Rupert took part in the cinema event Matisse Live from Tate Modern on the evening of Tuesday 3 June (with further screenings from 4 November). He was the narrator for the film, with Francine Stock presenting and Simon Russell Beale standing in for Matisse.
Thanks to Manuela, we discovered that the director Phil Grabsky had some lovely things to say about Rupert in his blog:
… I moved on to the narrative of the Matisse film. For this important role, we’d chosen Rupert Young. My younger viewers will know him from Merlin. He is, as my daughter explains, the knight that never dies. Very nice guy and I liked his approach to the reading – nothing pompous or arty – just good strong storytelling. That’s exactly what we’re trying to do.
Of course you’ll get no disagreement from me on the ‘very nice guy’ remark – and the rest was absolutely true as well. I’ve just come home from watching the event, and I enjoyed it greatly.
Rupert took part in a Twitter Q+A as part of the promotion for the Noel Coward plays Tonight at 8:30, in which he’s currently featuring at Nuffield Theatre in Southampton. If you can’t make it there, remember the show goes on tour throughout England. Details are in this post.
Unfortunately I completely missed the Q+A, but a good friend of mine has kindly compiled a transcript, which I’ve copied below (with her permission).
Q: Do you have any pre-show rituals or routines? A: I do a singing warm up for half an hour then go through the script then get into costume at the quarter. 5 mins to myself before the show
Q: Are you superstitious? A: Yes, every do often, like always taking a sip of water at the same points in the play each day.
Q: Which of the parts you play in #TonightAt830 is your favourite? A: I love Karl in We Were Dancing, for instant audience reaction. Also Simon in Shadow Play and I love Alf in Red Peppers.
Q: From @DCTully Which play is your favourite? A: My favourite keeps changing. Red Peppers is great to watch. Astonished Heart is an extraordinary play, all of them at some point! There isn’t a play in the nine that I don’t absolutely adore.
Another interview with Rupert prompted by the Merlin fifth season finale in the US – again by Curt Wagner for RedEye Chicago.
I’m waiting for my big moment, you know? I am waiting for the spinoff. I think it will be more ‘Games of Thrones,’ a little bit darker. So kind of a nine o’clock show. Maybe Starz can pick it up, make it a little bit more adult—more nudity.
Rupert was interviewed by Curt Wagner for the RedEye Chicago website as part of Merlin‘s fifth season finale promotion. This interview in particular is nice and in-depth! (I love how the first direct question is about his hair…)
You heard I played a donkey? That’s very good knowledge. Yeah, that’s when I realized I was destined to the stage, I think. My mother made me an amazing donkey ears. I was always taken to the theater with my mum to see things. Theater seemed really exciting to me. … I’ve been so lucky.
Rupert was interviewed by Curt Wagner for the RedEye Chicago website as part of the fifth season finale promotion in the US. You can read the interview and see the associated photo gallery here. However, I’ve also copied the text below for the sake of having it all in one place (all rights remain with the author and RedEye).
1. [photo of] Rupert Young, who played Sir Leon
Rupert Young had plans to get together with Eoin Macken the day of our interview, and with Tom Hopper the day after. “It really was like a kind of sibling relationship–especially with the knights,” Young said of the bond between the “Merlin” actors. “We can wind each other up but also we just have a real laugh together.”
2. Knights of the Roundtable, with Merlin
The cast and crew of “Merlin” finished filming the fifth and final season quite awhile ago, but that doesn’t mean they don’t see each other any more. According to Rupert Young, many of the actors still get together. With that in mind, I asked Young to do an exercise in which I said a co-star’s name (mostly those who played the Knights of the Roundtable) and he said what popped into his head.
Rupert was interviewed by Jenna Busch as the final episodes of Merlin were being broadcast in the United States. Among other things, Rupert said about the series finale:
I think we wouldn’t have done our job if people aren’t sad. I think people are going be satisfied. I think it could’ve gone on for another few series, but I think it’s good to end with people wanting more, so I think we end on a high.