Nicholas Galitzine

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Jacket & top by BLK DNM. Trousers by TOPMAN.

Have you ever won a contest unrelated to acting?
I have won a few competitions most of which were related: I went to a very serious sporting school, Dulwich College, so I ended up competing in national rugby, football and athletics competitions. Although I would have to say my proudest competition winning would have to have been my glorious victory in my first egg and spoon race aged 5.

Being a writer & performer of music as well as an actor, would you rather be able to memorize your lines in one read or would you rather never forget a song or lyric idea again?
Memorise lines “in one read” for sure! In my opinion the most important thing for us as actors is the portrayal of the character and the way they feel and so you would be able to get to that a lot quicker. Song lyrics are usually so intertwined with melody it’s actually quite hard to forget.

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Vest by NEIL BARRETT.

Would you rather collaborate on a song with a producer of your choosing or star in a film with a director of your choosing?
I would have to say I would prefer to work with a director of my choosing. I think I have much more of an acute sense of taste when it comes to directors. For me, music has always been more of an introspective activity, and what I listen to is usually quite inconsequential as long as it makes me feel something. And therefore when I play it’s usually about something I feel, whereas with film it’s about how other people, other characters feel, which I find much more intriguing.

Have you ever watched an entire season of a television show in less than 24 hours?
So I’m one of these heathens who hasen’t signed up for a Netflix subscription. When I went to LA for the first time, I was staying with a friend, who lo and behold had a Netflix subscription. I felt it would be unwise of me NOT to make full use of this subscription so when he was out at work I watched an entire season of The Office – about 20 episodes long. And they say actors aren’t productive.

Did you have any childhood heros?
My first hero was the great English rugby player Jason Robinson. I remember being in such awe about the way he moved – stepping from side to side… he was ALWAYS the most difficult player to tackle. I tried to base my whole style on him, ducking in and out between my family as they set the table for dinner. Then as I grew up I started getting into film and music. The first ‘grown up’ film I watched was Top Gun. My Dad being a pilot, must have hoped this education would maybe steer me down the career path of aeronautics. My love for music really began when I started listening to Queen. I fell in love with the way Freddie Mercury performed, the theatrics, the sense of euphoria he created. An all round first class entertainer. My last hero is Orlando Bloom. When we went on holiday to visit family in Greece the only film we took was The Lord of the Rings and I was so in awe of his performance as Legolas. Even after the 10th viewing I hadn’t had enough. And, apparently Greek TVs have a slow-mo feature. On my last trip to LA I actually found myself eating dinner opposite Mr Bloom. BUT I didn’t have the courage to go up and speak to him, all I could mutter under my breath was, “They’re taking the Hobbits to Isengard”.

If you could pick one person to narrate your life, who would you pick?
It would be so easy to say Morgan Freeman. The only man who could perhaps challenge Morgan’s dulcet tones is the Great Barry White – “Oooooh yeh”.

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Sweater by TOM FORD.

What was the first trip you took without any family?
School trips to Spain. I would like to say my parents paid for a very educational and character building trip. Spanish Girls.


Would you rather have a role in a Star Wars film or a super hero film?

Those who know me know that I am perhaps one of the biggest Stars Wars nerds (ask me about a certain theory about Supreme Leader Snoke and a deceased Sith Lord). Stars Wars by a country mile.

If you could spend one year as a high-level professional in any industry, what would you pick? I.E. if you picked ‘footballer’ you wouldn’t be Messi all of a sudden – you would play for a team in the bottom 10, but you wouldn’t be embarrassingly bad.
Well if I would be incompetent at any job I would love to be an incompetent astronaut. Though it would probably get me killed, I have a deep fascination with space and the secrets of the universe.

What is your most visited website?
YouTube. One video of a talking dog and I’m done for hours.

What is your least favourite holiday?
Holidays within the borders of the United Kingdom. I’m an adventurer at heart and I need to see the world.

Your car breaks down on a country road and it is a three hour walk back to town. Would you rather have: a friend for company or a fully charged music playing device & headphones?
It’s a very close contest between my best mate and singing the soundtrack to Tenacious D all the way home. Friends can only be interesting so for long.

