David Tennant On Signing Up For Gracepoint: "Enough Variables To Make It Fresh And Challenging"

David Tennant has explained why he chose the rather unusual step to sign up for Gracepoint, the American take on his acclaimed UK series Broadchurch to play essentially the same role. David was the only member of the original cast to cross the Atlantic to appear in the new show which filmed on Vancouver Island, Canada earlier this year.

Talking to US and Canadian press at the TV Critics Association Press Tour on Sunday, he said, "That was part of the reason it felt like too extraordinary an opportunity to miss. It felt like a really unprecedented thing to be asked to do. It doesn't really feel surreal.”

A seasoned theatre actor, David could see parallels to his work on stage, "It perhaps seems like an odder notion than it ultimately is. Acting's often about repeating the same part of a story again and again - you do a theatre show, you tell the same story eight times a week with the same actors surrounding you, so there were enough variables to make it fresh and challenging," he explained.

There was also the attraction of working again with material that he knew was of high quality with people that he had faith in. He felt that taking all of those factors into consideration that he would regret it if he hadn't grasped the opportunity when offered, " "You know this is a story that works and that any differences are going to be curated by producers that you know and trust.There's not going to be a pilot, there's not the torture of all that, it's not 20 million episodes... There are too many things that are right about this to let this opportunity go by. Then you think, 'I can't tune in next year and see some other person doing it'."

Much comment has been made of David's American accent. There has been some negative reaction, although it has mainly been UK sources who have felt it necessary to dwell on this. Generally US reaction has been favourable, with Shine America's Carolyn Bernstein describing his accent as 'impeccable'. David had access to a voice coach to help him, and enjoyed the new layers that it gave to his character, Detective Emmett Carver.

"In a way that was useful because it gave me a new point of concentration to work from and having a different voice makes you a different person," he said. "It makes you move differently, it makes you think at a different rate, it makes you approach things differently. I like working in accents, I like the sense of transformation it gives you. I like when the character doesn't feel like me, so anything that helps me to get there, I enjoy."

Gracepoint is a ten part murder mystery from Fox TV, produced by Shine America in association with Kudos and Imaginary Friends. The series follows the aftermath of the murder of a child in a sleepy northern Californian coastal town. Producers have said that although the concept largely follows Broadchurch, particularly in the early episodes, the series will introduce new characters, new twists and will have a different outcome. Other cast includes Anna Gunn, Nick Nolte, Kevin Zegers and Sarah-Jane Potts.

Gracepoint premieres in the USA on Fox on Thursday 2nd October at 9pm/8c

Source: Belfast Telegraph/PA