Eddie Marsan tears up as he shares privilege of filming new BBC series Ridley Road
Ridley Road: BBC release trailer for new drama series
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Eddie Marsan, 53, will begin starring as Soly Malinovsky in the BBC’s new drama series Ridley Road tonight. Discussing his involvement with Express.co.uk and other media, the actor emotionally called the work an “honour” as he shared what drew him to the project.
Set in the 1960s, Ridley Road is an adaptation of Jo Bloom’s 2015 debut novel of the same name.
It follows a young Jewish woman called Vivien Epstein (played by Agnes O’Casey) who goes undercover in a neo-Nazi organisation.
Adapted by actor and writer Sarah Solemani, the four-part drama follows a group called the 62 Group.
These were a group of anti-fascists who stood up to neo-Nazis in the 1960s.
Their leader in the show is Soly, who is played by Happy-Go-Lucky star Eddie.
Speaking about his role in the show, Eddie opened up to Express.co.uk when filming earlier this year.
He said: “It’s a great character to play, it’s very inspiring. And I’m very honoured.”
The actor was approached by writer Sarah for the role, who wrote it with him in mind.
For Eddie, tackling the subject of anti-Semitism was very close to his heart, as he emotionally spoke about the role.
Speaking alongside his fellow actor Tracy-Ann Oberman, he praised her knowledge and experience after she was targeted by anti-Semitism.
Former EastEnders star Tracy plays Eddie’s wife in the series, Nancy Malinovsky.
The actor explained how her grandparents were friends of people in the 62 Group as well as how she has faced anti-Semitism on social media.
Speaking about working with her, Eddie admitted he was getting “emotional”.
The actor tearfully said: “Can I just say, that’s an example of how privileged we were to have Tracy on set because she suffered incredible abuse, I’m getting emotional now, incredible anti-semitism.
“Much more than any of us. To have someone to give you that emotional context….
“Acting isn’t only about an academic approach, it’s about visceral emotion, and to have someone like Tracy on set, just makes it so much easier.”
Later during the discussion on the context of the show, Eddie admitted he was “struggling” with his emotions.
The actor also opened up about his hopes that the show will help people question the rise of anti-Semitism and fascism on social media.
He explained: “[Sarah] said a great thing. She said to me that, ‘What we’re trying to deal with is the rise of antisemitism and fascism through social media.
“‘Social media is an art and art is persuasion.’
“She said, ‘I think you can be more persuasive with stories like this.’
“And that’s why I wanted to do it because I wanted to do the persuasion.”
Ridley Road will be on BBC iPlayer from Sunday, October 3 at 9pm.
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