Actor Charles Dance talked with us about his involvement in Father's
Day, our dark mini-drama about prostate cancer which also
starred Neil Stuke, Ray Winstone, Cyril Nri, John Simm, Stuart
Laing, and Tamzin Outhwaite.
Charles Dance: "I think the
film is great. Very cleverly written, right
up to the point when the men gather together you don't know if
you're watching a thriller, a gangster movie or something else.
It's beautifully shot, particularly in the time that we had
available. I'm extremely glad to be associated with it.
"I played the oldest character in the film - Don,
that could be 'the' Don in gangster parlance, the Godfather; but in
fact I'm a rather different sort of Godfather to this circle of
guys who are brought together by prostate cancer."
What was it like playing the oldest man, a sick
"Well, I don't really play heart throbs these days, and I'll
take any part that's well written and this was. In fact I very
often play villains these days, so the Don wasn't far out.
"I wanted to do the film because it's a very good cause. I know
two or three people, probably more, who have had prostate cancer.
We chaps have to know that as we get older the prostate can
become a problem. It's a funny little gland and for most of us
nothing much will happen, but men need to be aware of the
"I am, so I didn't learn anything particularly new from the
film. I am health conscious, an actor has to be. There's no sick
pay, it's up to us to look after our bodies, stay healthy and keep
working so I have regular check ups. I ride a bike, I swim, if I'm
going to have to take my shirt off in a film, increasingly rare,
thank goodness, then I pump some iron.
"My own father died when I was four. With my own children, I
will talk about health. I say your body is like your home, you need
to maintain it, look after it. I did recognise the reluctance of
the men in the film to talk about such issues, I think that's true.
While men tend to make more of a drama than women over everyday
illness, they tend not to open up as much about more difficult
matters. I have found that I, and friends of my own age, have begun
to open up more as we've got older. Young men will talk about sport
or news, nothing too personal."
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