Christopher Naylor talks Doctor Who and Bugs

Scifipulse recently caught up with Christopher Naylor. Who Big Finish fans know as Harry Sullivan's voice from Doctor Who Unbound.
Christopher

Scifipulse recently caught up with Christopher Naylor who Big Finish fans know as Harry Sullivan’s voice from Doctor Who Unbound. Additionally, Christopher has played roles in The Alienist, Warriors, S.W.A.T., and Bugs. Which he discusses here in this interview. Furthermore, Christopher is also an artist who has painted the cover for the 1st Doctor Adventures anthology The Demon Song. In this interview, Chris discusses his artistic influences as well as the changes in the film and TV industry.

 

SFP: What made you want to be an actor?

 

Christopher Naylor: I was glued to the TV for much of my childhood, and it always seemed to be full of the most exciting and interesting people I could imagine. Tom Baker‘s Doctor Who was at the centre of it all. Then I went to the pictures and saw Star Wars, then Superman and then Moonraker, and I gradually worked out that I could actually try and join in with the fun…

 

SFP: Do you think that the film and TV industry has changed since you started out?

 

Christopher Naylor: When I started out, the business seemed to be much like it had been for the past 40 years or so. Actors still went down the pub at lunchtime during rehearsals, people would gather on the fire escape to smoke before the show (and between scenes), and Channel 5 had only just launched. I don’t even think Sky was producing its own drama shows back then. The work landscape has changed radically now. Streaming has massively opened up work opportunities, casting is much more diverse than it was then, and everyone is considerably healthier than they used to be!

 

 

SFP: Would you say that BUGS was a forerunner of shows like Torchwood and Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD?

 

Christopher Naylor: BUGS was an eccentric little show, and it probably had aspirations to be far more epic than it actually was, but it was saddled with a BBC 90s Saturday teatime budget. I think it was attempting to fill the hole that Doctor Who had left, but without much in the way of a distinctive or appealing identity. My sole contribution was as some sort of computer technician, who was trying to extract a bullet from the brain of one of the leads. I got clubbed over the head with a rubber gun by someone from Footballer’s Wives, as I recall.

 

SFP: How does voice acting differ from film and TV acting?

 

Christopher Naylor: Voice acting is very playful and fun, and usually a very sociable day, especially now that we’re back in the studio again, post-COVID. As far as the work is concerned, my approach doesn’t really differ very much from any other sort of job – it’s all about the script. I always work hard on the words before recording, to make sure I’m helping to tell the story . After that, it becomes about the interplay between the actors in the room – that’s always the best bit.

 

SFP: Please can you tell us a little about your role in Once and Future, the 8-part Big Finish Doctor Who 60th-anniversary story?

 

Christopher Naylor: Hmmm… I value my work with Big Finish too much to let on – but it’s wonderful to be involved in the Doctor’s 60th year celebrations, and I think people will love what we have in store. Harry, as usual, gets in slightly too deep, and finds himself in the company of rather an eclectic bunch… That’s probably as much as I can tell you!

 

SFP: What would you say is the most important skill an actor can have?

 

Christopher Naylor: I think the most important thing of all is listening. You need to put your focus on the other actor in the scene, not on yourself, then it becomes about reacting to what’s happening, and being present in the scene. And the only reason anyone is there is to tell the story.

 

SFP: You’re also an artist. Who would you say are your biggest influences?

 

Christopher Naylor: I’ve always been a scribbler since I can remember. I love illustrators like EH Shepard – the genius who drew the Winnie-The-Pooh books – and Ronald Searle, of course. People should seek out the (Nigel) Molesworth books! (Henri de)Toulouse-Lautrec‘s work is thrilling, I love J W Waterhouse, and I’m always stunned by (Hans) Holbein, particularly his incredible drawings of the Tudor court. Far more interesting than Instagram.

 

SFP: And finally, what 4 Doctor Who characters would you want in your escape room team?

 

Christopher Naylor: Excellent question! Let’s face it, K9 could probably do it all on his own, but let’s add in Romana (in either version), Sarah Jane (because she’d never give up), Sentreal could probably just smash the walls down, but is also liable to kill everyone, so maybe not him… Oh, and let’s have old Harry in there. He might be a bit chaotic at times, but he’s a solid fellow to have by your side in a crisis.

 

 

Scifipulse would like to extend our most heartfelt thanks and warmest best wishes to Christopher Naylor for so graciously taking the time to answer our questions.

 

Christopher’s Twitter: @cnayloractor

 

Check out our Lauren Bancroft interview here

 

Check out our Travis Richey interview here

Autistic citizen journalist for Scifipulse. Aspiring writer, cosplayer and actor. Capable of morphing.
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