If you had to give up meat or alcohol for a year, which would you pick?
I feel we could all potentially benefit from a few less Sunday mornings feeling like crap so I’m gonna give up alcohol. Not in real life, just in this.

What is your favourite film sequel of all time?
Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. That Ewok party looked mental. Talk about hangovers.

Want more? Watch our behind-the-scenes film.

Nicholas Galitzine can be seen now in High Strung.

As told to Paul Vaughan for TPJ
Creative Director & Photographer: Jessie Craig
Stylist: Christopher Preston
Grooming: Jennie Roberts using Ojon & Origins

Jing Lusi

Top by BIMBA Y LOLA. Skirt by SANDRO.

Where is your favourite place to read a new script?
In bed. I am prone to emotional outburst when reading scripts, whether it be crying or hysterical laughter. I used to take myself to cafes, parks and other quaint public places to make a day of it, but I have learnt that in order for others to not think I am mad, it is best to stay within the privacy of my own walls.

What/who do you think you’ve photographed more than anything else?
My dog Nori. Before Nori, it was food.

You appeared in Stan Lee’s Lucky Man, if you were to write a comic book what abilities would your heroine possess?
My heroine would be called Urbangirl. She would have the ability to eat anything without getting fat. She feels brilliant even after 3 hours sleep. She does not mind walking the dog in the rain. In fact she loves it. (Sidenote: Her dog has the superpower of not needing to poo. Ever.) She never has to exercise. She has the patience of a saint during rush hour. She is never late. She can walk in 5” heels with the grace of a swan and even stand comfortably in them all night. Oh, and she can totally handle her drink.

Shirt by APC.

Lucky Man concerns a man who can control luck, other than gambling, how would you use that power?
I am not sure I would use it for anything. I think luck is related to karma or some form of universal energy. I see it as a manifestation of choices made sometime in your past. Therefore I would be scared to manipulate, abuse or drain a resource bigger than me. Interestingly, in Lucky Man, luck is portrayed as a double-edged sword – it has a dark side. If you look at the price Harry Clayton (Jimmy Nesbitt) and those close to him pay throughout the series, it makes you think twice about wanting to control your own wheel of fortune.

Would you rather have a photographic memory or read and write twice as fast?
Definitely read and write twice as fast. I am currently developing a few projects and I am such an awful procrastinator. Which is most unfortunate when my job literally involves reading and writing. I was the same when I was studying law. To make it worse, during my finals, my friends told me about this new website called Facebook. I thought I would have a look. Since then my productivity has flat lined. For this reason I am not on Twitter.

If you could pick any artist from history to be the ‘muse’ of, who would you pick?
Walt Disney. I grew up with his films and they made my childhood. Imagine being immortalised as a Disney princess. That would make my life. I would have some serious mum-cool points with my kids. Actually, people used to call me ‘Pocahontas’ when I was a child. That just goes to show how far we have come since the 90s, when American Indians would be clumped together with East Asians!

What was the last book you read?
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg. It is extraordinary to learn that we are not in control of the decisions that we make; our habits are. There is a great example of a fish swimming in the water, when another fish swims past and asks how the water is today. The first fish replies, “what is water?”. We can be so oblivious to the currents that carry us through life, thinking somehow we are not responsible for ourselves and that something externally greater is. In reality, our subconscious control our currents, and reading this book I realised I have some serious water purification to commence.

How many times did you move before you were 20?
9 times.
3 x Shanghai
3 x Hampshire
3 x London
I think so much upheaval in my formative years has meant that I cannot stay in one place for too long. I love moving, and staying in one place frightens the bejesus out of me. I know for most people it is the opposite. But having the same view, same routine and the same floorplan for the rest of your life, how is that not terrifying?

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Dress by FINERY.

What fictional character that you haven’t played do you relate to the most?
Ariel from The Little Mermaid. The Disney version of course, not the Hans Christian Andersen one where she loses the guy and turns into sea foam. We couldn’t afford videotapes when I was growing up, so on the rare occasions I was treated to a Blockbusters, I would always rent out the same film. I got that her father was king of their world and that he wanted her to be a certain way. But she knew there was something more to life. She wanted something different, and so did I. My parents’ focus was on academia. Mine was not. After I graduated university in a very academic field, I broke away, grew legs, and became an actress. No sea foam in sight, as yet.

