What's your self-isolation set-up at the moment?
Well, I'm very lucky to have a nice house in Twickenham with a lovely garden. There are six humans (me, an actor, a professional footballer, a PR guru, an art director and a Flame operator) and two dogs and there’s enough room that we’re not in each other’s faces all the time. But it’s laptop central round the kitchen table, conference calls in the living room, Google Hangouts in the garden, and dinner is a very lively affair.
It's lockdown; aside from your family, which four people, past or present, would you most like to be quarantined with?
Thomas Cromwell (yes, I’m reading the book); Bruce Lee (so that I’m kickass fit and enlightened when I come out); Keith Floyd (sorely in need of some culinary inspiration) and Joni Mitchell (for evening singalongs around the piano).
We need entertainment, what's your favourite short film?
I’m still a huge fan of this short from Aardman… mindless Playdoh violence with a lovely twist at the end. Also, this film from our very own Simon Ellis is important to me as it really kick started a special period at Mad Cow...
You've completed Netflix. And Amazon Prime. And Disney+. It's on the hard stuff; board games. What do you pick?
It has to be Monopoly. We had a game the other night and it was carnage: hilarious, rumbustious and heart-warming… and loads of money sloshing about.
On a serious note, how do you think this situation will impact you individually, and the industry as a whole?
Hopefully it will make me kinder, more compassionate and able to appreciate the simpler things in life that are (in this household at least) proving to be the most important: love, health and happiness.
As for the industry, this crisis has shown me that we need to employ a system that is more aligned with the US, whereby crew membership of a local union provides for health insurance and a pension scheme amongst other benefits for the (largely) self-employed community we work with.
It’s high time the UK industry thought about organising into a more militant industry that protects its own and provides for them in hard times.
It’s high time the UK industry thought about organising into a more militant industry that protects its own and provides for them in hard times. I’m not suggesting we go back to the old days of the ACTT, but I feel we do need to offer a solution which would cater to situations exactly like the one we’re experiencing now.
That, of course, doesn’t come for free and advertisers, agencies and production companies should work together to find a way to organise and finance it on a permanent basis… probably with government help.