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Luke Evans: Debut TV director Michael Sheen ‘knows what he needs from actors’

16 May 2023 3 minute read
Luke Evans during a Bafta conversation event at Wales Screen Summit. Image: Kacper Pilzys/Afanti Media

Dracula Untold star Luke Evans has said Michael Sheen in his debut as a television director “knows what he needs from you” as an actor.

The 44-year-old Welsh actor is starring in upcoming BBC drama series The Way alongside Frost/Nixon star Sheen and It’s A Sin actor Callum Scott Howells.

The three-part “emotional and darkly humorous story” is set to focus on how a family, the Driscolls, contend with a civil uprising in their small Welsh industrial town.

Speaking at Wales Screen Summit, with Bafta chief executive Jane Millichip, Evans said: “It’s Michael Sheen’s first directing job. You’d never think it.

“You look at the picture board in your trailer and think, how has he managed to get all these people in this Welsh story? Because he’s Michael Sheen.

“As a director he’s great, because he’s an actor. He understands how to speak to an actor. He knows what he needs and how to get it out of you.”

Evans, also known for Beauty And The Beast and The Pembrokeshire Murders, stars as Hogwood, a mercenary in pursuit of the Driscolls, in the series.

The drama, written by Sherwood’s James Graham, has been co-created by Sheen, Graham and documentary filmmaker Adam Curtis.

Evans also said he is “getting to the point” where he “would love” to try being a director in the future.


He said said: “I’ve done 37 movies, I’ve seen some great directing and some terrible directing, it’s just the way it is…

“I’m a stickler for detail. Continuity’s my thing, I can’t bear it when it’s bad. I would love to do it here, bring it to Wales. There’s so many wonderful stories to be told – who knows, I might even be writing.”

The Welsh actor also spoke being a “proud gay man” and starring in his upcoming film Our Son, in which he plays a husband going through a custody battle with Pose actor Billy Porter.

Evans said: “I knew there would come a point where I felt it was a story worth telling … (that) we’re all the same, we’re all going through equal pain and heartache and I felt this story did that.

“It’s not the first gay character I’ve played – but it’s really meaty, poignant, emotional, powerful and real. Not sensational.

“Doesn’t have to be sensational or to shock. This is just real life, and I wanted to tell that story … as heartbreaking as it was.

“Everyone will be able to relate to it, not necessarily just for the LGBTQ+ community. It’s a story of hope.”

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