New Sky series Django, is loosely inspired by the cult classic Western, Italian Spaghetti (1966).
While searching for his daughter, Django comes upon New Babylon. Here, Django discovers that his daughter is alive and set to marry John Ellis, the founder of New Babylon. Sarah – who blames her father for the death of their family, massacred many years earlier while he was at war – wants Django to leave. But he refuses to give up and does everything in his power to get a second chance with her.
We spoke to actor Eric Kole who plays Phillip Ellis …
Please introduce yourself …
My name is Eric Kole, of Malawian heritage. I am an actor and I play Phillip Ellis in the Django TV series.
It’s a western! I get to say “I’m in a western” – it’s a genre firmly cemented within the legacy of the moving image, and I get to play inside that milieu. I had to say yes!
Tell us about your Phillip and what his goal is in DJango …
Phillip Ellis is one of John Ellis’ sons. He’s a character that tries to live up to the responsibilities bestowed upon him as Sheriff of New Babylon, but is rarely afforded the authority to do so. He often finds himself treading lightly between obedience and initiative, but neither side seems greener than the other.
Tell us about working with your fellow cast …
It was great working with the rest of the cast. I also got to learn a great deal, just working and watching Nicholas (Pinnock) do his thing. I really enjoyed the dynamic with the brothers (Jyuddah and Benny) too, we were cast in age order which I think made it easier to get a brotherly dynamic between us.
What was it about the script that made you say, “Yes, I want to be a part of this”?
I remember the scene I auditioned with had a lot of conflict between Phillip and one of the brothers, whilst maintaining an aspect of brotherly love. It felt really rich and complex, and I remember thinking I’d be well up
for more of that.
What does the story of Django mean to you personally?
To me the story of Django means learning to live with the changes we’ve been through.
Tell us a memorable moment on set?
Heading back to the accommodation at 5am after a night shoot, and watching the sunrise along the Transylvanian hills – beautiful!
Which character best defines what you love about this project?
I think Django sums up a lot of what the characters in this show go through. There’s a contrast between who he wants to be, and who he really is. A contrast reflected in Phillip too, and defines his journey, as well as the journey of a few other characters in the show.
What’s next for you?
I’ve recently finished work on a WWII era TV series. I’m also currently in post-production for a drama/sci-fi short film, which I’ve written and directed – The First Time I Never Met You. It’s a time-travel story that touches on themes of grief, love, and loss.
How do we keep up to date with you and your work [socials]?
You can stay updated with my work via my site www.EricKole.co.uk. I’m also on Instagram, Youtube, TikTok and Twitter: @Eric_Kole, and on facebook @MrEricKole.
Django is available to watch weekly on Sky Atlantic with NOW from 1st March.