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Wild Bill - Charlie Creed-Miles interview

Wild Bill, Charlie Creed-Miles

Interview by Rob Carnevale

CHARLIE Creed-Miles talks about working with close friend Dexter Fletcher on Wild Bill, helping to choreograph the big fight scene and tapping into real emotions as a dad.

Q. You’ve known Dexter [Fletcher] as an acting colleague and as a friend for years. Were you ever going to say ‘no’?
Charlie Creed-Miles: No, it was a great script. It was about a guy struggling to be a good dad and finding his feet as a parent. I’m a dad myself and it’s not easy. So, I saw a lot in the character.

Q. How long were you on-board before it got green-lit? Did you help develop the character of Bill?
Charlie Creed-Miles: I think you always flesh things out as an actor. Dexter and I worked on it together. It was a really lovely process and I really enjoyed it. We did a read through quite early on and assembled a few cast together. Jason Flemyng was there.

Q. Was it true that you almost weren’t available when Dexter was ready to shoot?
Charlie Creed-Miles: [Laughs] Yeah, Dexter forgot to tell me that he’d got the money! I had some other job coming up. But he said: “Well, move the dates and make them wait.” But we were locked in!

Q. You’ve made an East End Western with Wild Bill. How did you choreograph the final fight scene – apparently you contributed to the bite moment?
Charlie Creed-Miles: Yeah, I had a mate who was getting beaten up quite badly, and who was on the floor getting kicked by several guys. He was on his own but he managed to grab hold of one of their legs and sink his teeth into part of his foot or leg and this fella ended up screaming in pain. Every time the other guys kicked him, the guy who was being bitten would shake some more, and my friend said: “Right, tell your mates to f**k off to the other side of the road…” And they walked off. It always stuck in my mind, so I suggested that to Dexter.

Q. This is one of your great roles. How did you go about communicating with your younger actors? The scene on the rooftop offers one of the great speeches about trying to do the right thing…
Charlie Creed-Miles: It’s always difficult and you worry about getting it right. When you’re working on something you have a picture in your head and then when it comes to doing it you only get that one chance and you just hope that you deliver the goods on the technical side of it. On the emotional side, Dexter and I talked about that rooftop scene a lot because I was getting caught up in the acting side of it. But I said to myself that I had to remember that this is just a dad talking to his kid. It’s not a Shakespearean monologue. It’s about something really important and so I tried to do it like that. Sometimes as an actor you get to the bit where no one is interrupting you for the whole page and you end up going into a zone. But that’s not what that scene was about. So, I told myself: “Remember what you’re actually doing here and try and connect with that!” It wasn’t difficult then because I am a dad myself and so I just connected with that emotion and tried to live that moment.

Read our review of Wild Bill

Read our interview with Dexter Fletcher