Ophelia Lovibond is expressing her disappointment that Sky1 dropped her series Hooten & the Lady after a single series.
The news came from US broadcaster The CW last month that Sky would not be ordering a second series of the eight-part adventure series that starred Lovibond and Michael Landes as globe-trotting adventurers.
That was obviously an unfortunate development for Lovibond, who has praised Hooten & the Lady as being a necessary alternative to the many issue-oriented dramas on telly these days.
“I was a bit disappointed – Mike [Landes] and I both were, because it was really fun,” she told Digital Spy. “Hooten & the Lady, I felt, filled a whole different need, it was just pure escapism – The Handmaid’s Tale was phenomenal, but not every single piece of television needs to be The Handmaid’s Tale.
“I think it’s nice to have something that’s like Romancing the Stone – just very light-hearted escapism. I don’t really know why it didn’t [continue] – it got great numbers, great viewing figures, and we loved filming it, going all around the world. It was a dream, really.
“I loved doing the action scenes – I would love to do more. They’re talking about Idris Elba for the next Bond – I’m like, excuse me, hello?”
The barmy Hooten & the Lady has a tremendously impressive A-list cast, including comedy favourite Jessica Hynes, W1A’s Jonathan Bailey and legendary former Bond Girl Jane Seymour.
Luckily, Ophelia Lovibond is back on telly this autumn in W1A, which is airing on Mondays at 10pm on BBC Two.
While it would be amazing to see many more incompetent adventures of the Way Ahead Task Force and Perfect Curve, it seems not everything is built to last.
W1A finally returns to our screens this evening (September 18), though star Ophelia Lovibond – who plays Izzy Gould – has backed up series creator John Morton’s hint that it will end after the new series.
“I haven’t spoken to John about it, but I think it’s just such hard work,” she told Digital Spy.
“There was a bit of a gap between the second and third series, because it does take a long time to put it all together. We all love doing it, but we got the vague sense that it was the last one [while filming].”
Over the past two series, one of the best things about the show has been the hilarious meaningless media-speak and perfectly timed one liners.
Ophelia Lovibond talks about W1A and her role in Goodbye Christopher Robin, and Victoria Coren Mitchell discusses the Only Connect book, TV series and Women Talking About Cars. Plus there’s the Factoids, Non-Stop Oldies and the latest entertainment and lifestyle news.
Ophelia Lovibond, who recently appeared in The Libertine at Theatre Royal Haymarket (also known for her role in BBC1’s W1A), is currently starring in Githa Sowerby’s The Stepmother at the Minerva Theatre in Chichester. Written and set in the mid 1920s, the play sees the titular stepmother and orphan, Lois, caring for the two adolescent children of her husband. What emerges is one of the earliest stage discussions of patriarchy and gender, heightened in a period when women were still in the process of receiving the vote and gaining equal rights.
How did you explore the character of Lois?
A lot of it is there in the writing. Githa Sowerby’s writing is so rich, there’s so much intonation there in terms of the character’s internal monologue and their psychology – considering the play was written in 1924 and Freud was writing from 1912. What she’s talking about is groundbreaking: to rail against the patriarchy. This fleshes out why Lois acts the way she does but also why she swallows a lot of it – why she just accepts and protects her stepchildren, against the malignant influence of their father.
You have to play the same character aged both 19 and 29, how did you approach that?
The ten year age gap is really fun to explore – and how to express that physically, vocally and in terms of posture. You get no peek into that period – you have to think what it would have been like to see her living under the force of her husband. She would have had to harden in a lot of respects. You change a lot in your twenties. The period seems to have been a sink or swim scenario but she decided to swim. She decided which battles to fight and which to let go by. Continue reading Ophelia Lovibond: ‘Women’s rights are human rights’
The actress is making her professional stage debut in The Effect
Ophelia Lovibond is palpably excited to be taking to the stage. The actress, known for film and television roles including Man Up, Guardians of the Galaxy, Elementary and W1A, is making her professional theatrical debut in The Effect at Sheffield Theatres next month.
“I’m so excited; it’s really quite cloying how excitable I am. The luxury which I am realising I’ve not had working in film and television is the time to figure out every different facet of the character and discuss everything – it’s very addictive.”
