Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Imogen Poots in a Bouquet of Barbed Wire

21 year old rising star Imogen Poots stars as Prue, alongside Trevor Eve in ITV's modern reworking of Andrea Newman’s taboo-busting 1970s psychological TV drama A Bouquet of Barbed Wire.

Newcomer Pierro Niel-Mee (represented by Piers Nimmo at Roger Carey Associates) plays Prue's younger brother David.

Bouquet of Barbed Wire explores the consequences of a father’s obsessive love for his daughter and how secrets once buried in the past return to haunt their lives.

Talking about her character in the upcoming ITV drama, Imogen says: “I play Prue Sorenson and at the beginning she is living quite an innocent existence, although there is the presence of her brooding and over-protective father, Peter Manson, in the background. When she becomes intimately involved with her school teacher a lot of things start to fall to pieces around her. It appears as if the flaws of everyone else transfer to her. She’s savvy, she’s intelligent and bold but at the same time she’s a young girl caught up in this ridiculously tragic situation and therefore bound to be vulnerable at times.

I think her Mother, Cassie, is actually pretty amazing in the way she deals with the situation, especially the moment Prue brings Gavin home and Cassie accepts the fact he’s older and her teacher. She also accepts how they met and then her pregnancy; she takes it in a very steady way, a very British way to be precise!”

Imogen explains the reasons why she was keen to take on the challenge of this iconic role.

It’s very difficult to shock an audience these days; we’ve become such a liberal society with art, literature and sexuality. The chance to play a part like Prue was very, very exciting because she’s so multi-faceted. Her character has an extra dimension and there’s a lot going on.

I’m 21 now but when I left home I was in a similar situation to Prue in the sense I was taking my first steps into the big wide world out alone. It meant cutting off some of the family ties I had in places. For me, that whole aspect of her character was so exciting. She’s not just a school girl who is ruined or broken; there are a lot of contributing factors. She’s making her own decisions and she’s breaking away from home and I think that’s always a very exciting time for anyone.”

The 1975 original definitely played a large part in our rehearsal process. It was so prominent and notorious at the time, but one thing we didn’t want to do was try and top that or try to replicate the controversy. Ashley, the director was very open to everybody trying something new and working together in order to breathe new life into the characters.

Tom Riley and I quickly passed the stage of being polite and cautious with each other, which allowed us to really enjoy bouncing off one another and challenge each other. He was such a great support and a dream to work with in that sense. We had fun with it.”

Imogen admits she and Tom, who plays Gavin Sorenson, have become firm friends as a result of filming Bouquet of Barbed Wire…

It’s very rare when you are filming with other actors to stay in touch as friends on a regular basis. Tom Riley is a friend and an incredible person. He was really a pleasure to be around at all times.

Despite the dark nature of some scenes, Imogen and Tom had a lot of fun filming on set.

We were quite thankful to have each other on set, especially because the subject did get so dark sometimes. We helped each other to disconnect from it.

It was snowing at one point during filming, and one of Tom’s favourite things to do was knock on my door and throw a snowball at me when I opened it. I have to admit it grew slightly boring after a while but he continued to do it, everyday, until the snow melted!”

Imogen is currently filming a remake of Fright Night alongside an all star cast including Colin Farrell, Toni Collette, David Tennant and Anton Yelchin.

Imogen explains: “We’re not far from Sante Fe in New Mexico, filming in a place called Albuquerque. If you can spell that you get 10 points! The director is Craig Gillespie, who previously did Lars and the Real Girl. The cast are incredible and it’s really exciting. I’m playing an all America girl so it’s completely different to anything I’ve ever done before. I’ve always wanted to try and do as many things as possible so I feel really lucky to get a variety of parts. I’m having a lot of fun!”

Imogen will also be starring in the up-coming BBC film Jane Eyre as Blanche Ingram. Her previous credits include: Solitary Man, Cracks, Me and Orson Welles, Miss Austen Regrets and 28 Weeks Later. 

The 3 x 60 min drama begins September 6 at 9pm on ITV1.

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