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Callum Scott Howells: "I used to tell all my friends that I was a Prince"

Callum Scott Howells, one of the stars of the Russell T Davis drama It's A Sin, talks inspirational drama teachers, woollen cardigans, and impersonating royalty

Callum Scott Howells

What upcoming project(s) are you most excited about?

I'm really excited about It's A Sin airing so that everyone can see the show. It means so much to everyone involved in creating it and who it is about.

Other than that I was due to be appearing in a play called Romeo and Julie by Gary Owen this year at the National Theatre which I was hugely excited about as I have wanted to perform at the National since I was in school and to also be doing it in a Gary Owen play is such a huge opportunity for me personally as I have grown up reading and seeing his plays.

Unfortunately, it was postponed because of the pandemic so who knows when we'll finally be able to do it, just got to keep all our fingers crossed!

What is your proudest professional accomplishment? 

The day I found out I got the role in It's A Sin is something I'll never forget. I was in my comprehensive school visiting my old teachers when I got the call which made it all the more special, they made such a fuss haha! How much better could it have been?! My Head of Sixth Form gave me the biggest hug.

After that, I drove straight to my house and told my parents and grandparents. We all started crying! It was the craziest couple of hours ever. It meant so much to me because I really wanted the role, and to be in a Russell T Davies drama is such an incredible honour.

I grew up watching Doctor Who and all his work after that. He really is a genius so to be able to play one of his characters in this show, and particularly a Welsh one, means the absolute world to me.

If you could change one thing about your career, what would it be?

I've just left drama school so at the moment, no regrets! But I'm ready for whatever gets thrown at me, I've wanted to act for most of my life in some capacity or other so I'm ready to work hard and knuckle down.

I understand that this industry is massively competitive and challenging at the best of times so I just want to always strive to do the best I can in every given opportunity.

What do you hope to achieve that you haven’t yet? 

There are so many directors and writers on stage and in television that I would love to work with whose work I admire so much.

I have always been in awe of whatever both Sally Cookson and Emma Rice have done respectively. A Monster Calls by Sally Cookson is a piece of theatre that I still think about to this day, it broke me and Wise Children by Emma Rice is one of my favourite pieces of theatre that I've seen onstage, it was magical.

I have also grown up loving anything by Armando Ianucci. The Thick of It and Death of Stalin remain two shows that sent me floor-ward in hysterics. I would absolutely love to work with him!

Outside of your family, who is / was your biggest inspiration?

My Drama teacher, Mrs Roblin, from school. Mrs Roblin was the person who sparked up a huge passion inside me for acting. She not only taught me what acting was but also what it required; hard work, talent and dedication. This for me, was vital, there was no buttering things up. She would always paint a realistic picture and for that I am so, so grateful.

It has really shaped the way I approach everything I do and I cannot thank her enough for that. I genuinely wouldn't be acting if it wasn't for her.

Tell us something nobody knows about you… 

When I was younger I was a compulsive liar. Between the ages 6-8 I used to tell all my friends that I was a Prince. I know. Wtf.

Style

What’s your favourite item of clothing – and what does it mean to you?

I have this woollen cardigan that I've had since I was 12 which still fits me to this day (must've been big on me when my parents bought it).

I think I want to keep it forever, it takes me back to when I was younger and all the memories I have. It also smells like old memories as well, I wash it don't get me wrong but for some reason the texture and smell of it is so nostalgic.

Favourite accessory – watch / jewellery / etc – and why is it special to you?

I have a ring with a dragon on it that I always wear out. It's mainly to always remind me of where I come from.

I'm really passionate about always knowing where your roots are. To always be grateful to the people that have helped you along the way. It's something that means a lot to me.

What items do you take on holiday and why?

All my bathers and all my baggy shirts. I love holiday clothes, it's another thing that reminds me of growing up.

My parents would always save up to try and go on a holiday once a year if we could so whenever we'd go I remember my mother bringing home really cool colourful bathers and shirts. It's something I still do now!

Is there an item you threw away – or lost – that you really miss? 

I had a favourite pair of jeans growing up that I would basically never take off. One day I came home from school to put them on and they weren't there, turns out my mother had sold them in a boot sale.

I still don't think I'm over it.

What’s next on your shopping list?

A new coat. My current one is a little ripped so I am currently on the hunt for a new one!

What would you buy if money was no object? 

Definitely everything from Vivienne Westwood. There's a shop in Cardiff that I would always walk past and that's how I fell in love with the brand. I've just never bought anything from there. One day... I hope.

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It's A Sin will premiere Friday 22nd January at 9pm on Channel 4

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