This week I had the opportunity to send a list of questions to three stars of the first feature film from Apple Park Films; Little Pieces, directed by Adam Nelson. Finnian Nainby-Luxmoore, Matt Jones and Graham Cawte gave up some of their time to answer my questions on their parts in this 80 minute feature. Find the plot description below which I have lifted from my very own review:
“ The debut micro-budget (Produced for £6000) feature film from Adam Nelson, entitled LITTLE PIECES, focuses on two young men, Michael (Finnian Nainby-Luxmoore) and Eric (Matt Jones), battling with the dramas and complications around them, which will inevitably change their lives forever.”
In this interview we talk with Graham who plays David, the alcoholic father of one of the troubled young protagonists of this feature who hates his life and the people around him.
Please find Graham’s responses below. Enjoy!
RT Writeups: How did you first come across the film LITTLE PIECES?
Graham: Little Pieces was advertised on StarNow, I liked the sound of the film, the role of David was something I felt I could deliver with genuine feeling, so I applied; the auditions were quite tough, there were about 5 or 6 on the panel, I had to act drunk.
RT Writeups: You have a great and complex background in the film industry. Please tell me where does LITTLE PIECES sit with you in terms of personal achievement?
Graham: I’m very proud of Little Pieces, my main area in the Industry is live Theatre, but Little Pieces has to rank number one on my list of film roles, to create such a wonderful film on such a low budget was a stroke of genius from Adam.
RT Writeups: Your portrayal of an alcoholic father is very impressive and obviously distressing at times – Did you find it hard to get yourself in the mind-set for this character on a regular basis?
Graham: I drew from a lot of personal experience to develop David, I have lived around alcoholism for a large part of my adult life, not me, but a very close family member, I also lost everything when my Business collapsed in the credit crunch, plus my marriage, so I understood exactly what total despair was, I didn’t have any problem getting into character each day, but that’s really down to my theatrical background, I’m able to go from being me to the character I’m playing very easily, I’m not one of those actors that has to hide away, not talk to someone to drag up all the feelings they need.
RT Writeups: What was it like to work with Adam Nelson? Have you worked with him before?
Graham: I’d never worked with Adam before, Adam was very easy going, we talked about each scene as it came along, and he just allowed me and Matt to just go for it, we used the script more as a guide, much of what we say was improvised, just ensuring that we got the message Adam wanted across to the viewer.
Adam is the most talented writer I have come across, he has a talent for creating complex situations with the simplest of words, so clever.
Since the film Adam and I have kept in constant contact, we only live 10 miles apart, we are currently working on a couple of other projects, both feature films, Adam also manages my Show reel.
RT Writeups: Individually, what did you find to be the most challenging aspect of your role?
Graham: I’ve got three answers for that one, working with an all-male team meant that the catering wasn’t particularly good, in fact, non-existent, so much so that we had quite a few ruined scenes due to the sound pole man continually having a rumbling belly, and whilst they always had coffee in the rest room, we had to steal the milk from fridges belonging to other departments in the College we were using, and often pinch cups and spoons, in fact spoons were so rare, that once we found one, Adam cello taped it to the wall.
During the fight scene on the stairs, Matt hit me so hard, that my head caught the corner of the stairs, and knocked me out, once I came round Adam enquired that I was ok and whilst still in a daze I heard the words, ok, let’s do that again 😦
I think the most challenging aspect of the role though was trying to get across pain and anguish of a man in total despair, a hatred of his life, and that of his children’s, but putting it together in a way which didn’t fall over into a farce, would have been so easy to create a comical Homer Simpson character.
RT Writeups: What is next for Graham Cawte?
Graham: I’ve got a lot coming up, I’m off to Istanbul to film a new feature called Dervish and Ballerina in August, I’m also in Panto during the summer in Reading, and a new season of Interactive theatre starts at The Langstone Hotel Hayling Island in October, plus the two features I’m involved in with Adam in 2016.
I also teach drama at The Diva Academy of Arts in Southampton, and in 2016 I’m extending my teaching by moving into teaching L.A.M.D.A Syllabus exams, I’m taking the Syllabus teacher workshops in September and October this year, and will be on the LAMDA Register in November, so hopefully parents will see me as a good option, a teacher who is also a very experienced professional actor.
A Big Thank You to Graham Cawte for taking the time out of his busy schedule to talk to Real-time Write-ups. We wish him all the best in his career and hope to see more of him in the coming years.
Graham Cawte Show Reel
VHX (Worldwide) – available from http://littlepieces.vhx.tv/
Indie Reign – available from https://www.indiereign.com/video/little-pieces
Buy: £6 ($10)
Rent: £3 ($5)
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