Aidan Turner says: It’s fun to play a character with Parkinson’s

Aidan Turner said playing a character with Parkinson’s is important to stay on track because you don’t often see protagonists in pain with the condition.

The 39-year-old Irish actor, who played Ross Poldark in the BBC series, will star in the new ITV thriller The Suspect.

The five-part series, adapted for the screen by Gangs Of London writer Peter Berry, is the debut novel by Michael Robotham.

Turner plays Doctor Joe O’Loughlin, who seems to have the perfect life but after the death of a young woman and an early-onset Parkinson’s disease diagnosis, the truth begins to unfold.

“I met a musician named Drew Hallam, who was diagnosed with early-onset Parkinson’s disease about five years ago when he was 35 years old.

“One of the first conversations we had something knocked me down when he said how hard it was when you were young with this condition.

“He says there are support groups, but Parkinson’s generally doesn’t affect young people. Talking to someone openly and honestly about his experience is very beneficial. “

The actor said they discussed how he would play a concussion role in the scene.


Shaun Park (Ian West / PA)

“We wanted to keep the concussion subtle because Joe was recently diagnosed, but enough for it to be readable on camera.

“Doing it right is very important. Parkinson’s affects different people in different ways.

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“We don’t often see a protagonist with Parkinson’s, so it was interesting to address that,” he said.

The film will also star Bafta nominee Shaun Parkes, Vigil’s Anjli Mohindra and Adam James, Peep Show actress Camilla Beeput, Fleabag’s Sian Clifford and Bobby Schofield from Time.

Turner said he made the “quick decision” to join after reading the script and described playing an unpredictable and unreliable protagonist as “refreshing”.


Anjli Mohindra (Matt Crossick / PA)

He said: “I was gripped. It was the ambiguity of the puzzle that attracted me immediately.

“The story feels weird from the start and as a spectator we weren’t sure what role Joe would play in it.

“This was thrilling for me when I first read the script. Joe is definitely a flawed character, very enjoyable to play. “

Turner revealed that he has “very good memories” of making the film, adding that it “felt great” filming the entire series in London.


Aidan Turner as Poldark (Tom Leese / PA)

“I really enjoyed working on The Suspect,” he said. The roles are challenging, the material is strong, and everyone looks as if they’re having fun on set every day.

“We filmed all over London, including around the Coal Drops Yard area in King’s Cross, which has completely changed in recent years. It’s a cool place.

“It’s rare these days to get a gig entirely in the city. I don’t think I’ve ever filmed anything entirely based in London.”

The Suspect will premiere on ITV channel at 9 pm on August 29. Aidan Turner says: It’s fun to play a character with Parkinson’s

Fry Electronics Team

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