For those who may not be familiar with you work, can you tell me about yourself and some of your career highlights?
My first role was as Wicket the Ewok in Star Wars the Return of the Jedi when I was just 11 years old. When I was 18, I was cast in the title role of another Lucasfilm production, ‘Willow’. Since then I have appeared in all eight Harry Potter films, six Leprechaun films, two different versions of the Chronicles of Narnia (BBC TV series and a Disney movie), I played Marvin the Paranoid Android in the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy amongst other things. I recently played an exaggerated version of myself in Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant’s Life’s Too Short, travelled the world with Karl Pilkington for An Idiot Abroad 3 and played the Emperor of the universe in Dr Who.
You are about to embark on a UK tour with your new show See How They Run. Can you tell me what the show is about and what people can expect if they come to see it.
See How They Run is such a brilliantly written play, a fantastic example of a farce, written by Philip King. It was first performed in the 1945 and really sums up Britain at the time. It’s a very funny script, with lots of mistaken identity and big characters. Our cast is made up of entirely of short actors who have an average height of 4ft 2. I’ve reduced the scale of the set to suit making it a unique and immersive experience, so much so, you’ll soon forget your watching a cast of short actors.
The show is being put on by your Reduced Height Theatre Company. Tell me about the company and why you decided to start it.
The Reduce Height Theatre Company has been a dream of mine for many years. I love going to the theatre, and seeing classic plays. I’ve always wanted to appear in them, but never had the opportunity to. I thought the only way this was going to happen was if I produced the play myself. There is such a diverse range of untapped acting talent that exists among the short actor community too. I wanted to give those performers a platform to really show what they can do and to celebrate them as actors. this was the perfect venture to show that.
If I asked your friends to describe you in three words, what would they be?
Hardworking, charming and short.
Do you have a favourite Musical Theatre show or song that means a lot to you?
Spamalot. It was an absolute pleasure to be asked to be Patsy in the show. It had long been one of my favourite shows and my whole family are big Monty Python fans. Getting to sing ‘Always Look on the Brights Side of Life’ with Eric Idol in the audience is a career highlight for me.
What has been the funniest or most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you on stage?
I was on stage at MK theatre about to go on as Elvis. I had a quick change into one of those famous Elvis jumpsuits. Cutting it very fine, I pulled the long zip that runs up the front of the costume as I was about to make my entrance but the zip got stuck and then broke. Safety pins were quickly used to try and preserve my dignity but the audience certainly got more than they bargained for that night!
Which of the stops on your UK tour are you most looking forward to? Does anywhere hold a special meaning to you?
Richmond is such a fantastic theatre, exactly how you imagine going to the theatre should be. I was in panto in Manchester a few years ago, so I’m looking forward to going back there. We have already played The Palace in Southend – it’s a lovely old theatre with it’s own ghost!
Thanks for having Tea With Wilma
For tour dates and to book tickets click here