Pole position: "Poldarks" Aidan Turner on stage, screen - and horse (2023)

LONDON —Long before Irish actor Aidan Turner climbed into the saddle of Ross Poldark and galloped - inevitably - into trouble along the Cornish cliffs, Winston Graham's "Poldark" series of historical novels was a hit. among the British.

Many remember reading about the adventures of the rebellious British army officer and copper mine owner when the books were first published in the 1940s and 1950s, while an entire generation remembers the first BBC television adaptation in 1975. , starring English actor Robin Ellis.

Pole position: "Poldarks" Aidan Turner on stage, screen - and horse (1)

Turner, 34, the star of BBC One's latest series, which premiered in 2015, has taken Ross into new, sexier territory. Nearly 10 million people watched the first series, which begins in 1783, when Ross returns to England after the American Revolution. Booksellers regularly refer to the franchise as "Poldark and Handsome", noting Turner's bloodied and scarred face on paperback covers.

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Pole position: "Poldarks" Aidan Turner on stage, screen - and horse (2)

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Cornwall's tourist board is still dealing with crowds wanting to visit the English county's rugged coastline or take their dogs on "Poldark"-inspired walks.

Pole position: "Poldarks" Aidan Turner on stage, screen - and horse (4)

The series also turned Turner, whose best-known role until 2015 was Kili, a belligerent dwarf in the "Hobbit" movies, into the kind of TV heartthrob not seen since the days of Colin Firth as Mark Darcy in "Pride." and prejudice". ”

It also brought him a number of independent film projects, a play in London's West End and Turner's first brand campaign, featuringdunhill. Shot by Alasdair McLellan at the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich, London, the campaign ends on August 1 at British GQ.

GALLERY: See all the images ofdunhill'sCampaign with Aidan Turner >>

Here, Turner talks to WWD about those projects, his rocky relationship with Ross, and his new 18th-century home in East London, where, oddly enough, he's felt right at home.

World Water Day: Season 3 of “Poldark” has just wrapped in the UK and is scheduled to air on PBS Masterpiece in October. How do you feel about the role? Are you ready to move on?

Aidan Turner:It's a seven-month shoot, so it's packed and busy, so you don't have a lot of time to get bored or fidget. I guess when you're putting on a show too, to a certain degree, there's some kind of pressure and responsibility to take the lead and not let boredom set in. It happens in all jobs, it happened when I was on stage for years. After the premiere, or a few weeks later, you start to think that it is a thing of the past, that there is nothing new to discover. But it's just a matter of rediscovering the role, the experience and the project. I'm still having a lot of fun.

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WWD: How many more seasons do you have in you?

NO.:I think we ran out of things to do after 5th grade, I think it would be the last. Four got the green light, five hasn't yet, and it wouldn't be fair of me to give the green light, but it probably looks like it could happen.

WWD: Is playing Ross Poldark exhausting? He's so intense and complicated, and he thinks he can save the world. There is never any downtime with it.

NO.:It's certainly interesting to play and always surprises me. I got this weird email from Debbie [Horsfield, “Poldark” writer] saying, “I wrote the last scene for this, can you believe that's what she does?” But that's what I love about him. He is real, he is not just a benevolent saint or a benefactor, he tries to help where he can, he is a good person by nature, but he also has many flaws. He has an ego, although he doesn't think he does. He is not good at delegating work; he wants to take on all the responsibilities, which is a noble thing. He wants to be the man of the house, the guardian of the community, but at the same time he lets a lot of things slip and gets a lot of people into trouble. He is a complicated guy; I think sometimes he doesn't know where he is, which is interesting to play. He is a player by nature, and there is a lawlessness about him that is not always attractive, it is irresponsible and dangerous. Getting into the psychology of him is fascinating, and I still can't figure out this guy three years later. He is the gift that he keeps on giving.

Pole position: "Poldarks" Aidan Turner on stage, screen - and horse (6)

WWD: Do you have anything in common with Ross?

NO.:We both wear a very fine hat, a good tricorne. We wear a pair of tall boots like nobody else. Our beach gallop is on point. There's a lot of me in Ross. I guess it's the same with all actors. In the end, it all has to come from me, you can't rip it out of the ether. I think there's a lot of him in me, although I think I'm a bit more measured. I'd like to think I am, anyway.

WWD: Everyone knows that you learned to ride a horse in a matter of months. How hard was that, and are you still riding Seamus?

NO.:Seamus is my stable Irish horse. I've ridden a bit in New Zealand (for “The Hobbit”), but not a lot, and the producers are very concerned when they see actors on horseback. You can use stuntmen or doubles, and I have a stuntman, but it's really only used when I'm likely to kill myself by falling off the edge of a cliff. There's no feeling like that kind of pressure: I knew I had to be pretty decent real quick, and you know at nine o'clock in six months you want to look good, so it's like "fake it till you make it." "You're also a quick learner: you realize where your weight should be, why your heels should be down. It's like everything else. It's a trust game. If you absolutely throw yourself into it, you'll do well. Fear and Anxiety don't help much.It's about working at the craft, doing your homework and being safe, but sometimes you just need to throw yourself in the saddle.

