John Burdett told us about his acting challenges in the past and about his appearances in TV, Film and theatre.

Diversity of roles

BN: Josh, could you tell us about the beginning of your acting journey?

Josh: I think I first realised that I wanted to become an actor at the age of 14 when I landed one of the leads in the school production of Jack and Beanstalk. From then on I was hooked and would audition for every play, eventually being to enjoy some really good and quite diverse roles such as Lysander in A Midsummer Night's Dream and Bill Sykes in Oliver! I would be putting the plays well before school work on my list of priorities, but at the time I knew I was more committed to acting.

Advertisements
Advertisements

The crazy thing is I should have gone to drama school after I left school but ended up on the more "conventional" path. So even though I did some theatre at university, I didn't pursue my acting career until years later.

Training at the Stella Adler Studio

BN: How come you decided to start training at the #Stella Adler Studio and what was the outcome?

Josh: When I finally decided to follow the dream and begin my career as an actor, I had been living in London a long time and working in an office job there, randomly (!), in the yacht broking industry. It was a big decision to quit a career that going well and start quite late in acting. I needed a change so I decided to move to LA and train there. I already knew LA and had friends there and I had always liked it as a city. They have a wonderful approach to acting there in that even the busiest working actors still train, and there are some amazing schools and coaches.

Advertisements

I chose Stella Adler as a great place to start learning the technique of acting and trained under Ron Burrus, a student under Stella Adler herself! It was an incredible experience and just ignited my passion for this career. I felt ready to really get started in this industry.

BN: Which roles were the most interesting to play and why?

Josh: It's great when you can get a part to really get your teeth into and create a character. I recently did a play (An Insomniac's Guide To Ambulances by Rachel Creeger) in which I got to play two great roles but totally different - one as a therapist who also interacts with the audience and creates a sort of group therapy session, and another an ex-soldier suffering from acute PTSD. I played another soldier in the upcoming film Loving Vincent (directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman), this time using a Scottish accent. As well as the role itself, it's so interesting being on a bigger budget film set and observing all the other cast and crew doing what they do to make it all work.

Advertisements

Acting alongside Douglas Booth

BN: What do you feel about acting alongside Douglas Booth in an upcoming feature Loving Vincent?

Josh: It was great acting alongside Douglas. He was great to work with and such a nice guy. It was funny as on my first day of filming we met and it was all friendly, then about 20 minutes later were already rehearsing a fight scene and grabbing each other by the throat! We did some additional ADR for the film several months after the main shoot so it was good to catch up then too. I'm really looking forward to seeing him as the lead in the film when it comes out later this year!

BN: Which are your best acting projects to date and where are we able to see them?

Josh: The one I am most excited about right now is my role as Zouave in Loving Vincent. It's going to be a really exciting film for both the story of Vincent van Gogh and the groundbreaking way in which the film was shot and edited. An army of incredibly skilled artists painted over every frame of the entire film to create a style of a moving painting in the style of van Gogh. It's going to look amazing! Aside from that I recently had a recurring role as a news reporter in the Lionsgate TV seriesJ Guilt, starring Billy Zane and Daisy Head. I'm in rehearsals now playing the lead in a play adapted from the book Pretty Broken Punks by Martin Belk. It's early days, but one to look out for!