Interview with Kenny Doughty plays the role of Gaz in The Full Monty.
The World Premiere of The Full Monty is coming to Dublin’s Bord Gais Energy Theatre for one week only from Monday, 8th – Saturday, 13thApril 2013. Tickets are on sale now.
In 1997, the film about six out-of-work Sheffield steelworkers who had nothing to lose, took the world by storm taking $256 million worldwide and becoming one of the most successful British films ever made. And now, the boys are back, live on stage, only this time, for them, it really has to be….THE FULL MONTY. Kenny Doughty plays the role of Gaz in The Full Monty.
What can you tell us about the stage show of The Full Monty?
It’s fun. It’s vibrant. It’s a great night out. It manages to tell a wonderful heartfelt story with huge laughs along the way.
How does the stage show differ from the cult movie that made it famous?
Firstly I’m a big fan of the film but I think our play is different. The characters and relationships feel richer as we’ve had a long rehearsal process (with Simon Beaufoy in the room) getting to know and explore them. It was very clear from day one that this is a new play based on the film rather than just putting the film on stage.
Have you performed in Ireland before? Are you looking forward to it?
Unfortunately I haven’t but my wife, Caroline Carver (who plays my ex-wife Mandy in the play), has. While she was filming in Dublin I went off and explored the city which I adored. I’m very much looking forward to coming back and not only for the Guinness!
How much practice and preparation are involved in a production like this?
I’ve been attached to this production for the best part of a year and involved in various rehearsed readings as the play was rewritten and rewritten. As a Yorkshire lad it’s been great to rediscover the history of the steelworks, the politics of the time and the sensibility of the men of the time. 1988 was very different to what we know now. On top of this I knew it was going to be a very physical show and not only the dancing – so was aware that I needed to get my fitness levels up!
Did you have any reservations about stripping off to packed theatres every night?
With a play like this it doesn’t feel gratuitous at all and from the reaction we’ve had so far the audiences are whooping at the delight of the characters fulfilling their personal journeys. There are 6 of us in the final strip scene and it’s been such a bonding process doing it. Dare I say even quite liberating (if a little daunting).
I’ve had to be semi naked in quite a few jobs over the years including with Andie MacDowell on the film Crush … it is quite daunting if I’m honest. The difficult thing is being truthful to the character and not allowing your own vanity to dictate how you look – but in this day and age of body size obsession that is difficult.
How do audiences react when the cast, go the full monty?
Because the Full Monty strip happens at the end of the play the audiences have been on the journey with the 6 lads. They know what it costs for them to do it. What it means for their lives. And because of that there is an audible rooting and delight for them to do it. It’s delightful.
Do any of the guys ever get shy before going on stage?
There is a very definite palpable rush of adrenaline – I wouldn’t say shy – a mixture of ‘Are we really going to this?’ to ‘Come on lads let’s go for it!’
Is there a fitness or work-out regime you have to follow for the show?
I’ve been quite disciplined about my pre-show workout which not only includes a vocal warm up but a physical one too. I do a hybrid physical work-out of yoga and cardio. It’s a tough physical show that requires solid core strength and stamina.
Why do you think The Full Monty is still as popular today as when it first came out?
I actually think the Full Monty is more apt now than when it came out in 1997. In the play, as well as now we are dealing with recession, unemployment, politics, personal identity and survival. The similarities continue – in the UK we have a Conservative led government again but more than all of that we love the characters and identify with their journeys and struggles. Because of the wonderful writing of Simon we manage to share their stories through laughter and, at times, deep poignancy.
ON TO MOVIES
How often to you get to sit down and watch a movie?
Before being consumed with The Full Monty I’d watch a movie 2-3 times a week.
Tell us about the last movie you saw? (either in cinema, video, DVD or TV)
I saw The Impossible which broke my heart.
What is your favorite Irish movie and why?
My Left Foot – the sheer force of nature that is Daniel Day-Lewis. A constant inspiration to all actors.
What is your favourite movie of all time?
That’s a tough, tough question as I have so many favourite films that I can watch again and again. But if I can only have one then – It’s a Wonderful Life.
What movie could you never sit through again? (How come?)
Battle in Heaven – I wanted to leave the cinema during the movie but sat through it all. Gratuitous, and quite frankly, an irritating film – shock for the sake of shock is not my thing. Fake art!
Have you ever cried during a movie? Which one?
I have. Quite a few. But more recently I cried watching Beasts of the Southern Wild – a wonderful, gorgeous film. It’s my movie of 2012.
The One Movie You Haven’t Seen But Really Want To? (How come?)
I pride myself on being up to date with the new releases but because of The Full Monty schedule I’ve had no downtime. I’m desperate to see Django Unchained and Zero Dark Thirty … I know that’s 2 but I may have to do a double bill when I next get time.
Your Guilty Pleasure (Is there a movie you like that everyone else hates?)
Ha! I will always sit through and watch ‘Weird Science’ whenever it’s on … my friends think I’m bonkers but I remember being a kid in the 80’s watching it and it brings back so many fond memories!
The First Movie You Ever Saw In A Cinema?
Ghostbusters – I queued up when it opened but didn’t get in so had to go back the following day and queue up for HOURS to see it. Worth it though!
What Movie Do You Wish They’d Make A Sequel To? Or The TV Show You Wish they’d turn into a Movie?)
Generally I’m not a fan of sequels with the exception of Godfather II. But, not really a sequel but I’d love another film that continues the world of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy … Smiley’s men?
Favourite movie snack?
I love a huge bag of mixed sweets – pick ‘n mix.
Favourite TV programme?
Breaking Bad – can’t wait for the finale this year!
Who would play you in the movie adaptation of your life?
If time travel was possible then I’d be forever happy if Gary Oldman did.
THE FULL MONTY runs from Monday, 8th – Saturday, 13th April 2013. Tickets are on sale now.