Admittedly I knew nothing about The Outcast book before filming, but in being directly on set, I found out that it's not exactly the happiest of affairs. The story details one young man's attempts to deal with his feelings in a time where the expression of them was almost a taboo - especially if you were a man. But of course, with all things being kept wound too tight or grasped too hard, the eventuality and burden of secrets and lies is that they will always subtly slip through the cracks or just outright explode. In the case of The Outcast, peace must be made with the past...the only question being; will this lead to relief and enlightenment or panoramic destruction?
My scenes consisted of an indoor, night club scene where I was supposed to be doing some Jazz dancing, but I somehow ended up doing more acting (I use the term loosely) than jumping up and spinning around. It never gets boring to see a number of people having to dance to music that isn't playing and watching some of the extras really give it their all to no sound. Some times the want to burst into laughter was hard to contain, but simultaneously it was exhausting just to watch and very tiring for the dancers who had to repeat the scene multiple times.
After the dancing scene where the main characters interacted with each other, came the cameo from Zara McFarlene and all I can say is I completely understand why people will want to give this songstress awards. Her truly beautiful voice captured everyone on set and nobody had to act in response to her singing believe me.
Director Iain Softley has a very calm approach to shooting, after 44 days of principal photography a lot of directors might be short and snappy, but even in asking him a query that should have been directed at the Third Assistant Director, he politely pointed me in his direction. In fact the entire crew were a really nice bunch, serious in the pursuit to finish the production on time, but still human in dealing with each other.
Sadie Jones and her daughter were also on set, Sadie actually adapted the book for television and both her daughter and she are in the production, to what degree I can't say.
The next day, the following scenes were shot at night in Soho, where we were to simulate the hustle and bustle of arriving at the night club, this scene was a lot of fun to shoot, mostly in what was happening between takes. Watching how the general public react to a film set is eye opening. Myself and a lot of people were just extras, but being in costume and in front of cameras people wanted photos, conversation - allsorts. Maybe I need to stop writing about movies and really get involved.
The Outcast will be broadcast by the BBC is 2015.