Lovibond didn’t go to drama school, opting instead to study English at the University of Sussex – “reading novels every week – what a chore!” – where she largely stayed away from acting because the theatre group was “such a strong bonded group of people that I kind of felt a bit outside of it”.
She talks of her current experience watching the rest of the cast of The Effect in rehearsals as a “sort of training”, and also feels that she got a good grounding in her early work; her first TV role was aged 12 in The Wilsons.
“I was really lucky, getting television work and everything when I was young. You do all these TV jobs and you learn very quickly what works and what doesn’t so personally I’ve never felt ‘I wish I’d gone to drama school’ ever. When it came to making choices and filling out UCAS forms and all that, I just thought ‘I want to go and study English; I don’t want to go and study drama’ because I’d been doing it already.”
On May 13 Ophelia Lovibond attended a gala screening for Man Up at the Curzon Mayfair in London. The gallery has been updated with over 30 pictures of her at the event with hopefully more to come (with thanks to Mouza for the HQs). Be sure to watch an interview with her on the red carpet down below.
We love watching Brit-star Ophelia Lovibond in BBC’s satire W1A, and cannot wait for her hilarious turn in this month’s rom-com ‘Man Up’ – opposite Lake Bell and Simon Pegg. Here’s what we learnt when we interviewed the rising actress…
She’s a total romantic…
“I’m a sucker for a grand gesture – as long as it’s not too gooey. The most romantic thing someone did was surprise me at the airport, after being away for 3 months in Los Angeles. You always see people with signs and you’re like ‘isn’t that lovely?’ and then you see your own name on one – that isn’t a taxi driver’s! I was very impressed.”
Unlike her character Jessica in Man Up, self-help books aren’t really her thing…
“I’ve never read a self help book…the most self-help I’ve read is on a beer mat.”
She’s got the coolest birthday buddy…
“Me and Benicio Del Toro [her Guardians of the Galaxy co-star] were sat waiting between takes when he turned to me and went, ‘Aquarius.’ I was like, ‘Yes?’ and he said ‘we share the same birthday you and I,’ smiling and nodding. Like we were in some Aquarius club!”
Guess who was her career mentor…
“I was revising for my A-levels at the same time as doing Nathan Barley with Ben Whishaw, and I didn’t know whether to go to drama school. He was like, ‘What’s your instinct telling you?’ I thought I’d rather study English at university – acting I can do until I pop my clogs.”
She’s gets most recognised for her role in…
“Mr. Popper’s Penguins with Jim Carrey. He’s not the firecracker he is on screen; he’s calm and thoughtful. It was freezing in New York and he organised a truck serving hot waffles with chocolate sauce to keep everyone going.”
Ophelia Lovibond and Hugh Skinner are back playing lowly cogs in BBC mockumentary W1A; in the meantime their high-flying Hollywood and stage careers are just getting going. They tell Samuel Fishwick about partying with Russell Crowe and dinners with Jim Carrey
With her glossy good looks and private school diction, Ophelia Lovibond makes an unlikely tea lady. Yet the doe-eyed actress is so con-vincing as PA Izzy Gould in W1A, the BBC send-up of itself, that she is often asked to make coffee runs by unsuspecting staff while filming at Broadcasting House. ‘They all think I work there,’ she sniggers. ‘One lady even offered to show me where the nice milk was kept in the fridge.’
The line between art and reality is often wafer thin in the satire, a follow-up to Twenty Twelve, the BAFTA-winning fly-on-the-wall mockumentary that followed the trials of the fictional Olympic Deliverance Commission in the run-up to London 2012. By way of example Lovibond says: ‘We got stuck when we were filming in the Broadcasting House foyer this series because our passes didn’t actually work and the guard refused to wave us through.’
The first series of W1A had widespread appeal, despite its BBC in-jokes, as it parodied the jargon of modern management. Leading the cast is Hugh Bonneville’s Head of Values Ian Fletcher, who offers up lines such as: ‘[we are] about resetting the dial for the BBC and perhaps shining a new light on that dial, or at least shining the old light but with a new bulb.’ Another favourite is Jessica Hynes’ PR Siobhan Sharpe, who says: ‘OK, you wanna upsize your footprint, then you gotta get different shoes.’