Bill Nighy hasn’t seen his latest feature, the Sony Pictures classic release, “Living.” In fact, he has never seen any of his films. “It’s not because I’m vain,” says the actor. “I gave up watching myself very early on because it slowed me down so much that it made it hard for me to go back to work. I don’t learn anything, and it’s not helpful in any way. It’s probably a form of professional dysmorphia or something.”
Nighy has been earning rave reviews for “Living” since the film premiered at Sundance last year. First from British audiences and now international audiences are pouring in praise. The actor is considered the front-runner for a Best Actor nod when the Oscar nominations are announced on January 24.
All Nai knows is that the film and her performance resonated.
In this episode of the award-winning Variety Award Circuit podcast, we sit down with Nighy. “You know you’re on a hit when you get messages from people you haven’t heard from in 35 years. Or people say, ‘I can’t go to the movies,’ which is definitely music to my ears,” he said. Listen below!
In “Living,” Nighy plays Mr. Williams, a civil servant who decides to take life after receiving a terminal cancer diagnosis. But contrary to popular belief, “Living” is anything but a depressing film about a man facing mortality. In fact, it’s the opposite. And that’s where the film resonates with those who see it.
Nighy said: “It touches people. It deals with a couple of universal themes, one of which is mortality and the other is delay. It’s about a man who works in an organization that makes sure nothing happens for most of his life, and Then there’s a diagnosis that triggers a huge transformation.”
As a Brit, a stiff upper lip is instinctive, so was it easy for Nighy to navigate? “Yes, I’m very interested in that. I’m fascinated by that,” he said. “I appreciate it. I know it’s not healthy and I know it has a lot of flaws. I don’t want to go back to the 1930s when it was extreme. , but it wasn’t hard for me to slip into it.”
Nighy, who is currently producing on another project, has been flying back and forth between Los Angeles and Europe. And like most Brits, he loves a good cuppa tea. “I smuggle Yorkshire tea into America and every other country because if I run out, it’s game over,” he laughs.
What else does he smuggle? “I used to smuggle Marmite, but got caught a few times at the airport. I was greedy and I took a very large jar. The man said, ‘You can’t take it.
Finally, Nighy confirms what audiences already know: “‘Love Actually’ is a Christmas movie.” The actor, who starred in the 2003 film, talks about how audiences still come up to him and sing the first lines of “Christmas is Around.”
Also in this episode, Variety’s Clayton Davis chats with the stars of “RRR.” In addition, the roundtable discusses Golden Globe Award winners and SAG Award nominations.
Listen to Variety’s “Awards Circuit” podcast, produced by Michael Snyder, who also co-hosts with Clayton Davis, for lively conversation about the best in film and television. Each week “Awards Circuit” features interviews with top film and TV talent and creatives; discussions and debates about prize races and art titles; And much, much more. Subscribe via Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify, or wherever you download podcasts. New episodes posted weekly.