TheOneRing.net – Interview by Greendragon
Interviewed by GreenDragon for TheOneRing.net (14.04.2014) about his role as Thorin Oakenshield in Sir Peter Jacksons record breaking production “The Hobbit”, Richard Armitage mentions King Richard III again.
As glad as I am that even for Tolkien fans King Richard III is worth a question, I must admit, I wonder if the late battles around King Richard III brought this change and caused this very distancing statement about Mr. Armitage’s interest in telling the (hi)story of King Richard III.
GreenDragon: One last thing I’m interested to ask you about – I keep reading about your fascination with Richard III, and that you have interest in making a film about him. I just wondered what truth there is in any of that?
It was an idea that I had a while back. But my interest in it is really a hobby, of reading biographies, and I was once working with a script writer on something. I don’t know whether a documentary would be of interest… it’s difficult, finding something which is going to be commercially interesting, and for an audience – I don’t know how many people would be that excited about him… My interest in him doesn’t necessarily have to manifest itself in a piece of work. Even if it’s me going back on stage and playing him; it’s purely a hobby for me.
GreenDragon: It’s a fascinating topic – particularly when you consider how Shakespeare has painted him into one particular corner…
Yeah, I mean Shakespeare really created a bit of a pantomime and put him at the centre of it. It’s a brilliant thriller, but I don’t know how biased Shakespeare was… Well, I do know how biased he was, because he was writing for a Tudor monarch! But I think there’s a tale to tell. I think the BBC maybe are investigating doing a project about Richard, but we’ll see. I think there’s always room for a new take on it; and there’s plenty of literature out there. The Daughter of Time [Josephine Tey] is such an interesting book, and that would be worth exploring.
Richard Armitage is currently filming in Leeds, U.K., and was interviewed by Geeta Pendse from BBC East Midlands Today (02.04.2014), where he once again mentioned his connection to and interest in King Richard III.
The video of the interview is available on Facebook (no Facebook account necessary to watch the interview).
Perhaps, I should not introduce the interview so neutrally here.
After all, Mr. Armitage is announced in the comment to the video on Facebook as:
“Gorgeous Hollywood hearthrob“.
The transcript of the interview part about King Richard III follows here:
BBC East Midlands Today – Interview with actor Richard Armitage by Geeta Pendse
Geeta Pendse: Obviously, your name is Richard, and there is someone very famous that is called Richard, … who was recently discovered in Leicester.
Richard Madeley, I know, that is amazing, isn’t it?
[British readers perhaps will be able to verify the name of the celebrity, Mr. Armitage mentions here in his comment. I just guessed and googled…]
Geeta Pendse: Also Richard III. Are you named after Richard III?
I was born on the 22nd of August and that was when he died on the battlefield at Bosworth. That is one of those history questions that I always got right. But my dad was really into Richard III, so he chose that name. I think if I hadn’t been born on the 22nd of August, I might have been called Russell.
Geeta Pendse: Do you know, I am born on the 22nd of August and I am not called Richard.
And you are not called Richard.
Geeta Pendse: What happened? Maybe it was this whole girl thing.
I don’t know. We could think of another name for you. – Elizabeth.
Geeta Pendse: Yeah. And were you aware of this whole story unraveling in Leicester?
I was in New Zealand at the time, so I was receiving the news sort of sporadically. But yeah. I am kind of fascinated and thrilled that they found him and have laid him to rest or whether that’s still up in the air as to where he is going to be laid to rest. But yeah. I still haven’t had chance to visit the site yet, but I will.
Geeta Pendse: And do you ever visit Leicester?
I do, especially, I am working in the U.K. at the moment, I am working up in Leeds. I have visited Leicester quite a few times, but mainly to the country side. I haven’t been into the city center for a while.
Geeta Pendse: So, if I could bring you one thing from Leicestershire […]
Pork pie and a piece of Stilton.
Geeta Pendse: You are on. We will do that.
I must admit, a man who loves cheese has won my sympathies forever. I am currently on a discovery tour to all the varieties of English cheese, so the end of the following interview was an especial highlight for me.
But now follows my first embedding of a Facebook post. So I hope it works…