Thursday 26 February 2015

Aidan Turner at the BFI Poldark Q&A

source: middle-earth news

Here's something I wrote for Middle-earth News earlier today:

If you love Aidan Turner as Kili in The Hobbit then you’ll want to know about his next big thing: playing the lead in the BBC drama Poldark.  

Poldark was a big hit on TV in the 1970s but 2015 brings a new adaptation of the novels.  Aidan plays Ross Poldark, a man who’s a bit of a hero, doesn’t back away from a fight and falls for a girl who’s taboo. Sounds familiar? But there the similarity with Kili ends, for Ross is an 18th century Englishman in this period drama set in Cornwall.

With Poldark about to hit our TV screens, Middle-earth News was invited to a preview screening of the first episode along with a Q & A with Aidan, his co-star Eleanor Tomlinson, screen writer Debbie Horsfield and director Ed Bazalgette. 

Aidan joked how he had never heard of Poldark before the offer came in. ‘I said, “what the f’s Poldark?” I had to Google it, then I called my mum and she said, ‘You’d better not mess this up’.”

Aidan then had a day to read the book before the first meeting. We all know that Aidan didn’t read The Hobbit before meeting Peter Jackson so I guess he didn’t want to make the same mistake again. He has since read more. He said, ‘How far do you go with something like that? I read the first four [of 12]…’ which he felt for him was enough to give him a feel for the characters and plot ’You could read more: I suppose you should …I’m not smart.’

Aidan, who is Irish, was offered the role without an audition so no one had heard his ‘Ross’ accent before the read-through. He said, ‘The read-through was terrifying … everyone hears your voice for the first time. That was particularly scary for me. I thought, “Oh S**t they’re going to fire me”’

Ross is given to moody stares. Had he practised his Poldark pout?
‘I pout [as Ross] quite a bit I’ve just realised. It’s natural – what I do… The eyebrows: they’re there for frowning. No. I really don’t think of those kind of things; they just seem to happen and they give themselves their own life. Like the hair. The hair was great.'

There were moments of teasing between Eleanor and Aidan. When she said her dog in Poldark was ‘amazing’ Aidan retorted, ‘He’s not amazing. He’s a dog’.

Eleanor got her own back when asked about a favourite moment:
‘Watching Aidan get a spray tan’
‘Oh there you go,’ responds Aidan to the laughter from the audience, ‘That just didn’t happen.’

You can find out more about Poldark on Poldarked and on Twitter @Poldarked and facebook 

Poldark  starts on BBC One in the UK on Sunday 8 March at 9 pm and in the US on PBS Masterpiece on 14 June. It will also be on ABC in Australia.

Don’t miss it!

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