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Interview with Matthew Widdowson

Matthew Widdowson is an actor and director, known for Captive Resistance (2020), Don't Tell (2020) and 13th Day of Christmas (2021).


Matthew Widdowson, thank you for this interview. My readers will not know you. Can you please provide details about yourself. Movies, profession, etc. 


First of all, thanks for the opportunity to do this interview, it’s a genuine pleasure. Ok, where to start? I’ve always been a keen actor and performer but really, I see myself as a writer, and on occasions a reluctant Director. I qualified with a G.N.V.Q. Distinction in performing art and A Level Theatre Studies. 

I’ve been involved in dozens of theatre performances and several film projects. In 2014 I founded Jacobite Productions and over the last 8 years or so, We have produced 6 stage shows, one Radio Drama, several short movie projects, one mini-series and now, 2 Feature films called ‘Don’t Tell’ which is free to view on YouTube now and of course, ‘13th Day of Christmas’ which is due for release on Prime in December.

Jacobite Productions now has two separately run arms. Our Media and Film branch and our Theatre and performing arts branch, which is the aspect that I am most involved with.


Ld. Widdowson, your most recently finished Deadly Trio .  Can you talk about the story?  Also, what platforms can people view your film online?

Deadly Trio is a movie by the fantastic film-maker Sammie Lei, whom I have a lot of respect for and just love working with. Originally Sammie and I discussed the opportunity of me playing one of the main characters in the film, but my commitments to other projects, and other factors, meant it wasn’t really possible. So I was absolutely delighted to be able to feature in the movie in a small way. So last week, I was asked to film a single scene opposite Lottie Hanson (Whom I adore working with on any project) in which I play a total bastard ha ha. I won’t give anything away, but it’s a great production and audiences will be really moved by it as well as thoroughly entertained.



Ld. Widdowson, everyone has a story to tell. What one story do you wish everyone knew about you?

I’m quite an open person, which I’m sure most people actually detest about me. I’m not a publicity hog or anything, I don’t crave the spotlight, I just kind of do what I do and if people like me or are entertained by me then great. I suppose I could answer with facts about me that I’m proud of or maybe could be said define me? First off, your readers need to know that I’m dangerously charismatic and good looking ha ha …. But seriously, Vegan, I’m a full on animal rights, human rights and environmental campaigner and advocate. I see myself as a pacifist and am staunchly against violence where possible. I think I see myself as a Christian although I am not a fan or organised religious groups. If people ask me what makes me a good actor, I tell them I’m not a good actor I’m just louder than every other actor on the planet, and that’s probably accurate.



Ld. Widdowson, the film 13th Day of Christmas  will be released soon.  Can you talk about the movie and provide links to it?


This is the best film project I have been involved with. I was delighted when I read the script almost 2 years ago and originally, I wanted to Direct it as a stage show. Writer, Dan Brothers, and I discussed at great length, the changes need to make it for screen and eventually we agreed on a final version and began work. We put a super team together.

Dan Brothers continued to write the story and develop characters all the way through the rehearsal and production process. This was instrumental in keeping the film fresh and dynamic. Originally I was Directing only, but our lead cast member pulled out and I was left playing the lead role of Detective Inspector Jennings, I’m not moaning ha ha. My 1st AD was Charlotte Rose Howley, a very talented and bright actor who will go on to much bigger and better things. Charlotte was instrumental, especially early on in ensuring the quality of the cast and the sets/locations we were filming at, and her creative input was invaluable. DOP and Editor Ferris Bibby had to double up as my Co-Director, once I was playing the lead, and again this made the process so much better. All I’ll say about the film itself is this, 13th Day of Christmas is the most tense and intense phycological Christmas killer thriller ever made. So many twists that your readers may lose their minds.  The cast is the best cast I’ve worked with and the film is shot and edited to perfection. The icing on the cake is the excellent, haunting soundtrack provided by the best musician I’ve ever met, Lottie Hanson. My advice is go the cinema to watch it and then wait eagerly for the release on Amazon Prime. All details can be found on the Jacobite Productions Facebook page and Instagram account www.facebook.com/jacobiteproductions 


Ld. Widdowson, what book or movies have you been reading or watching? Meaning I am using this interview to find new books or films to watch. What have you been doing?

