The Town: Interviews

“THIS town – it’s all secrets. Everyone knows something you don’t.”

Sherlock star Andrew Scott leads the cast of three-part ITV1 drama The Town.

A contemporary story also featuring Martin Clunes, Charlotte Riley, Julia McKenzie, Gerard Kearns, Kelly Adams and remarkable teenage newcomer Avigail Tlalim.

It’s Olivier-award winning writer Mike Bartlett’s first TV drama and begins on ITV1 at 9pm on Wednesday December 5.

Unlocking a mystery over three hours of a fresh and intriguing drama.

I had the pleasure of interviewing seven cast members for ITV1’s production notes / press pack.

Below are three of my news taster stories:

– Andrew Scott on why Sherlock’s Moriarty will not be coming back from the dead.

– Julia McKenzie speaking for the first time about her role alongside the Queen and Daniel Craig in THAT Olympic Opening Ceremony film.

– Gerard Kearns on being set on fire for a film stunt.

Click here to read the full ITV Production Notes, including my seven cast interviews.


SHERLOCK star Andrew Scott has ruled out returning from the dead in the BBC1 crime drama.

The Dublin-born actor played arch-villain Moriarty who shot himself in the head at the end of the last series.

Sherlock (Benedict Cumberbatch) also appeared to be killed after jumping from a roof in the conclusion to The Reichenbach Fall.

With the brilliant Baker Street detective known to have faked his own death, speculation has grown that his nemesis might also have survived.

Last month Benedict spoke about the forthcoming third series of Sherlock, due to begin filming in the spring of 2013.

He said: “It’s nothing without that dynamic between Holmes and Moriarty.”

But Andrew, who won a BAFTA this year for his portrayal of Jim Moriarty, insists there will be no resurrection for the evil genius.

“Moriarty is dead. I don’t think there could have been any better exit for a character like that,” he says.

“I feel very proud of Sherlock. Moriarty was a very potent character and one the audience really responded to.

“But it’s important to me that he doesn’t take over. You have to take risks and play as many different things as possible.”

For Andrew that includes the lead role in a new three-part ITV1 drama series called The Town.

He plays architect Mark, forced to return from London to his home town after a shocking family incident.

“It’s just nice to show a more human side,” he adds.

Sherlock has become a global hit since the modern day take on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s consulting detective arrived on screen in 2010.

Created by Doctor Who supremo Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, it co-stars Martin Freeman as Dr John Watson.

Six feature length episodes have been broadcast so far with three more planned in the new series.


MARPLE star Julia McKenzie has spoken for the first time about starring with the Queen and Daniel Craig in their show-stealing London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony film.

Julia, 71, doubled for the Queen, sitting next to Daniel as James Bond in the helicopter seen taking off from the back garden of Buckingham Palace.

It then flew over central London, through Tower Bridge and parachuted a stuntman, posing as Her Majesty, over the Olympic Stadium at Stratford.

But the former Cranford and Fresh Fields actress said she was glad the helicopter stayed on the ground during filming of the film called Happy & Glorious.

“Daniel Craig and I spent a lot of time sitting in the helicopter but it didn’t take off with us in it – it just looked as though it did. I’m not a very good flyer!”

Julia , who plays spinster sleuth Miss Marple, also stood in for the Queen during filming inside the Palace.

“I was contacted by somebody working on the film who had worked with me before,” she revealed

“They said, ‘We don’t just want a Queen double. We’d like an actress. Why don’t you do it?’ I don’t really look like the Queen but I was a physical match.

“So I went and met the director Danny Boyle and we had a laugh. It was a couple of days at Buckingham Palace and huge fun meeting Daniel Craig. I mean, who wouldn’t do it?

“I didn’t meet the Queen, although I’ve met her several times before. But I did sit at her desk in her lovely sitting room.

“A lot of it was edited out but what was there was very funny.”

The Olivier award-winning actress, who has starred in several Stephen Sondheim musicals in the West End and Broadway, is known to be a favourite of the Queen.

Julia recently filmed a new Marple film – A Caribbean Mystery – on location in South Africa and is currently working on the first of two further ITV1 stories involving Agatha Christie’s spinster sleuth.

She also appears alongside Sherlock star Andrew Scott in new three-part ITV1 drama The Town.

The veteran actress plays retired psychotherapist Betty in the serial also starring Doc Martin star Martin Clunes and Hustle actress Kelly Adams.

“I’m rarely offered modern drama as I’ve got a bit of a bonnets and bustle face. So I jumped at this one when I was offered it.”


FORMER Shameless star Gerard Kearns ended up in flames filming a stunt for a new movie.

“I play a character who gets beaten up by a gangster and set on fire,” he said.

“They put me in a suit, doused me in a load of white stuff which they said was fire repellent and told me to lie down.

“Then they lit up a petrol bomb and threw it at me,” revealed the actor who played the Chatsworth estate’s Ian Gallagher until his dramatic exit two years ago.

The film called Wasteland tells the story of a man recently released from prison who recruits his three best friends to rob the local drugs baron who put him behind bars.

Gerard, who plays Charlie, added: “I had to wait until someone shouted, ‘You’re on fire.’ And then I had to roll myself out.

“I should have said a line at the same time but I didn’t. I just went, ‘Oh my God!’

“I can’t deny that I was excited about doing it but I was also quite nervous. And we did it twice.

“But after I’d done it the first time I was like, ‘Come on, set me on fire again!’

“There were no burns or singes and the stuntmen were fantastic. They had to wear balaclavas and pretended to be thugs so they could be close by with fire extinguishers.”

The film, due out soon, is just one of several roles Gerard has starred in since leaving The Jockey regulars behind.

As one of the original characters, would he consider returning for a guest role in the last ever Shameless series, to be screened next year?

“No I wouldn’t. Shameless was a fantastic stepping stone – but I don’t think I could go back. You can only go forwards.”

Gerard also stars as trainee undertaker Daniel in new three-part ITV1 drama The Town, which begins at 9pm on Wednesday December 5.


Martin Clunes as Mayor Len.
Charlotte Riley as Alice.
Kelly Adams as Lucy.
Avigail Tlalim as Jodie.

The Town Production Notes

ITV Drama

Big Talk Productions

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