Thanks to fellow fan Ellen an article about Richard in one of Germany’s foremost women’s magazines has surfaced.
Ellen has also posted it on her blog, so please read and comment there if you can. ETA: Ellen also has translated the text. But for those of you who can’t read German, I have taken the liberty to translate the text for you.
You only have to believe yourself
Actor Richard Armitage may find his method lazy, but the result is pretty good
His biggest role so far made Richard Armitage small: In the three “Hobbit” fantasy movies (2012 to 2014), he was the dark king of the dwarves Thorin Oakenshield who trusted no one, wore a sad moustache across his mouth and sung with sonorous beauty. Things end badly for the dwarf, but for the man things looked up from then on.
British-born Richard Armitage, 48, is a classically trained actor, once worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company and has already got an Olivier Award – the most important English theatre award – on his shelf. On film and TV he is often playing guys who keep silent and spring into action rather than listen to their inner voice and discover their feelings (including the king of dwarves who is not exactly the sensitive type).
You can now put him to the test in two current productions: Julie Delpy’s clever drama “My Zoe” has been freshly released on DVD and stream (i.e. Amazon, iTunes). It is set in the near future and centers around a newly divorced couple who are fighting for their daughter. Until something bad happens and the woman (played by Delpy herself), a passionate geneticist and an even more passionate mother, attempts to wrench something from nature that no one has ever attempted before. Armitage appears mostly in the first half of the film, playing the hurt, bitter, abandoned husband who nevertheless wants his ex back.
At the same time the actor currently appears in the Netflix mini series “The Stranger”, based on a novel by thriller author Harlan Coben. The title of the English original reflects the story much better: A mysterious woman appears in some people’s lives and confronts them with secrets previously well hidden. Armitage plays the happily married father of two sons to whom the stranger discloses an incredible secret about his wife (see page 40).
In the past, Armitage described himself as a method actor, i.e. an actor who completely melds with his role. “But that is also a lazy approach”, he says. “If you do, you don’t have to play any more. You only have to believe yourself.” We, in any case, believe him. Anything.
The caption on the accompanying photo reads:
Richard Armitage’s beautiful and deep voice makes it worth while watching his films and series in the English original
(The article appears in the current issue of Brigitte. I have checked their online version but the article is not there (yet?). Brigitte Woman is currently number 8 in the ranking of the German language women’s magazine.)
A little mistake notwithstanding – unfortunately that Olivier Award went to someone else the year Richard was nominated for his turn as John Proctor in The Crucible – it’s a nice and friendly article about Richard, and it pleases me very much to see a German magazine devote a whole page to him. He is not really a well-known name over there. They have chosen a pleasant image of him, too, even if it is not necessarily one of my favourites. But hey, he smiles and looks much less than the darkly brooding and ambiguous type he so often embodies on film. And the choice of quote is nice, too – the undertone of self-depreciation may even come through to us Germans
who are not always the most sensitive to irony and humour. It’s a likeable quality which I have always appreciated in Richard. Most of all, I like that the writer picked out one of his Richard’s most compelling attributes – his gorgeous voice. Ms Hentschel – your article may not contain anything groundbreakingly new for fans like me, but I like what you have done there.