Feature- Interview with Wire in the Blood star Robson Green

September 11, 2008 by  
Filed under Features

Robson Green InterviewAcclaimed drama Wire in the Blood returns this Friday night to ITV 1. Here, Robson Green talks about the new season, his character and performing his own stunts.

Robson Green cannot understand or empathise with people who kill, unlike his character Dr Tony Hill.

“After six series of Wire in the Blood, I’m no closer to understanding the kink that makes people kill or why people do destructive things.  Tony always sees the destructive person as a victim – not me,? says Robson.

“I recently read a case about a girl with learning difficulties who was kicked to death.  It’s terrible.  I never ask what on earth the killer was going through in their childhood that made them do that.  All I think about is the poor parents of the victims, as I have a child of my own.’’

Robson is delighted to step back into Tony’s shoes, however.

“Wire is such a powerful series and it’s an absolute joy to film.  I didn’t get that much of a break because we filmed the special episode in Texas after the last series but I always enjoy it.  The scripts are as strong as ever, the direction is still as vibrant and creative and if you have that energy people can tell.

“There’s a lot of jeopardy for Tony.  He has a near death experience of being strangled in one episode and encounters a killer who is using water and Nietzsche and fascism to destroy his victims.  Tony pieces it together and puts himself in danger.?

Tony almost drowns in the bath in one scene – one of many stunts Robson performed himself.

“Pretending I was being drowned was fine.  You just have to let the air out of your body and sink.  Crispin, my stunt double, had the easiest day, he just had to turn up and watch.?

Robson prepared for the series by getting himself fit physically and mentally.

“It would be irresponsible of me to go into the series not being prepared so I made the point of going to the gym.  I have a hell of a lot to do and I have to stay focused, especially in the last block where there is a colossal amount of dialogue.

“I’m not an actor who can just turn up – I have to get into the frame of mind first.  At night, I was running dialogue with my uncle Matheson.  He’s not an actor but he was like Martin Scorsese.?

Adds Robson:  “I love playing Tony, but I have to remain psychologically as Robson Green, fit and well.  I don’t take on stories of destructive behaviour and I’m not a criminal psychologist.  We’ve just celebrated our seventh wedding anniversary and I don’t think my wife Vanya would appreciate it if I turned up as Tony Hill.?

Despite storylines including cannibalism and ritual killings, Robson doesn’t allow himself to get scared by Wire in the Blood either.

“I’m not a fan of the horror genre myself.  I read The Exorcist and couldn’t sleep for a week.  Jaws is about as far as I’ll get and even fair rides scare me.  But I don’t get scared by our scripts any more.  The more I see of the creative process and suspend disbelief, the more fun you can have with it.  I know it’s not real.

“We all possess an interest in macabre behaviour, though.  You put yourself into the untouchable and it gets your heart rate up.  And I think the issues that Wire explores are really fascinating.?

Filming the series allows Robson to spend time in his home town of Newcastle.

“Newcastle is where I was brought up, and filming Wire in the Blood  gives me the opportunity to catch up with family.  I love seeing my mum and dad and my brother and sisters. Vanya’s not designed for the north east of England, though.  She puts on more clothes and still nearly gets pneumonia.  That’s why we’ve just been to Nice for a holiday.  If I’d had first choice it would have been Wick in Scotland.?

Since completing the new series, Robson has been busy on other projects.  He co-stars with Mark Benton in forthcoming Christmas special Clash of the Santas, which takes the characters from Northern Lights and City Lights to a Santa convention in Lithuania.

“I’ve also done a programme for Five, Extreme Fishing. It’s my first documentary and I visit places around the world including Thailand, Namibia, Costa Rica and California.  It’s quite an eclectic mix and I love fishing so I was thrilled to be asked to do it.?

He hopes to start work on a new series of Wire in the Blood later in the year.  “It’s a real accolade that it’s such a strong brand.  We never imagined it would do so well.  A lot of the success is down to investment in its look and feel.  I’d love to do more.?

Robson lives in Surrey with Vanya and has an eight-year-old son Taylor and stepdaughter Lara.  His many credits include Soldier Soldier, Casualty, Unconditional Love, Trust, Touching Evil, Close and True, Reckless, Grafters and Rocket Man.  He is also an executive producer on Coastal’s new drama Place of Execution.