Interview: Greg Austin, Mr. Selfridge, & Doctor Who
Actor Greg Austin has been with the show for three seasons as Gordon Selfridge, Harry's enterprising son who worked his way from the loading bay to the board room. Now that the series is coming to an end, we caught up with the actor to get his insider scoop on the Selfridge cast, his future with the Doctor Who franchise, and his connection to actress Katherine Kelly (Lady Mae).
Watch his video recap of his last day on set, then read our exclusive interview with him below!
What do you do when you aren't acting?
When I'm not acting, you'll probably either find me playing a game or working on my YouTube channel. I'm an avid gamer, and have made a small (but growing) YouTube channel of me playing games and acting my normal silly self.
I also have a deep love of nature, so if I'm not doing something gaming-related, I'm likely to go outside and find something to climb, play with or investigate. It's here that I go when I need to just relax and forget the world, which I think everyone needs to do once in a while.
What did you learn that surprised you the most about the real Gordon Selfridge?
What suprised me most about the real Gordon Selfridge was actually about his sons, Ralph and Oliver. They were both highly respected in their fields, influencing Information Technology and Robotics deeply. Oliver Selfridge has even been referred to as "The Father of Machine Perception", being a pioneer in Artificial Intelligence.
Who in the Mr. Selfridge cast is the most like their character? The most unlike their character?
I think Callum Callaghan (George Towler) was most like his character. Callum is possibly one of the nicest and funniest people I've ever met, always worrying about everyone except himself, and going out of his way to make everyone's days brighter. I can't sing his praises highly enough.
As for who is most unlike their character, I'd say it was probably Tom Goodman-Hill (Mr. Grove). He's told me that he's been heckled by the public walking down the street for some of the things Mr. Grove has done! However in real life, he's incredibly professional, funny and kind. A fabulous actor.
Tell us about Gordon's mustache!
Oh dear, the moustache.
Well, first off, I never thought I could grow one. Some of you may still agree with that sentiment, but I was pretty pleased with how it turned out. Starting in Series 3, the producers of the show wanted me to appear older, and in those days, almost everyone of my age had a tache. So there it was.
I actually got very used to it, and would wonder why people sometimes gave me funny looks walking down the street. Now that it's finally gone, I'm incredibly relieved. Although I sometimes raise my hand to my lip to play with it, only to find it cold and bare. My poor upper lip.
Do you have a favorite story from your time on set with Jeremy?
He used to do really nice things for us all, for the cast and the crew, but one of my favorite things that he ever did was get this coffee bar on set. He paid for them to come in and had this truck that they came along in, and this old-timey coffee machine and they made some amazing hot chocolates and coffees. So I had one or two, or five of those. That was really sweet. He often did nice things like that for the cast and crew. It was just great working with him.
What's next for you?
At the moment I'm filming for a series called "Class" and it's a Doctor Who spinoff, which is really exciting! I've been filming on that for about a month now, we've got a few more months left, but really exciting stuff there. The filming has been great: pretty fast-paced, lots of visual effects, special effects--Which I've not done before. I'm hoping the Doctor Who fans are going to love it just as much as we're loving doing it, because hopefully it's going to be really cool to watch.
Katherine Kelly's a big fan favorite in Mr. Selfridge and we know she's in Class with you--Can you tell us about her new character?
Yeah, I'm working with Katherine Kelly again, which is such a delight! She's a genuinely lovely person. Everyone on set loves her, she gets along with anyone and everyone, and she's just an amazing person to do a scene with. She lightens the mood and brings an air of professionalism that you don't often see. I couldn't be happier to be working with her again. As for her character, I can't really say much, because the producers might shout at me as they're trying to keep our characters and the storyline under wraps--But I will say that he part is pretty damn cool. I don't think I can say anymore than that. But I'm sure you're going to love her!
Catch the series finale of Mr. Selfridge on Sunday, May 22, 2016 at 10:30/9:30c on MASTERPIECE on PBS. #SelfridgePBS