‘Dad would never criticise my work,’ says Sir Ben Kingsley’s actor son

Ferdinand Kingsley said his father has the DVD box set of Victoria.

Press Association
Last updated:22 August 2017 - 09.20am

Victoria actor Ferdinand Kingsley has admitted it was “weird” watching the drama with his father Sir Ben Kingsley – but said the Oscar-winning star would never criticise his work.

Ferdinand plays Francatelli in the hit programme about Queen Victoria, which is about to return for a second series.

He said his father is a big fan and that he has the box set on DVD.

He said: “He certainly wouldn’t criticise.

“Imagine him calling me up and going, ‘Love, you let yourself down in that scene’.

Ferdinand Kingsley
Ferdinand Kingsley (Ian West/PA)

“He watched them all and he loved them and we watched one or two together, which is weird because you’re half looking at him.

“But he’s just delighted I’m doing it for myself rather than trying to imitate or do a carbon copy of a career that’s ongoing.

“I think he likes to step back and go, you’re doing your thing and it’s marvellous.”

Ferdinand said he goes to Sir Ben, 73, for advice “to the same extent as anyone whose dad did the same job would go to them, just going, ‘Look when you were my age, what was tricky? What feels difficult now to when you were growing up?’”

He added: “Because it’s a completely different industry to when he was a young actor. He could spend, well you still could now but it’s much harder, seven years in a row in the same theatre without leaving and build from there and now it’s quite a rush for actors.

“There’s a pressure from all sorts of different angles that make actors feel like they’ve got to do something and be something otherwise they’ll be forgotten.”

Ferdinand said he thinks things have changed because there are so many actors and because television and film means everything is so quick now.

“In the old days, you could make some mistakes and learn from them and it’s harder to do that now because you’re so scrutinised so quickly,” he said. “I don’t think he envies us being younger actors now.”

:: The second series of Victoria returns to ITV on August 27.

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