ENTERTAINMENT

WISE WORDS: Shaun Dooley, Star Of 'Broadchurch' And 'Ordinary Lies' On A Father's Advice, And Hitting Pause

21/04/2015 13:05 BST | Updated 11/05/2015 13:59 BST

In the latest of our new WISE WORDS interview series - where stars from a whole range of walks of life share the important lessons they've learned along the way - we're chatting to actor Shaun Dooley, star of 'Broadchurch', 'Misfits' and, most recently, 'Ordinary Lies'.

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Shaun, who's been acting since he was a teenager , has been increasingly high-profile of late - with his enigmatic turn in the second series of 'Broadchurch', 'Misfits' and in tonight's concluding part of 'Ordinary Lies'. We chat to him on a rare day off before he heads to the coast to continue filming police drama 'Cuffs' and find out what's really important...

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Shaun Dooley stars in the concluding part of 'Ordinary Lies' tonight on BBC1

What do you do to switch off from the world?

I find it quite hard to switch off. My mind is really active. If I try to switch off, I’m thinking of all the films I want to write, the children's books, etc. Intead, I'll sit down in front of a film, commit to it and just escape.

How do you deal with negativity?

I must admit I tend to hunt it down. I will type in negative things to find them, but it's because I’m better at taking negativity than compliments. When I'm on set, if someone tells me we need another take, I can respond to that more positively than if someone says it's all okay. I use it as a fuel to make me work harder.

When and where are you happiest?

Definitely with my wife and four kids, I love Christmas with the kids. They're aged 10, nine, four and three (three girls and a boy) - the perfect ages for festivities - and we don't have any outside interference. This year we filmed Father Christmas coming down the chimney.

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Shaun with David Tennant in the second series of 'Broadchurch'

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

It was from my dad when I was about sixteen. He changed my life with a few words. I wanted to be a vet when I was young, but I failed all my exams. There was one little light, in that my theatre group teacher though I should be an actor. I went to my dad and asked him what he thought. He was a miner. He told me, 'You're going to be unemployed whatever you do, so you might as well be unemployed chasing the dream."

What has been the hardest lesson you’ve learned?

That I can’t slow time, I can’t keep the world from revolving, I can’t keep my children as babies. I just want to hit pause and not miss anything. I'm having trouble dealing with that.

What would you tell your 13-year-old self?

I wouldn’t tell him anything. I’d be Marty McFly. The mistakes I made, everything I went through, brought me here to my beautiful wife and kids, so I honestly wouldn't change a thing.

What are the three things are at the top of your bucket list?

For a film I've written to be made, for a novel I've written to be published, and a song I've written to be played on the radio.

What do you think happens when we die?

I think you live on in the loved ones you leave behind.

When do you feel a sense that we live in the presence of something bigger than ourselves?

When we're in nature and other people’s culture. I love travelling and I'm trying to pass that to the children as well.

I like undulating landscapes. I went to South America, and climbed a mountain for sunset. A condor flew down, and my first instinct was to grab my camera, but I put it down. I just wanted the memory for myself.

What do you try to bring to your relationships?

I just try to be a decent human being, treating people the way I would wish to be treated.

What keeps you grounded?

Family life. I presented a BAFTA award once to Stephen Moffat and, when I got home, there was a welly on the doorstep covered in dog poo for me to clean. That told me.

What was your last good deed?

Yesterday, I was filming in Brighton, and there was a lady on the train struggling with her bags. I jumped out of my seat, opened the door and made sure she got off the train.. I believe very much in being a gentleman. My boy will be a gentleman.

Ordinary Lies concludes on Tuesday 21 April at 9pm on BBC One. Trailer below...


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