You’ve appeared in films produced out of Malaysia, Bollywood, and the UK. Does any one particular category of film-goers recognize you more than others?
I haven’t been to Malaysia since that film was released in 2011 so I would not know how the reception would be if I went back. I definitely do not get recognised for it here, I don’t think British audiences are that familiar with Malaysian blockbusters…! I get recognised the most in the UK, for the work I do here. And that is the best. To be in my own country, working on homegrown shows with actors I admire, to tell the stories of normal everyday people around me, and then to be recognised for it, is one of the greatest things about my job.

If you could commission any remake or adaptation what would you pick? Who would you play?
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. I would play Estella. It is my favourite book. When I was reading it, I would ration myself to pages per day as I approached the end. I loved every character in it. I thought Estella was fascinating, and also her relationship with Miss Havisham and Pip. To be brought up with the sole purpose in life of breaking another’s heart – Freud would have a field day.

What’s the best way that you turn a bad day into a good one?
I take my dog for a walk. I absolutely think dogs are the best form of therapy. I can easily stress myself out and disappear into my rain cloud as I lose myself in my self-centred dramas. Then I remember I have a dog and he likes to be outside. So I take him for a quick walk to appease him, and we just end up being out for hours. Once the initial ‘inconvenience’ of tearing myself away from my laptop as subsided, it is like a cloud lifts and I become a different person. Nature, fresh air and animals are all very healing. There is something special about my dog too. He makes everyone smile. And that in turn, makes me smile even more.

Have you ever walked out of a film? If so, what was it?
No, but I have been very tempted to on one student project I did when I was first starting out. At that time, I was working full time in the City, giving up all my spare time for the shoot and not being paid for it. What’s more, the director was not only unprofessional, but completely clueless. In the end, the film was so bad they never submitted it for their graduation. But I am glad I had those experiences at the beginning. It really makes me appreciate everything I have now. Today, if I am being paid to work, fed, and led by a director who even knows where he is, then to me, it is a wonderful day at the office.

One of your recent performances is in the detective series Scott & Bailey, if you could spend a year trying to learn about or solve any mystery, what would you pick?
9/11

Want more? Watch our behind-the-scenes film.

Jing can be seen now in Scott & Bailey on ITV (UK).

As told to Paul Vaughan for TPJ
Creative Director & Photographer: Jessie Craig
Stylist: Francesca Turner
Hair: Leigh Keates using John Frieda
Makeup: Carolyn Gallyer using YSL Beauty

Michael Xavier

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Shirt by PAUL SMITH.

If you could watch the first ever performance of any play, which would you pick?
Macbeth in 1605. I love the play and would love to have seen the first audience reaction to it.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever seen going on in an audience while performing?
A lady tonight having the audacity to film me whilst I was half naked on a huge tablet device. Once I covered up, the filming stopped!

As a child, what do you remember wanting to be when you ‘grew up’?
At first I wanted to be an actor, then a policeman, then an astronaut, then an actor again.

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Shirt & blazer by PAUL SMITH.

If you had the option, which of these three Billy Wilder films would you want to adapt next (and what character would you play): Some Like It Hot, Sabrina, or Double Indemnity?
It’s got to be Some Like It Hot! One of the greatest comedies of all time and I’d love to play either part!

Does any song from your career stick out as the most difficult to learn/perform? 
Sunset Boulevard. It’s in 5/8 which means it’s hard to count, it’s got very similar words to the chorus (“Sunset Boulevard …blank… Boulevard”) and I’m currently having to climb out of a swimming pool, dry myself with a towel, put on a dressing gown, take off my wet trunks, pour myself a drink and put on a pair of shades all whilst singing the number. The second hardest is ‘The Pasta Song’ from Love Story (literally cooking a pasta dish whilst singing it with Emma Williams). Third hardest: ‘Hello Little Girl’ from Into The Woods. Singing it (Sondheim crunchy accompaniment) whilst doing pull ups!

If you had to pick one television show to watch for a week straight what would you pick?
Breaking Bad. Best TV series ever made!

Who do you think would have had a more entertaining Twitter account: Oscar Wilde or Truman Capote?
Oscar Wilde for sure. His sense of humour was just brilliant!!

