Since the very first moment you see him on the screen, it’s striking clear that Bart Edwards is a great actor, a fun personality and, most importantly, he has charisma for days. We knew that but, through his words, we discovered that he’s all that and so much, much more: he’s talented and committed to acting, to art, to a work that makes him deeply happy.
He’s the intriguing Jasper in “UnReal“, the award-nominated drama series that reveals the backstage of reality shows and that has recently started its third season, seeing Bart playing alongside Constance Zimmer and Shiri Appleby. He promises “a lot of ego flying around” about the new season and we definitely believe him: so, brace yourselves and don’t say Bart didn’t warn you (and as Jasper, the Wall Street Investment Banker, we can’t but nod at everything he says).
Bart, however, is already well known in the U.K. for Channel 4’s “Peep Show” and, in 2008, for his role on BBC’s “EastEnders”, where he portrayed Lucy’s boyfriend Olly Greenwood.
Bart Edwards likes to travel, as became clear with “Lykkeland“, the mini-series where he played Jonathan Key and for which he traveled to Norway, and loves theatre.
He won us over when he confessed that his favorite accent is Italian (obviously), and we’re positive that, by the end of this chat with this talented British actor, you’ll love him too!
What made you want to become an actor?
I was a huge comedy fan as a child and used to binge watch a lot of the classic stuff. Peter Cook and Dudely Moore, Monty Python, Blackadder and Faulty Towers. So much so I’d learn it off by heart. I remember learning a particular favorite sketch by Cook and Moore ‘Dirty Uncle Birty’ with my mate Craig and performing that to friends. Also, anything I could get my hands on by Eddie Izzard. His comedy blew my mind. Eddie Izzard and Peter Cook had a huge influence on me growing up.
And what do you bring on set from your theatre background?
I’m a big fan of theatre and did a lot throughout my childhood. What I always loved, other than just the pure excitement of going on stage every night, was the family that formed during the process. TV is notoriously fast passed and understandably sometimes there’s just not the time for that to happen to the same extent. However, that wasn’t the case with UnREAL. It did feel like a family. It was a joy to go to work every day. I met some glorious people.
UnREAL season 3 is coming up soon, what should we expect?
Expect everything. Season 3 kicks off with ‘Everlastings’ future on the line so tensions are running high. There’s a hell of a lot of ego flying around.
And how do you think shows like the one depicted in UnREAL are shaping the screen nowadays?
I find reality show’s fascinating. How over time the shows are sort of becoming parodies of themselves. It was a lot of fun watching a bunch of them before we started shooting UnREAL.
How does it feel to work in productions in different countries?
I’ve always been a huge fan of traveling and being able to do it for work is an absolute blessing.
On your other upcoming project Lykkeland, how was being part of such production?
Norway is a beautiful country and being able to film there for 8 months was wonderful. Lykkeland (State of Happiness) is such an incredible story from Norwegian and particularly Stavanger’s history but also for the world. The night before Christmas 1969, they find the largest subsea oil basin in history. A single moment that changes everything.
In what way did you prepare for your role?
For UnREAL, I binge watched reality TV. It’s so interesting to see the difference between how people choose to conduct themselves when they think they are and then aren’t being filmed. I really wanted Jasper to have that flip side to him.
For Lykkeland I play a Texan lawyer called Jonathan Kay. So I spent a good deal of time with a voice coach before shooting so that I felt comfortable to play around when we got on set. We also had 60/70s music playing on old jukeboxes dotted around the set a lot of the time. So that really helped to keep us all in the mood.
Must have on set: Reusable water bottle
Superpower: This is a power I’ve had since being a child. It’s wonderfully pointless. I can mimic anyone’s face but only for a second. And then it’s gone
Epic fail on the job: Fell asleep while working in a shop when I was younger. My boss found me curled up behind the counter.
Happy place: Summer time in London.
Favorite accent: Italian (obviously)
Movie then and now:
Then: Life of Brian/ Shaun of the dead /Back To The Future 1 2 and 3
Now: This is hard because it’s always changing but something I watched recently was Captain Fantastic with Viggo Mortensen. I thought it was brilliant.
Favorite Word: Kumquat
Favorite Emoji: I love all my emojis equally.
Italian movie: The Consequences of Love
Favorite quote: “Never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time”. – Mr. Micawber from David Copperfield.
The last series you binge-watched: The End of the F***ing World on Netflix. I thought Jessica Barden and Alex Lawther were superb. Oh and Westworld, it’s so damn good!!
What have you already crossed from your Bucket List: I climbed Preikestolen whilst I was in Norway. It’s breathtaking. If you’re ever in Stavanger make sure you go do it.
I Dreamed a Dream… To play Philip Marlowe from the books of Raymond Chandler. I think that may still be me trying to fulfill my urge to be a private detective as a child. I also think they should bring Quantum Leap back I think it would be awesome!
The most beautiful thing while filming… UnREAL?: The people. I met some absolute keepers on the job.
Ops! Break Time:
I love a nap.
Your Snack Crush? Almond Butter
Sweets or Popcorn? Popcorn
Since we are Italian… Hawaiian pizza, yay or nay? I’m Vegetarian so minus the bacon or ham. It may be sacrilege but sure I don’t mind a bit pineapple on a pizza.