‘The Watchers’ actor Alistair Brammer on the “magic” of shooting the film and working with Dakota Fanning

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British actor Alistair Brammer appears in the new supernatural film ‘The Watchers’, produced by M. Night Shyamalan and starring Dakota Fanning. The story of a woman who is stalked by mysterious creatures in an Irish forest, it was released in the UK and USA on 7 June. Alistair is known for his work on big-screen projects such as ‘Medieval’, ‘Les Misérables’ and ‘A Call To Spy’. His television work includes playing DS Tarrant in ‘Dalgliesh’, as well as appearing in ‘House of the Dragon’, ‘Casualty’ and ‘Episodes’, and he’s also starred in West End and Broadway shows including ‘Wicked’, ‘War Horse’ and ‘Miss Saigon’. Here he talks about the challenges and joys of shooting ‘The Watchers’, working with his idols, and his recent Finnish adventure…

What was it like filming ‘The Watchers’? 

“We shot in the forests of Wicklow just outside Dublin, which was an extraordinary experience. They’re so beautiful and bleak, it feels like there really is magic in those woods. And it was so brilliant to work with Ishana Shyamalan on her feature directorial debut. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree – her father is M. Night Shyamalan, who produced the film, and she’s a real visionary just like him. She also wrote the movie, which is incredibly impressive for someone so young. She’s such a sweet person – her whole family was so welcoming to me on set. We had some lovely dinners after shooting and it was a joy coming to work every day. As an actor, it pushed me in many ways. It’s all about being challenged and meeting those challenges head on – as you’ll see in the opening of the movie, it was a ride!”

Tell us about your role in the film?

“I play John, the husband of Ciara, played by the wonderful Georgina Campbell. I can’t say an awful lot without spoilers, but let’s just say we meet John first in the film, and he’s in some trouble! It was such a fun role.” 

How did it feel working alongside Dakota Fanning?

“Dakota was a fantastic leading lady. She was professional and knew exactly what she was doing. She set an amazing example and is also such an endearing person. There’s one particular scene we did together that was very physical. I won’t say any more! But I loved acting with her. I’ve been a fan since she played a 10-year-old girl in ‘War of the Worlds’. But I have to say, the whole cast were wonderful. Georgina Campbell and Oliver Finnegan were brilliant too, and, of course, the powerhouse that is Olwen Fouéré. One of the best actresses, and one of the coolest people, that I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. She’s a rockstar!” 

What are you looking forward to next?

“I’ve got the new season of ‘Dalgliesh’ coming out in the autumn, which I’m excited for people to see. I’m also in a TV production called ‘Valhalla Project’, due to air later this year or early next year, in which I play a climate scientist. That was amazing fun. Shooting in icy Finland. Sledging between takes! Other than that, I’m enjoying being with my wife and sons for now. I wouldn’t mind getting my teeth into a theatrical project again soon, but for now, I’m enjoying riding the wave of TV and film work.”