What was your first non-acting job?
I had a Sunday paper round as a kid. Getting up in the freezing winter to cycle around Liverpool on my bike was both grounding and character-building. I can still feel the cold of my handlebars!

If you could know everything about a certain historical event what would you pick?
I’d love to have been there the first time someone discovered how to light a fire!

Would you rather be able to breath underwater or speak another language?
Breathe underwater of course! I could learn a language. Can’t learn how to be super-human!

Sunset Boulevard was remarked at the time to be a depiction of “Hollywood at its worst, told by Hollywood at its best”. Do you have any other favourite films about films/filmmakers or plays about plays?
Not sure it counts as it’s about a composer but I LOVE Amadeus (both the play and the film)!

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Jumper by PAUL SMITH.

What in hindsight is the most unnecessary or foolhardy thing you’ve ever done trying to research a role?
Trying to work out the family trees of the York’s and Lancaster’s for the Wars Of The Roses trilogy. Nigh on impossible to understand!

What would be the title of your autobiography?
Steaming, Diets and Silence – An Actor’s Monastic Lifestyle

Now that you’re about to wrap up Sunset Boulevard, what specific idea or preconception of the film and/or the characters was most challenged or altered the consequent to your run in the play?
I always thought Joe was a bit of a villain in the story but actually he’s just a victim of circumstance, just like Norma, Betty and somewhat Max.

Want more? Watch our behind-the-scenes film.

Michael Xavier can be seen in Sunset Boulevard at the Coliseum, London until May 7.

As told to Paul Vaughan for TPJ
Creative Director & Photographer: Jessie Craig
Stylist: Francesca Turner
Grooming: Leigh Keates using John Frieda & Carolyn Gallyer using YSL Beauty

Sarah Winter

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Dress by ROKSANDA.

Do you think it would be easier to play someone you met/know or someone historically well-known but where there is very little information available about their personal life?
Playing someone historical definitely gives you a bit more freedom to play and invent the details of their personal life, though I think you have a responsibility to not go too overboard. I would love to play someone I know too as I love emulating voices and accents, but I would need that person’s permission to fail!

What was the most interesting aspect of filming in Versailles in Versailles?
Seeing George Blagden stride across the famous black and white tiles outside the palace of Versailles dressed as Louis 14th and knowing that Louis himself once did the same, you got an idea of the magic and power the King would have commanded by having such a ridiculously grand backdrop.

What was the most surprising thing you learned about the people/time period in which the show is set?
It was a pretty crazy period in history so there was a lot that surprised me. I found it fascinating that Louis 14th invented this really elaborate system of “etiquette” – being seen doing the right thing in the right place at the right time, and wearing exactly the right thing in court. He made it so that red-heeled shoes could only be worn by nobility – it was a status symbol to have red on your shoes long before we had Louboutin’s!

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Top by ROKIT. Trousers by SANDRO.

Favourite villain of all time?
It’s a tie between Anthony Hopkins in Hannibal and Jennifer Jason Leigh as Hedra in Single White Female – both so disturbing in really messed up ways. I like my villains to have a really good psychological back story. When I was a kid I thought Ursula in The Little Mermaid was the ultimate villain.

Add, message or block – Errol Flynn, Humphrey Bogart, Marlon Brando?
I would add Humphrey Bogart so I could see all his selfies with Lauren Bacall. Message Marlon Brando to ask him who he thinks stole his Oscar for On The Waterfront (it went missing then later turned up at an auction house in London!). And I would block Errol Flynn – I would rather admire him from afar!

Sing with Billy Joel or dance with Fred Astaire?
Definitely dance with Fred Astaire. Can you imagine tap dancing in an empty diner or spinning round a studio lot with him? I love it in old movies where suddenly there’s music and rain and lights and everything just pauses so they can dance. Can Billy Joel accompany us? That would be perfect!

What contemporary actor would you pick to play you in a biopic of your own life?
Brie Larson. I loved her performance in Short Term 12, and she was so stunning and fearless in Room. The scene where Jacob Tremblay’s ‘Jack’ finds her in the bathroom had me sobbing for about half an hour. Or maybe Ruth Wilson. They’re both just so present and emotionally honest on screen.