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WWD: Can you talk about some of your other upcoming projects?

NO.:Next year I'm doing a play in the West End. I miss the stage. I trained in theater; I went to drama school and then did theater exclusively for about six years. It's my past; that's where i come from I've been away from him for a long time, so it's time.

At eight the curtain rises and that's it, you're out there with you, the public, the other players. There is no "take two" business. You are in. The good thing is also the rehearsals. When you're hopping on TV and movie sets, you don't get a chance to, generally speaking, do a lot of rehearsal. With the theater, you're locked in the room for four or five weeks with the guys figuring things out. It's back to play school.

That's what I miss the most, almost. There's nothing like opening night or having the curtain rise and the room fill up, but also having weeks and weeks to work with the director and cast members and try to figure out the play. It's optimal. “Titus Andronicus” was a piece that I really loved. It was in Dublin in 2005 at a place called Project Arts Centre. Selina Cartmell won Best Director and Best Play that year. She also had many close friends. Ruth Negga was in it, I played Demetrius and she played Lavinia.

WWD: What movies are you working on?

NO.:“Look Away” will be released soon. It's a fun little independent project. I filmed 18 months ago in New York with Ben Walker, Chloë Sevigny and Matthew Broderick. It has a very interesting script and a very strange story, a high concept kind of story. It's one of those projects that you do and don't hear anything for a long time and suddenly everything falls into place. Just buy the ticket and go.

“The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot” is an independent short film directed by Robert Kryzkowski and produced by John Sayles, who is a super producer. I read the script a few months ago and every once in a while something hits you, and that was it. I thought, "It's eccentric and weird, and it's a great character piece." I play a character named Calvin Barr, and the older version of my character is played by Sam Elliott, who has been one of my heroes for years, going back to "The Big Lebowski" and before. I get to go to Massachusetts and hang out with a really good team of people. It's going to be fun and it fits perfectly into my schedule. He's a very different character than anything I'm playing right now.

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I also did "Loving Vincent." Douglas Booth plays the lead role of a man who traces the last days of Vincent van Gogh and tries to find out what really happened because it still remains a mystery. He's shot in a really cool way. They employed more than 500 artists in different countries in Europe to paint in Van Gogh's style, so there are thousands of paints that we used to put together the film. It's a different way of making a movie, it's a green screen, but we didn't know exactly what it would look like. It was one of those projects that came very late and just another independent vibe.

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WWD: What is your dream and how do you see your career taking shape after the success of “Poldark”?

NO.:Just continue to do solid work and stay engaged and interested and work with talented people and do a good job. It's a bit obvious, really, you need something that affects you and sees the team around you, if they want you to be involved, it all comes together. I don't know if I have a larger image necessarily. In a way, it's as easy as that. Once you keep following good work, these things tend to take care of themselves. It's just about keeping everything exciting and interesting in between.

WWD: They talk about you as possiblejames link- although it looks like Daniel Craig might have one last Bond movie in him. Would you like this role?

NO.:There is someone else doing this job, so I won't comment. I feel like it's not my place. Someone is that character now.

RELATED: James Bond's Sophisticated Style Returns to Screens in 2019 >>

WWD: What do you do when you're not working?

NO.:I like to work, I don't like to relax. Work motivates me, and even when I take vacations, I meet friends, talk about projects and organize meetings, organize meetings with other people or get involved. I have been to Odessa four times. Culturally and politically, I think it's a very interesting place. This film festival is really taking off, it's in its eighth year and I've seen it grow from the beginning, so I have this connection to the venue and the festival. I was hired as a juror last week. It is a city that I love and I have friends there now.

Pole position: "Poldarks" Aidan Turner on stage, screen - and horse (10)

WWD: You are from Dublin, but you have just moved to London, to an 18th century house. I think you've gotten used to life in a Georgian setting.

NO.:I bought a house in East London and moved into it just two days ago, and my head is in the clouds right now. It was easier for work and my friends and part of my family. I've been going back and forth for 15 years, so it's not a huge leap for me, but it was very strange to walk into the house. I thought there was something almost profound turning the key and after 15 minutes I felt right at home. I was walking around for an hour thinking it was cool but almost too familiar. strange experience. There are a lot of things I want to do and I have little patience, so I'll probably start right away.

WWD: What else have you been spending your money on?

NO.:I buy art Right now I love Harland Miller. He is brilliant. I have some of his piezas. I never approach people, or do fan stuff, but last year at Frieze, I saw him and he was alone, and I walked up to him, shook his hand, and then his son came and I got really nervous, so I left. Try to keep calm, after all it's Harland Miller! I love Tracy Emin. She is always doing interesting things. Ivan Seal is a very nice guy. Hace poco le comprré una pieza. He currently works in Berlin, but he is from Manchester. Eddie Peake can also be fun.

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World Water Day: Dunhill is their first ad campaign. Why partner with them and what other brands do you use?

NO.:Dunhill chose a great line, clothes that I would wear with good, simple lines. The tailored material is also beautiful. For facts, premieres and various events,ricardo jamesit is always very good.BurberryI would use it from time to time, but right now it's mostly Dunhill.

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