Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Winstone no fan of cookery shows

Ray Winstone has criticised the glut of cookery and reality shows on the small screen

Ray Winstone has criticised the glut of cookery and reality shows on the small screen.

The Sexy Beast star, 56, said TV drama is now better than film but it is being squashed in the schedules.

Asked whether he thought drama was going through a golden age, he replied: "Not yet. I think we're getting there.

"What started the ball rolling was probably (US broadcaster) HBO bringing great actors and making their dramas like cinema.

"You get more and more good scripts from TV now than you do in film. But you turn on the TV now and all you see is cookery programmes and Big Brother and all that kind of stuff.

"There is room for that. I think that we are getting better drama. We just need more of it."

Winstone added: "I know it's a selfish thing to say because I'm an actor and I like doing that sort of thing, but as a viewer I want to watch great drama, I don't want to see a geezer cooking a boiled egg.

"I want to see something that's relevant to today or just takes me away somewhere, to another planet. That's good drama. I think we need more of it."

The Beowulf and Great Expectations actor did have praise for one cookery star, saying of the late celebrity chef: "Keith Floyd was all right."

But he had harsher words for film, saying that TV drama is now better than the movies.

Speaking at the launch of Sky's new dramas, he said: "The best scripts are coming from TV now, there is a lot of c**p in the films isn't there?"

Winstone, who starred in the big-screen remake of The Sweeney, joked: "At the moment they want to make a lot of those kind of movies like The Sweeney."

The British actor plays the head of a gang of smugglers in Sky1 HD's new drama Moonfleet, an adaptation of John Meade Falkner's novel set in the 18th century.

He said the drama was "relevant to today" with its stories of "people trying to survive".

Winstone was speaking as Sky 1 announced new medical drama Critical, which unfolds in real time. The 13-part series has been written and created by Jed Mercurio, who is known for Bodies and Line Of Duty.

Forthcoming dramas include Fleming (Sky Atlantic), with Dominic Cooper as Bond creator Ian Fleming and Dracula (Sky Living) featuring Jonathan Rhys Meyers in the lead role. Ashley Walters stars as a policeman in Nightshift and Piper, Ben Whishaw and Lindsay Duncan have been cast in Foxtrot, the tale of a gun heist gone wrong, both on Sky Arts.

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