When you’re next considering a move into acting - enraptured by visions of louche Hollywood glamour, perhaps - take a moment to consider the dedication that the job can entail. Take a moment to salute actors, for instance, like Andrew Buchan. “I was filming The Sinking of the Laconia, ” Buchan tells me. “I had to tread water in the middle of the Atlantic, clinging on to a dead body, whilst singing ‘My Bonnie Lies Over The Ocean’. For an entire morning.” The water’s temperature was so biting, Buchan’s stuntman got out after twenty minutes and refused to get back in again. “A huge fish went past me, something basically the size of a Honda Civic. And you look at it and think “I’m about to get in there with that.”
Buchan - known to audiences for lead roles in Party Animals, The Fixer, Garrow's Law, and most recently as Broadchurch's grieving father Mark Latimer- is very much an actor’s actor. Charming, laid back and affable in person, he nevertheless exudes an unmistakable passion for what he does. “I’ve always embraced anything that’s a challenge,” he says of his work. “Anything that fills you with a little bit of fear, that can push me further as an actor. I’ve tended not to walk towards anything that feels too easy.”
A native of Bolton, England, he realised from a young age that the stage and screen were calling to him. “If I'm being brutally honest, it’s that you like doing it when you’re eight or nine because you like showing off in front of the class, putting on stupid voices and going “look at me.”” He ended up studying French and Spanish, however his passion for acting only grew and after a succession of odd jobs including concierge, bank clerk and manual labourer, he landed a coveted spot at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.