What cinematic performance made the biggest impression on you growing up?
I fell in love with old movies when I was really young. We would watch them on Sunday afternoon with the curtains drawn so it felt like a home cinema. I didn’t see Audrey Hepburn’s performance in Funny Face until I was a bit older, but it totally had me spellbound – she was so intelligent, graceful and full of life, and I loved the crazy dance she does all in black in her flats. I used to dance like that around the house.

Is there any project you passed on that you wish you had pursued?
I was offered a role on this really edgy short film with some of Rankin’s team but I had to turn it down as I was going to Budapest to do an American TV pilot. I was gutted as it was really different from anything I had done before. I also had to turn down a play recently which really appealed to my inner geek.

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Shirt dress by FINERY.

If you could be the pet of anyone in history who would you pick?
I’d be Holly Golightly/Audrey Hepburn’s cat in Breakfast in Tiffany’s – “poor slob without a name”! He seems to have it pretty good – going to parties, getting to ride in taxis, sharing the sink with Audrey Hepburn… She might leave him in the rain, but she goes back for him and he gets wrapped up in her mac and kissed.

What’s the first song you knew all the words to?
I used to make up the words to a lot of songs so the first song I remember knowing all the actual words to was Queen‘s Bohemian Rhapsody. My parents used to have a Queen CD so we’d all sing along in the car. I actually started a rendition of it one night on set of Versailles and everyone joined in.

If you had to be a busker what would you do/perform?
I would tap dance on a little wooden board outside in Montmartre in Paris. I’ve seen a guy doing just that and it seemed like a pretty lovely way to busk – overlooking the whole of the city.

Versailles was allegedly referred to by some as a ‘gilded cage’. If you had to pick one place to spend the next 10 years of your life where would you pick?
If I could choose a city, I’d choose New York. The energy there is infectious and you really feel like anything is possible. If I had to pick one place I’d choose Shakespeare And Company in Paris – the bookstore on the banks of the Seine. You could read as much as you wanted, they have a cat, a piano and beds tucked into the bookshelves – what more could you want?

Would you rather give advice/talk to yourself four years ago (2012), or take advice from your future self four years in the future? (2020)
I’d definitely rather get advice from my future self – because there’s so much I’d like to go back and tell myself so there must be loads I think my future self would like to say. Although she might just tell me to chill, relax and do more yoga.

Want more? Watch our behind-the-scenes film.

Sarah Winter can be seen soon in Versailles on BBC Two (UK).

As told to Paul Vaughan for TPJ
Creative Director & Photographer: Jessie Craig
Stylist: Francesca Turner
Hair: Leigh Keates using John Frieda
Makeup: Carolyn Gallyer using YSL Beauty

Letter From The Editor

 

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As a photographer I have been incredibly blessed with my career so far. Watching the Oscars this year, of the 20 actor & actress nominees I realized I had shot 5 of them. I’ve worked with some wonderful publications as well as organizations such as BAFTA. For a girl who grew up in Ontario, Canada loving film and photography, it’s more than I ever could have hoped for.

Some of my favorite shoots over the years have been working with talent on the rise. Before Star Wars, I shot John Boyega by his mom’s house in South London, hanging out in front of his old drama school. Before 50 Shades of Grey, Jamie Dornan and I spent an afternoon by the canal debating how a duck’s foot stays warm in the water. Before Ex Machina, Domhnall Gleeson told me about the weirdest job he’d ever had which is still one of the best stories I’ve ever heard (it involves wealthy Russians, a castle and a fake haunting).

Equally precious to me have been the surreal moments of working with talents I have long respected from afar. I’ll never forget walking down the streets of Sicily with Willem Dafoe chatting about ice fishing, Judi Dench telling me in her dressing room about how she goes for pedicures with Maggie Smith, or realizing that there was absolutely nothing interesting I could small talk about with Oprah because she’s Oprah and has heard it all.

I decided recently it was time to start a new project – The Picture Journal – to bring talent together from the arts with a focus on film, television and theatre. Some of the individuals features you may have heard of already and some you may not have, but they are all passionate about what they do and I’m excited to share them with you on this new platform.

Jessie Craig