After appearing with Judi Dench in Skyfall, Ben Whishaw — who is James Bond’s newest Q — is currently starring in London again alongside Dench in Peter and Alice, a play by Skyfall co-writer John Logan about the real-life inspirations behind the titular characters in JM Barrie’s Peter Pan. In an interview with The Guardian, Whishaw speaks about being unsure about his craft and advice he received from someone concerned about the mental health of actors.
Though the thirty-two year old Whishaw started acting as a teenager, when it comes to acting Whishaw confesses that he feels he hasn’t quite figured it all out yet. He says, “I always feel I am in the dark. You are never finished… it is not as if you can look back and think: ah… I know what I am talking about. You are only as good as your last job and are always struggling and striving and you never quite get to where you want to be…”
In fact, one of the issues Whishaw says he faces as an actor is moving on from roles after playing a character for several weeks or months (and if he follows in the footsteps of Desmond Llewelyn, who played Q from 1963 to 1999, decades). Whishaw admits, “It can be a very strange feeling. I was in a bar having a drink the other day when this guy came up to me who was some sort of healer. I said I was an actor. And he said: ‘Ooh, I am very concerned about actors – you shouldn’t be going through those things because the body doesn’t know when something is real and when something isn’t.'”