I’m currently back on Dickens, reading Nicholas Nickleby. I love Charles Dickens, but even the most enthusiastic reader of books would admit he’s a bloody difficult read. Film wise, I haven’t watched a new movie in some time that excites me or had a good story. The mainstream movie industry has sacrificed story and actors for action and body builders, or at best, ineptly making remakes of classic movies. The quality of the film industry has been damaged irreparably IMO due to the screening of actors who don’t meet the physical blue print of a modern actor. By that I mean, we’ve lost quality on our screens because actors such as Chevy Chase, John Candy, Bill Murry, Richard Burton, Kenneth Branagh etc. would bever have a chance to make a name for themselves, coming out of drama school in 2021. So instead we lumbered with Body Builders and Size Zero models making out films! 


Ld. Widdowson, can you talk about your other work in production?  Are you planning to try any film festivals or are they going to be directly released?

We have two movies on their way in 2022, Legacy, written by Dan Brothers is a gritty modern day gangster extravaganza. 

Escape The Night (currently in production) is a proper teen scream and will I believe will be a proper gem of a movie. 

In addition to this we’ll be on stage throughout 2022, treading the boards with new productions and making our audiences laugh, cry and long for death. 

Ld. Widdowson, what are you doing to relieve stress during this time of home lockdown?

Well I recently gave up smoking cigarettes for the billionth time, so stress is foremost on my mind ha ha. Reading, working on productions, taking lots of walks and spending time with the people I love.

Dreams: what project or script or actor or actress would be a dream for you to get to work with?

Great question, and I imagine you get so many different answers to this. 

Dream roles? I love playing most roles, but the more challenging the better. I have always preferred theatre acting to film acting because I find it more challenging. I also love Radio acting as you can really use your voice to convey emotion and feeling, which I enjoy.

I’d love to play Doctor Who (or any role in the show) and of course James Bond, although they’d never give the role to someone like me.

I also love being killed and/or dying, so anything where I get to be a martyr would be great. If I could act alongside anyone? Well, I firmly believe the two greatest living actors are Tom Hanks and David Tennant, what an honour it’s be to play opposite either one. Growing up, two of my heroes were the comedians Trev & Simon (Simon Hickson and Trevor Neal. One day I would be ecstatic to have the opportunity to Direct them in a movie or other, maybe one day.


Ld. Widdowson, the classic question: what charity do you work with and can you provide a link to it so others can see too please.

Animals in Need

Animals In Need – Northamptonshire – Dedicated to rescuing sick, injured, trapped and distressed wild and domestic animals. (animals-in-need.org)

Wicksteed Park

Wicksteed Park - Theme Park in Kettering, Northamptonshire.


A final question. What question do you wish I had asked?  And what would the answer be?

I suppose I do like to give shout outs to creative people I’ve worked with, or people who have supported Jacobite Productions, I’d hate for people to think I’m ungrateful or that I don’t appreciate their talents. But then I suppose I’d be left with dilemma of who to mention and who to miss out. 

I can’t not mention Chloe Barratt who is a 10/10 singer and actor. As my wife in the Whitechapel Murders, had the pleasure of slapping me across the face so hard that I went deaf for a week.

Adele Steward who played her first ever leading role in October this year at the age of 15 and was just sensational and inspirational. Both Adele and her sister Sophie are two of the finest performers I think I’ll ever work with.


And I suppose I’d like to have the chance to encourage everyone to support Jacobite Productions, and the arts in general. Follow us on Instagram and Facebook, get in touch, join in and be part of something special.


Lastly, remember that the single greatest reason for climate change is the non-vegan diet. Reducing fossil fuels, plastics and vehicle emissions is drop in the ocean compared the damage caused by the flesh and dairy industry. The planet goes vegan for 6 months and global warming ends, just like that. When you take your recycling out, you do 1% good. When you go back inside and put milk in your tea and eat a dead animal, you do 99% bad. Be kind to each other and everyone we share the Earth with.