 May 2015

Broadbent's pain at mum's illness

Jim Broadbent drew on his own experiences for his role in Exile
Jim Broadbent drew on his own experiences for his role in Exile

Jim Broadbent has revealed he drew on the pain of his mother's Alzheimer's illness to play a man suffering from the disease.

The Oscar-winning actor, who stars as retired journalist Sam in the new BBC One three-part drama Exile, said he used his own family experience to help him with the role.

"It was upsetting when mother was ill; in a way that was more upsetting than any acting will be," he told the Guardian.

"But you know, you just use all that. You remember what was painful about it.

"But it's not a disease-of-the-week drama, it's a thriller with Alzheimer's as the backdrop."

The show, which starts on May 1, was scripted by Shameless writer Paul Abbott.

It also stars John Simm as Sam's son Tom, who tries to tackle an investigative piece his father stopped working on years ago.

John admitted he was starstruck by his veteran co-star.

"At the read-through, there were moments when I'd look up and see Jim across the table and think 'wow'.

I am in awe of him; he is godlike. I knew I couldn't wing it in Exile. I've had to make sure I'm really on it."

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