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20 Questions with… One Man, Two Guvnors' Owain Arthur

Owain Arthur returns to play Francis Henshall in the West End production of One Man, Two Guvnors this week (from 23 September 2013)

Owain Arthur in One Man, Two Guvnors

Where did you grow up?
Rhiwlas in North Wales

Was your home very theatrical?
Not at all. Father is a baker and my mother's a nurse.

What made you want to be an actor?
I thought I could kiss a Bond girl if I became an actor.

Did you have a back-up job?
Many in my mind I thought I could do but I've been acting since I was 12. I started the Knowledge of London [training course for cab drivers] once.

First big break?

Career highlight to date?
Walking on stage as a horse on all fours and suddenly realising I shouldn't be there. Completely upstaged a dramatic moment on stage.

Favourite co-stars?
Everyone that's nice. The list is too long, but The History Boys are up there. We're still best mates.

What was the first thing you saw on stage that had a big impact on you?
Equus when I was 13 - first time I saw nakedness on stage.

And the last?
Equus when I was 26!

How does it feel to be returning to One Man Two Guvnors?
I'm very excited! "Avengers Assemble".

Will it be slightly different this time round?
Slightly, in that there are new members to the company, actors I haven't worked with yet and some who have been there from the very beginning at the NT - all of them very talented and eager to give a great show night after night.

Why do you think the show has been such a hit?
Richard Bean and Sir Nicholas Hytner and Grant Olding and Cal Mcrystal and the National Theatre and The Adelphi and Theatre Royal Haymarket and casting department and stage management and wigs and wardrobe and producers and every single actor involved along the way and...

How do you go about making the role your own?
As you'd approach any other role you have to take it by the balls and speak the lines as if you've never said them before in your life.

What is your favourite post-show hang out?
I sit and stare at the wall like a mad man for about five minutes before getting ready to leave the dressing room then usually go home. But if I want a pint I'll go to The Two Chairmen or Soho House (best burger in London).

How do you unwind?
See above.

If you could swap places with anyone for a day, who would it be?
Neil Armstrong when he stepped on the moon.

Who is your acting idol?
James Corden.

Favourite film?
Lesbian Vampire Killers.

Where would you like to be in ten years' time?
Wherever James Corden has been.

Future dream roles?
James Corden in the life of James Corden. I love you man.

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