Next week, the Williams brothers’ new six-part anthology thriller, The Missing, kicks into gear again. This time, we have David Morrissey and Keeley Hawes as the parents who go through unimaginable struggles. We managed to get hold of an interview with the brilliant Keeley Hawes (who has, in the past five years, really cemented her reputation as one of the country’s best), which you can read after the jumperoonie.
The Killing Times: What made you want to sign up to The Missing?
Keeley Hawes: I was sent the first six scripts and I sat down one evening and thought, oh I’ll take a look at the first one – and by the end of the evening I had read them all, like I was making my way through a box set. I just couldn’t stop. So I was very excited.
TKT: What is it about Harry and Jack’s writing that appeals to you?
KH: I think Harry and Jack are extraordinary. The writing is just wonderful; my heart was racing. They’re incredibly clever because the stories are character-driven as well. It’s not just the twists and turns, they really care about these people. I love their work and I love speaking their dialogue, it’s terrific.
TKT: Where do we start with this series of The Missing?
KH: The scene is set in Germany with a military family. And we find out Gemma and Sam had a daughter who went missing. They’ve had to move on partly because they have a son and partly because they just had to get on with their lives. Then they get the call to say their daughter might have been found. I’ve read about people who’ve experienced it and every day you must wake up and think ‘is today the day?’ And in our story, today’s the day. But it’s also a case of ‘be careful what you wish for’: after so much time, it’s not going to be the same.
TKT: How do things change?
KH: The family dynamic has changed and it’s one of the saddest things. Of course it’s inevitable, but this family has already been torn apart once, and they get smashed apart again.
TKT: How does Gemma differ between the two timelines?
KH: It’s like playing two different characters. Physically, we all look very different in the two different timelines. For the present day, my hair is mostly gone and there’s sort of dark circles and that sort of thing, but it’s more of a physical thing. I mean, she’s somebody who has been completely shattered, wounded by everything that life’s thrown at her… there’s a kind of physical paring down.
TKT: How has it been working with the other cast?
KH: I worked with David Morrissey years and years ago. He’s obviously terrific and a wonderful actor. With Laura Fraser, I’m a bit of a fan and have a bit of a girl crush on her. I was beside myself when I knew that we’d be working together. Tchéky Karyo is a legend. He’s got so much charisma coming out of everywhere. He’s lovely to work with and very funny. Working with Abigail Hardingham is so easy, because she is just a huge talent. She has taken the whole thing in her stride. It’s not an easy part to play, but she’s just made it look like the easiest thing in the world. I’m very fond of Abigail.
The Missing: Wednesday 12th October, 9pm, BBC1
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