***cut to filmed interview***
AJ: So series 3 of Mad Dogs. Philip (who looked quite surprised to be called on first!) what do you think the secret of the longevity of this series is; what’s the appeal?
PG: Well… storytelling really; good writing, good acting. (With a cheeky smile) Can’t vouch for the others but…
AJ: You were friends already; you worked together in different combinations. Do you think that’s helped being convincing characters; that it comes across as more genuine?
JS: Well, we’re playing four friends so yeah, it’s definitely helped with the chemistry; you sort of get a lot for nothing from the off really if you know each other. I think it helps; there’s a lot that we don’t have to act. Erm, we’re playing four not particularly nice characters, so y’know that’s the only difference.
AJ: Well it’s interesting you should say that because my next question was going to be, 'do you identify with the characters?' Max? You are quite flawed characters? Do you find sympathies with them?
JS: Very flawed yes.
MB: Yeah we are flawed. I think out of the four, I think Woody’s characters the most… the nicest wouldn’t you say? (Everyone agrees) We started from a level of respect for each other and a little bit of love and by the end of this journey that we’ve all been on we’re…
PG: We’re all divorced.
MB: We really have become very, very, very close which is a rarity in the business which is great.
AJ: Is it because it’s quite an intense experience, the filming experience, working altogether?
MB: I think it’s more eating together.
PG: It’s actually very enjoyable. I think we’re all of an age, some older than others
MB: I’m the youngest.
PG: That y’know we’ve been through all the party animal stuff so it’s actually rather nice to…
MB: (laughing and looking at the others) You speak for yourself, kid
PG: (joins in with laughter) to just go out and have a nice meal.
MW: When this all started that was one of the main premises, what it’s like being a man turning forty, y’know? And we’re all… well three of us are in our forties
MW: One of us has progressed. But yeah, so that was the premise of the whole thing really and just the choices you make.
AJ: And didn’t the original ide come from something you came up with yourself?
MW: I had a meeting and I went in and I wrote a piece about four guys in a band and that kind of got shot out of the water really (everyone laughs) but the only two things I mentioned in it was that they were all turning 40, it’s like at the crossroads, which road do you take if you’re making choices and I also mentioned Majorca as I’d holidayed in Majorca and I really liked Majorca and I just thought it would be nice to film there and that was basically the only things they kept; the four of us and the Majorca idea.
AJ: What can we expect, John, from the next series, because you ended series 2 in a bit of a pickle?
JS: Yes. The first episode of series 3 goes in a completely different direction. It sort of knocks the first two series’ out of the water really. We end up in Cape Town and that’s what happened, we went from Majorca to Cape Town
PG: As you do
JS: (nods) As you do. Yes I think the end of series 2 we’d arrived in Morocco and…
MW: Yeah, we were in Ibiza weren’t we?
MB: Two is more of a road movie. One was quite concentrated I think that’s why it worked. It was quite smothering in a way, all the drama focused on the four of us with of course, Ben Chaplin, who was excellent in it. Then two becomes more of a road movie and then three I think we’ve got back to that again, the nucleus of the four chaps and their dilemmas. And it’s very exciting.
(Note: At this point, Phil is clearly distracted by something off camera… he’s looking away and looks quite pensive.)
AJ: And give me an idea of the filming, do you all live in the same house, cook for each other and go out together?
JS: No, we’d drive each other mad if we did that.
MW: We have different apartments.
JS: We live next door to each other.
MW: Max cooks for us. Max is the cook.
(Note: Phil seems to remember where he is and what he’s meant to be doing and refocuses his attention on the interview)
MB: I like cooking for the boys. It’s a great expression of love without going too far obviously (sniggers from the others).
MW: Without being weird.
MB: No we stayed in a beautiful Marina opposite the ‘One and Only’ and we’d very often… That’s the great thing and a reflection of how close we all were… on our days off where, normally on a job you’d just want to have your own inner sanctum and read and get away from everybody, we’d miss each other . Phil and I one day decided we were going to go to a winery, and it was probably one of the best days.
MW: You sort of fell in love really, didn’t you?
MB: We kind of fell in love at that point yeah and we’ve been together ever since. (Phil reaches over and takes Max’s hand)
JS: That was day one wasn’t it really?
MB: (holding Phil’s hand) Yeah, day one.
AJ: On that very beautiful note, we will leave it there but thank you all very much.
PG, JS, MW, MB: (Phil and Max still holding hands) Thank you.
***back to studio***
AJ: They were great. You don’t really think of Mad Dogs as being a romantic.
Other presenter: Not at all, not at all but when you’ve got a cast like that you can turn it into absolutely anything. I'm quite looking forward to this.
AJ: Yeah that’s right; they’re all class acts aren’t they? Fantastic stuff.
We can now bring you a video of the interview (copyright belongs to Sky News):