OLD DOC GETTING UP TO NEW TRICKS
Former Doctor Who Christopher Eccleston is in Melbourne filming the penultimate episode of HBO drama The Leftovers.
So how did a high-end cable show from Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof previously set in upstate New York and Texas end up moving here?
“There was actually one of our on-set rumours swirling in the middle of season one that we would be going to Australia, so it’s always obviously been part of Damon Lindelof’s crazed masterplan that we would end up here,” explains Eccleston, who plays tormented reverend Matt.
The series deals with the aftermath of the disappearance of 2 per cent of the world’s population, and work on the finale starts within weeks.
“And, as ever, the pressure is on Damon Lindelof, who we know had a rough ride with the way he wrapped up Lost … so fortunately for us he’s battle hardened!”
Eccleston ( 28 Days Later, Thor: The Dark World) is also starring as a grandad in BBC First comedy drama, The A Word, about a family coping with the realisation their fiveyear-old boy, Joe, is autistic.
He says it’s “warm and contradictory, and awkward and funny, the way life is”.
Eccleston knows the impact a neurological disorder can have on a family.
“I watched my father suffer dementia for over 12 years and I had to learn some very tough lessons about how to communicate with him and (so I was interested) in certainly promoting awareness, not only of autism, but some of the issues that families experience and undergo,” he says.
Eccleston believes the series is really about communication problems.
“To a certain extent the boy’s autism is a Trojan horse and then we start meditating on how quote unquote “normal” people relate to each other ... (grandad) Maurice is particularly inept when it comes to dealing with other people’s feelings,” he says.
THE A WORD, BBC FIRST, SUNDAY, 8.30PM