Warwick Davis and Gary Oldman Discuss Their Exciting Projects “Willow” and “Slow Horses”
The talented cast of the Harry Potter film series has been keeping busy with some seriously exciting projects. Warwick Davis is reprising his titular role from the iconic 1988 film Willow in a new series on Disney+, while Gary Oldman is starring in the latest season of Apple TV+’s hit show Slow Horses.
During a press conference held shortly before the show’s two-episode premiere, Davis confessed that he could never have imagined returning to the magical world of Willow but couldn’t be more thrilled to do so. He described the experience as having a layered meaning for both the character and himself as an actor.
For me, one of the most enjoyable things about the series were those callbacks to events that had happened in the film. When I, as a character, talk about those events, that was a really fun way of looking back at those things, and I think fans will get a kick out of [them].
Another especially sentimental element of the show is the character of Mims, Willow’s daughter, who is played by Davis’s real-life daughter, Annabelle.
Annabelle plays Mims, Willow’s daughter, and she’s a brilliant actor in her own right now. We had a lot of fun playing the scenes together. Obviously, we’ve got that natural chemistry between us, which I think really shines in the scenes we have together. I’m immensely proud of her work.
As with any reboot, the new series posed the significant challenge of doing justice to the source material, and Davis said this was a major focus of the entire cast and crew.
We wanted to do the very best job that we could and deliver a series that everyone could enjoy, be it the fans of the original or the new audience we hope to bring to this show. We had that in mind, the whole time. That can give you a lot of responsibility and bring a lot of weight to the whole thing. But nonetheless, the experience was a fun one. It’s one I look back on with great affection and fondness.
The actor also spoke about the series on the December 1 episode of Sky News’s film and TV podcast, Backstage, where he reflected on how important his starring role in the original film was for his career.
It was huge impact. I mean, prior to ‘Willow,’ I’d been seen in ‘Return of the Jedi.’ Well, not seen, hidden behind a furry mask of Wicket the Ewok. So that was my on-set experience and the film ‘Labyrinth’ as well. So this, for me, was a real leap of faith.
He credits executive producer George Lucas and his own leap of faith in writing the story with Davis in mind for the lead role. The 52-year-old describes the experience as “groundbreaking,” marking a significant turning point as he became comfortable acting as himself rather than behind a costume for the first time.
.@WarwickADavis looks back on his 41-year acting career.
— Willow (@WillowOfficial) November 30, 2022
Much like the Potter films, the fantasy nature of Willow requires a lot of imagination from the actors since plenty of crucial elements of the show are added in postproduction.
It’s all about creating that world in your head because you can’t see most of it. It’s going to be added in by ILM later on. It’s about really putting yourself in the moment, being there within that fantasy world, because if you’re doing that, the viewer can then join you on that journey.
Featured on the same episode of Backstage was Oldman, who spoke about the second season of Slow Horses. The actor discussed how the show poses a bit of a unique dilemma for viewers thanks to its somewhat questionable characters.
While he reflected on aspiring to be like the characters in films like the James Bond series, he admitted that Slow Horses is not quite the same in this regard.“With Slow Horses, I think maybe some of the characters you watch and go, ‘Oh, thank God I’m not like that!'” Oldman joked.
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The first five episodes of Willow are now streaming on Disney+, while Season 1 and the first five episodes of Season 2 of Slow Horses are available on Apple TV+.