Daniel Kaluuya: Brits to Watch

Actor/writer Daniel Kaluuya is one of BAFTA's 2011 Brits to Watch, an initiative showcasing new British talent to the international industry.

He’s starred in and written two Skins episodes and also appeared in Psychoville and Johnny English Reborn.

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Congrats on being selected as one of BAFTA’s Brits to Watch. What’s been your career highlight of the past year?

Erm, it would have to be a play I did at Royal Court called Sucker Punch by Roy Williams where I played a boxer. I trained for 6 months and lost 3 stone. We gave it everything and were so happy that it was so warmly received by critics, awards ceremonies and most importantly, the people.

What single piece of advice would you give to a young person trying to become a writer for television?

Work hard and follow your heart. Try and do as many classes, youth projects and workshops as possible. If you find out one thing that you'll carry with you for the rest of your life it was more than worth it.

How important is knowing people? Is raw talent enough?

Knowing people is handy but you don't want to be known for knowing people, you know? Knowing people gives you a platform, [but] you have to back it up with something in order to stay afloat. But I believe talent always breaks through. I don't get as excited about someone knowing the producer of Transformers 3 as I do if I see someone do something amazing in any field.

Which of your projects are you most proud of?

Skins, Sucker Punch and Psychoville.

What’s your worst habit for procrastinating when you’re meant to be working?

The internet. I get lost in a YouTube-related videos pit. 

How do you think the UK film/TV/games industries will change over the next few years?

I think the internet will play a much bigger role in everything and there will be a more personal relationship with the gamer audience. I hope there's more genre films and TV. That would be nice.

Give us some insider info (shhh): Who would you choose as your ‘Brit to Watch’ in the coming years?

Ummm there's so many… Jack O'Connell, Charles Mnene, Joe Dempsie, Aml Ameen, Iain De Caseketer, Lily Loveless, Imogen Poots, Ophelia Lovibond, Hannah Murray, Debbie Tucker Green, Ben Schiffer, Lucy Kirkwood, Al Campbell, Dawson Bros...These are all the people who have paid me promptly for a mention.

From left: Daniel in Sucker Punch and as Tealeaf in BBC comedy Psychoville

View Daniel's IMDb profile

 

Brits to Watch Portrait: BAFTA/ Barry J Holmes