Jimmy Akingbola kindly gives his first interview with holby.tv during his time on HOLBY CITY as popular Malick…
You joined HOLBY CITY at the beginning of the year, how are you enjoying your time on the show so far?
I am loving it on HOLBY CITY. The cast and crew are amazing and have been very supportive. They made it easy for me to enter the show and it helped me settle in quckly. I feel very lucky because HOLBY CITY is flying at the moment! The whole programme has upgraded and we have some amazing writers, producers and directors.
Fans have really warmed to Malick, being such a 3 dimensional strong character, he must be a fantastic character to play?
Thank you, that’s good to hear! Yes, Malick is just a dream role. When I auditioned for the part I knew instantly that I could do so much with the character. What’s great is that I am nothing like him plus the part is stretching me as an actor. I love being a top surgeon who’s cheeky and has a lot of confidence and attitude.
How would you describe Malick’s personality? Can you relate to him in any way?
He is an amazing character with lots of layers. He is a very talented doctor, a maverick and wants to be a consultant. So he is very driven. He charges towards his ambition and success like a bull chasing a red rag. What I love about Malick is that his patients come first and he will not play the game. People don’t really understand Malick and yet he finds it hard to let people get close enough to understand him. He has a soft inner, if you can reach it. With Malick it’s all about tough love. I can relate to Malick in one way and that is his work ethic: he has worked very hard to get where he is and will never forget who he is, or where he comes from, and he will be the best he can be.
We’ve seen Malick to have an aggressive streak, what do you think motivates his anger?
Yes he has a bit of a temper but I think part of that is frustration and him being impatient. He wants to be a consultant now! And it’s easy to call him aggresive but each time you see that side of him it’s normally for a valid reason. When we first saw Malick he was in trouble because he hit a consultant that was letting a patient die. He roughed up a policeman to save Michael Spence. We saw him get angry because an old lady was being racist. And Dan was the first person to throw a punch, not Mailck. Also I think part of his aggression is due to things he has been through in the past…but I can’t tell you what that is so keep watching.
Your recent storyline has involved Malick and Dan, are you pleased to have been involved in such a challenging storyline?
Yes I love this storyline, in fact all of Malick’s storylines have been brilliant since I started. As an actor you always want to have interesting and challenging storylines. One of my two favourites was the story about the wife beater and the story about the drug addict women who kept having kids.
The BBC were recently forced to defend scenes that involved your character’s gay kiss. What views do you have on this?
We are trying to provide a drama that reflects real life and challenges people’s perceptions. Things like that happen and I like the complexity of the characters. And the fact that no one saw it coming is great. That’s what you call a twist!
How do you think Dan will come to terms with his sexuality? Will Malick be able to step back on seeing Dan use Chrissie?
I’m not sure how Dan will get through it but Malick is in a funny place because he is involved and doesn’t want to hurt his best friend Chrissie so he can’t say or do anything.
What have been some of your most memorable ‘Malick’ one-liners?
Wow, there have been so many that I have loved and people say back to me – Fix Up Look Sharp, Are your ears for fashion, Oh Lord a Mercy, You do not want to lose The Malick! Dr Hamilton’s all bone? I want seasoned meat?…can’t remember them all, lol. What are your favourites?
What are the rest of the Holby cast like to work with?
All the Holby cast are superb! We have that nice balance of having lots of fun but get loads of work done at the same time. I worked a lot with Hari Dhillon, aka Michael Spence, when I first joined and he is such a joker on set – we have too much fun! Guy Henry, aka Mr Hannsen, is also a big joker. I’m hoping Malick and Jac cross paths.
You’ve had a varied acting career. What would you consider to be some of the highlights of your career so far?
My highlights go in this order (Anansi – Film 2001) (The Crouches – BBC1 2003) (Blue Orange by Joe Penahll – Theatre 2005 I won TMA Best Supportting Actor) (The Cut by Mark Ravenhill 2006) (Holby Blue – BBC1 2006) (Othello – Theatre 2008) (Bafta Winning Rev – BBC2 2010) and then HOLBY CITY of course… to be continued…
Who or what inspired you to become an actor? Who are your favourite actors/ actresses?
Theatre Royal Stratford East and a theatre company called The Posse starring 8 actors including Robbie Gee and Gary Macdonald inspired me to become a actor. Plus my drama teacher at Cumberland School, Mr Tyres. My Favourite actors are Robbie Gee, Angela Bassett, Kathy Burke, Ray Winston, Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Denzel Washington, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Will Ferrell, Cate Blanchett.
Do you have any acting ambitions left to fulfil?
Yes I want to do more films and I would like to work in NY on broadway and in LA doing TV and Film.
You’re an avid user of Twitter, what feedback do you get from fans?
I wouldn’t say I’m a avid user lol!! But yeah I use it a bit and the feedback has been so lovely. First I got alot of people saying I’m not sure about Malick or I don’t like him. Now everyone seems to have grown to love Malick. They love his one liners…And since my coming out of the shower with just a towel scene I have had some very funny and saucy tweets…..There is even a day dedicated to Malick on twitter which was created by one of my followers, Mr Malick Fans. Mondays are now called Malick Mondays you go on twitter on a monday and you will see that being ReTweeted a few times.