In episode 2 of Strike – The Cuckoo’s Calling we meet the character Evan Duffield, Lula Landry’s boyfriend, who is portrayed by Bronson Webb. You may recognise him as Draco Malfoy’s friend in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban or from Game of Thrones, in which his character was beheaded in the opening scenes of Season 1 by Ned Stark (played by Sean Bean). We asked Bronson: What was it like being beheaded by Sean Bean in Game of Thrones?
“This is a question that comes up a lot over the last few years due to the size and scale of Game of Thrones but, yes, it was pretty cool. What a way to die and what a great project to be part of. We actually had a replica head exactly the same as mine, which was very cool.”
Please describe for viewers who haven’t read The Cuckoo’s Calling who Evan Duffield is and what part he plays in the story.
“Evan is Lula Landry’s on-off boyfriend, a bit of a live wire who has some problems with drink and drugs, a semi talented actor – musician. He may be carrying some personal misery from when he was young, always been in the media spotlight due to being a young actor, but due to personal issues in his life the media always try and bring the worst out in him, even when he is dating Lula who he genuinely cares for even though they may fight at times. They remind me a bit of Kate Moss and Pete Doherty.”
What attracted you to the role of Evan Duffield and what was the audition process like?
“Well, to be fair, it was a call from the agent like any other in terms of audition but on reading the script and researching on the internet you knew this would be an epic piece due to the writer and reviews and the fanbase for the book. I had to prepare 10 pages of dialogue and perform this in quite a challenging room of producers and director. There were 5 faces in all. So a pretty daunting room indeed, was almost word for word so I came out genuinely happy with the meeting .”
How does this role differ from anything you’ve done before?
“To be fair, I almost always seem to play some kind of wild card in some way, but roles like these are always attractable. He has so much to think about, he’s a musician, actor in a crazy disposable world we live in today, personal issues which have affected him from young, drink and drug problems, and dating one of the world’s top supermodels. These are all great things to think about in a character, which make it intriguing to play.”
How did you get into acting?
“I seemed to struggle at school in my early days, vying to be centre of attention and wanting to be every part in the school plays. One of my teachers at my primary school mentioned to my parents that I’d be better off channelling my energy elsewhere. A friend of my mum’s son was already attending an acting school in Ravenscourt Park called Rave Theatre School (formerly Corona). I started there at 13, had my first gig at 14 and have been doing this ever since.”
Why do you think people like crime as a genre?
“I think most people like crime because crime also has so many subgenres. It almost has something for everyone, plus most of the characters can be related to by so many in the world in some way or other.”
The Strike novels are highly successful, and with the TV show being an adaptation of a J.K. Rowling book, did you feel any pressure to meet expectations?
“At first, no, but as time goes on and when you realise the extent of the piece, the following it has and then taking the writer into account, it does play a little in the back of the head that you don’t want to let all these people down, but then you also want to please the producers and directors and then the audience once released … wooooo — so maybe, yeah.”
Why does Evan Duffield wear a wolf head, and did you really get to wear it?
“Evan chooses to wear a wolf head because of the issues he has with the press and how they treat him in the media. Yes, I did wear the wolf head. They had a full-size wolf head made which was so realistic. The eyes, the fur, the look was amazing. I had great pleasure wearing it, but it was hot inside at times.”
What’s your next project?
“A couple of comedies, which is a change. I’m in an episode of MOTHERLAND for the BBC and I also worked on the very funny HOLMES AND WATSON with Will Ferrell and John C Reily.”
See Bronson Webb as Evan Duffield in the second episode of Strike – The Cuckoo’s Calling. You can catch up on the series on BBC iPlayer.
You can also find Bronson on Twitter here: @Bronson_Webb