Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

Kinnear avoided dad's comedy shadow

Rory Kinnear admits he avoided comedy roles for a long time

Rory Kinnear has admitted he steered away from comedy roles for a long time because he didn't want to end up in the shadow of his sitcom star father Roy Kinnear.

The 35-year-old actor - hotly tipped to be the next Doctor Who - has trodden the boards with the Royal Shakespeare Company and Royal National Theatre, depicted Denis Thatcher in Margaret Thatcher: The Long Walk To Finchley and played M's long-standing sidekick Bill Tanner in the Bond movies Quantum Of Solace and Skyfall. But this year he made his first starring appearance in a sitcom, in Count Arthur Strong on BBC Two.

Rory said: "I'd steered away from doing any out-and-out comedy for a while, just because my dad was so well-known for it, or perhaps it was because other things came along which I ended up doing, I don't know.

"But I grew up going to various recordings of sitcoms and what was fun about doing one myself was that I realised how live recordings haven't really changed much in 30 years. I guess there was a romantic part of me that was doing it to see what my dad did, and also to be aware of how difficult it is to get it right and do it well."

His dad Roy appeared in a string of much-loved sitcoms including Cowboys, Doctor At Large, Man About The House and George And Mildred.

Meanwhile, Rory next appears in Channel 4's new four-part drama Southcliffe, about a quiet market town devastated by a spate of shootings after a lone gunman goes on the rampage.

He revealed of his character: "He's a TV reporter who grew up in the town but when he was young his father died in an accident.

"He's never really gone back until he's assigned to cover this massacre, and in so doing he's having to reconnect and re-engage himself with memories and tragedies that he probably had long buried and never really dealt with.

"Obviously with my part, he's an outsider to the community, so it was mainly me doing interviews with people, or wandering or driving around by myself!

"I'd only do one or two days with each character to have that engagement, but it was great working with Eddie (Marsan), and briefly with Shirley (Henderson), and Al Weaver, who I did a production of Hamlet with about 10 years ago."

:: Southcliffe begins on Channel 4 on Sunday, August 4.

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