Snatch. Picture: Supplied

Rupert Grint has done a superb job of distancing himself from his Harry Potter popularity by slipping into the skin of characters far removed from Ron Weasley.

And, at 29, he’s gone on to expand his film-making repertoire by wearing the hat of co-executive producer on this series. 

Of the TV version, Grint says, “It’s  gonna be a completely different story. It’s very much in the same universe that the original film existed in. And that’s really important to have that. Now, it’s a heightened kind of world. I’m really enjoying it. 

Unlike his co-stars, Grint got to read the script first. 

“I met with Alex De Rakoff quite early on and we were talking about it. It just sounded like such a great idea, about these three guys who have their own kind of obstacles and motivation. Suddenly they see this gold, and it kind of changes everything. 

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The gold is like its own character, really. It’s interesting how each character deals with it their own different way. I just love the idea of it. I was a huge fan of Snatch,” he admits. 

Shedding some light on his character, Charlie Cavendish, he offers, “It took a while to kind of find him. Charlie is quite an oddity. He’s not really someone you encounter much in reality. He’s kind of an aristocrat with no money. His parents and his family have wasted theirs as well. It’s just kind of a front, really.

There’s a lot of pride with Charlie. He kind of feels always that he’s not quite fitting in as well. He’s always kind of having to justify his position on the crew, which is quite interesting. I’ve never played anyone like him. So it’s been great.”

Meanwhile, actor-cum-singer Lucian Laviscount (Scream Queens fame) admits, “ I’m a die-hard fan (of the movie). When I heard that they were going to do a TV show, I was in front of my agent and I was going, please listen please, please, please, get me in for this. And it worked out. And I’m looking to work with some very old friends. I’ve known Luke Pasqualino for eight years. It’s too much fun sometimes.”

In introducing us to his character, he notes, “Billy comes with this cocky, sort of cool self-confidence. He’s got a big heart for his friends. He’s there for the ride, he’s there for the journey and to keep everyone else out of trouble.”

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He has nothing but admiration for director Nick Renton. He laughs, “Nick won’t mind me saying this, ‘Nick’s kind of a little bit crazy’. And it’s that sort of over active mind that elevates him to being an amazing director because he will look at a scene completely differently than how we’ve ever seen it, or a way that we’ve never even thought about seeing it, and he’ll sort of plant that seed in your head, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. 

Nick’s mind is always going and Nick will give you a note in a way that sometimes you can’t even understand, but then they’ll say one thing at the very end of it, and everything will become apparent.

Fans will remember Pasqualino from the adventure series, Three Musketeers. 

On preparing for the pilot episode, he shares, “It’s a cocktail of different things really, the material is everything. The biggest thing that you find is that you want to keep turning the pages. I’ve read so many scripts that, after 10 pages, leave you wanting to make a cup of tea and come back to it later.”

Thoroughly impressed by the writing, he adds, “Albert is the son of Vic Hill, who is a notorious bank robber in his day, and best friends with Billy Ayers. He’s trying to make his own way in the big wide world, but he’s still got that father figure of Vic, sort of leering down at him, trying to run his life from inside prison, which he can’t seem to shake, and he’s got an undying love for his dad. At the same time, he’s this huge hindrance to his life.”

Snatch, while dominated by male leads, does have a few strong female characters, too. The series is a wonderful mélange of comedy, action and drama. That it is inspired by Guy Ritchie’s movie certainly sweetens the appeal. 

* Snatch airs on M-Net (DStv Channel 101) on Thursdays at 10pm. 

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