Q&A with Norwich-raised actor Sam Claflin

Sam Claflin in The Quiet Ones. Picture credit: Nick Ansell/PA Photos. Sam Claflin in The Quiet Ones. Picture credit: Nick Ansell/PA Photos.

Thursday, April 10, 2014
4:32 PM

He only graduated from drama school five years ago, but Ipswich-born, Norwich-raised actor Sam Claflin, who is worshipped by teens the world over for his role in The Hunger Games, already has a string of Hollywood roles under his belt.

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01/04/2014 PA File Photo of Sam Claflin arriving for the premiere of The Quiet Ones at The Odeon West End, Leicester Square, London. See PA Feature FILM Claflin. Picture credit should read: Nick Ansell/PA Photos. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Claflin.01/04/2014 PA File Photo of Sam Claflin arriving for the premiere of The Quiet Ones at The Odeon West End, Leicester Square, London. See PA Feature FILM Claflin. Picture credit should read: Nick Ansell/PA Photos. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Claflin.

His latest project is the creepy new Hammer horror flick The Quiet Ones. He plays Brian in the movie, a cameraman employed by Professor Coupland (Jared Harris) to film a disturbed young woman called Jane Harper (Olivia Cooke), who appears to be haunted by a poltergeist.

The Quiet Ones was actually shot in summer which must have made it difficult to capture the gloomy atmosphere and tense scenes during filming?

It was just tough having to look at all the other guys’ scared faces all day every day [laughs]. Every time you turned around, you’d catch someone else’s eye as they were pulling [their scared faces] and you try not to laugh. Then you’d have the director vocalising the sound effects, so that in itself was quite hilarious.

Last year you married British actress Laura Haddock [best-known for her role in The Inbetweeners Movie]. Can we expect to see you united on screen?

We’re huge supporters of each other’s work and we constantly help each other learn lines, and with auditions. Even if I’m across the world, we’ll go over lines on Skype. We’re hugely supportive and that’s our dream [to work together]. That’s how we met, at an audition room, and we’re trying to find the right thing.

Are you surprised by the level of success you’ve had so quickly?

It’s still something I’m trying to let sink in. Everything has happened so quickly, I haven’t had the chance to sit down and go, ‘Wow. What’s just happened?’

What can you tell us about growing up in Norwich?

We [he has four brothers] had, not a tough upbringing and by no means should my parents take offence to this, but a very middle of the road [upbringing]. I had very average grades at school. It felt like we were blessed in many ways but at the same time we never had huge amounts of privilege or money, but it’s one of those things where now I feel very, very blessed. My parents keep bringing me back down to earth, in a good way.

They [classroom assistant mum, Sue, and accountant dad, Mark] must be proud?

At every premiere I invite her to, my mum asks ‘Are you sure you’re not going to be embarrassed by us? Shall I wear this?’. I say, ‘Mum, it doesn’t matter. Just be yourself’. They don’t know how proud I am of them, as much as they keep reminding me how proud they are of me.

You’re a die-hard Norwich City fan. Did you dream of pulling on a Canaries shirt professionally?

I don’t think I was ever that good. My favourite moment in football is Delia Smith [in 2005, taking to the pitch and rallying the crowd] going ‘Let’s be having you!’ What a hero.

■ The Quiet Ones is out now

Click here to read our review of the film

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