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ACTING

 

From Stage to Screen

British stage actor Edward Hogg is making the move to the big screen and, after a baptism of fire with White Lightnin’, he gives an honest account of being a newcomer in the world of film.

At just 30 years old, Sheffield born Edward Hogg is making a rather dramatic impact on the world of British film. His no-holds-barred performance as real-life Appalachian mountain dancer Jesco White, whose battles with personal demons are laid bare in Dominic Murphy’s brutal White Lightnin’, has won him not just high praise on the festival circuit but also the Best Actor Award at this year’s Monterrey International Film Festival. But despite all the critical acclaim being heaped upon him for both this role and his upcoming British comedy Bunny and the Bull, Hogg admits he’s still definitely a novice when it comes to acting for the big screen.

“I was so green in terms of filming,” he admits of his experience on the White Lightnin’ set. “It was Dominic [Murphy, the film’s director] who led me through it, because I didn’t really know how to get into a character. I come from a theatrical background and Dominic is much more method so he was able to give me a lot of help. We had a long period before we started filming, and we had come to an agreement about how I was going to play [Jesco] and how the film was going to be. We did a lot of research, me and Dominic, together. There’s a lot of stuff on YouTube about Jesco and I was also fortunate to be able to meet him and spend some time with him.”

Indeed, a major part of Hogg’s preparation was learning both Jesco’s southern drawl and his unique dancing style. “It’s always nice to learn new things,” the actor smiles. “That’s one of the most exciting things, when you have to learn something to be a character. And obviously, because you’ve learnt something new, it does give you something else. Dominic tried to get me to speak in the accent all the time, but I thought that would be a bit embarrassing! [In fact] Dominic was helping me the  whole time because I didn’t know what to do! When you have to get yourself emotionally hyped up, and you have to run up and down and shout a bit, I would have been scared to death to do that, I would have felt like an idiot. But he gave me permission to do that—he kind of forced me! So that felt great. And he would literally, at times, tell me where to put my head because he said, ‘If you put your head in that position, you look like a movie star, if you put your head in that position, you look like Ed Hogg from Sheffield!’”

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