Danny And The Human Zoo - Film Premiere - Q And A

As though getting to be up close and personal with the celebrities on the red carpet wasn't exciting enough, we also had the opportunity to receive a first look at the film Danny and the Human Zoo, to be aired on the August bank holiday weekend. Don't worry, I won't put any spoilers in the blog, as I think it's a film that a lot of people will want to watch and enjoy for themselves! But what I will tell you, is that the film is a 'fictional memoir' about writer and actor Sir Lenny Henry's life growing up in Dudley.

The character of Danny in the film is played by up and coming actor Kascion Franklin who was really good in the role, especially considering this was his first major film. But whilst Kascion is new to the scene, there were some familiar faces in the film including James and Oliver Phelps who played the Weasley twins in the Harry Potter franchise. Along with Evanna Lynch who was also excellent in Danny and the Human Zoo, playing Danny's girlfriend, and who was also in Harry Potter playing Luna Lovegood, Harry's school friend. The film itself took a really authentic look back at Dudley in the 70's, when the afros were big and the flares were wide. There were loads of people at the screening actually from the Dudley area, and I could hear them enjoying the recognition during the different scenes of the film. I can also say there were moments of hilarity within the film, along with quite poignant emotional moments. All of which were a credit to the Director of the film Destiny Ekaragha.

Sir Lenny Henry
There was a massive round of applause when the film finished, marking the start of the question and answer session with Lenny, Kascion and Destiny. There were some really good questions from the audience put to the team, beginning with a question to Kascion on what it was like to play a young Sir Lenny, when he was the writer and/ playing his own father. Kascion said that Lenny gave him the artistic freedom he needed to approach the role and character as he wanted to. Which in my opinion was the right thing to do, because he brought an already interesting character truly to life. The same question was put to Destiny, the film's director, to which she responded that she knew Danny and the Human Zoo was a film she could bring to screen. As soon as she read the script Destiny apparently felt that she could imagine how it would look already. That she'd grown up watching Lenny Henry and although her identity is Nigerian opposed to Jamaican like Lenny's, there were just so many cultural similarities that she could relate to.

Left to Right - Adrian Goldberg, Kascion Franklin and Sir Lenny Henry

Another question from the audience was to ask what was the most enjoyable part of making Danny and the Human Zoo. Destiny mentioned that it never felt like going to work due to the great atmosphere on set and the great relationship between cast and crew. Whilst Lenny appeared to enjoy the whole process and Kascion enjoyed the experience of being involved in his first film. One thing that Sir Lenny said that really resonated with me, was that despite his lengthly career this was the first time that he had worked with a black director. Which may have been one of the many things that helped build such a great rapport between the two. Destiny noted that she had a special connection with the character of Murtle who plays young Danny's Mum, because she was so similar to her own Mum. Having Jamaican heritage myself, with my own father having made the journey from Jamaica in the 70's to come to live in Britain, it's not hard to imagine that the story of Danny and the Human Zoo is one that will resonate with so many people. But I hope it will be enjoyed by all when it airs on the 31st August on BBC One.


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My blog takes you through a daily look at sport, diabetes and everything in between. As an athlete that lives with type 1 diabetes I want to let you into news, views and all that is important to both of my passions.

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