About Time and Skins actor Will Merrick back in Cheltenham for new play
HE is currently on the silver screen in the new Richard Curtis film About Time, and now Will Merrick is back in Cheltenham, preparing to star on the stage.
He told the Echo about working with the director behind Love Actually and his new play Boys.
IT all started at Dean Close in Lansdown for Will, as he took his first tentative acting steps treading the boards in school plays.
His talent was quickly recognised and he landed a part as Alo Creevey in the Channel 4 series Skins.
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And now the 20-year-old is a star of the big screen, playing Jay alongside Hollywood favourite Rachel McAdams in the romantic comedy About Time, which is in cinemas now.
But theatre is his first love and, after just finishing a highly successful month performing Boys to sold-out audiences in Edinburgh at the Fringe Festival, he has returned to Cheltenham to perform the play at Bishop's Cleeve Tithe Barn tomorrow and Friday.
Speaking to the Echo during rehearsals at the Bacon Theatre at Dean Close, he said: "Where I started was in the Bacon and we did loads of stuff here in the studio, which was the most fun, really.
"Moving to Skins I felt it quite difficult to adapt at first, because all I had done was theatre, and screen acting is very different."
But he soon won plaudits in the Bafta-winning show, and managed to catch the eye of Richard Curtis.
Ledbury-born Will said: "I went from being terrified in Skins to being terrified in the film, really. I learnt a lot from the other actors and working with Richard was great.
"With Richard, his experience just emanates from him and he fills you with confidence on set. He's just so relaxed."
Will is joined by fellow members of the No Prophet Theatre Company – Wesley Lyneham, Alex Carden, Olivia Duffin, Patrick Fleming and Lydia Maxwell – in Boys.
It's a tale of four students living in a student flat in Edinburgh, and Will said: "The whole play is very relevant to us personally as actors."
Currently travelling between London and Cheltenham, Will starts working at the Royal Shakespeare Company later this year, as he continues to shape his acting career.
For more details on Boys and No Prophet Theatre Company, search Facebook.