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Les Miserables on BBC: Javert actor reveals what sets the BBC drama apart | TV & Radio | Showbiz & TV

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Les Miserables will see a number of plot points arise this evening as Javert (played by David Oyelowo) will continue to venture after Jean Valjean (Dominic West).

Javert is the French officer who has dedicated his life to the law and justice.

However when he realises a former convict, Jean Valjean, has slipped through the cracks of the system, becomes obsessed with tracking him down.

Speaking to press including Express.co.uk, David spoke about what sets the BBC’s version of Les Misérables’ Javert apart from other renditions of the story.

He explained: “I’ve seen over the years other depictions of Javert and he’s always played posh.

“I actually think that's incredibly lazy because he’s not - as you see, and as [Victor Hugo, the author] clearly states.

“He [Javert] was born in prison. He is working class, he is a prison guard - he works his way up a hierarchy within that society, and that is part of what Hugo is talking about, a class system, in a sense.”

However David went on to defend the former actors who played Javert, as he added: “Not to denigrate anyone who has played him before.

“But I think that we are doing something period, and so therefore it is that - but actually Hugo is doing something way more complex than that.

“What he is really looking at is the underclass, the upper class, and the lack of a middle class.

“We have to speak to that with everything at our disposal. That dirt was ingrained and real, the production design was phenomenal.”

David’s comments on Javert’s character follow his continuous praise for the script.

He recently voiced his concern about the part when he was originally offered it.

David said: “My immediate thought was: ‘Oh, do I want to play the villain?’

“Only because the iteration I had seen was more primary colours.”

David could have been referring to 2012’s film adaptation of the Les Misérables musical, in which Russell Crowe played Javert.

David continued: “I knew it was a mini series and I thought that is going to get tired over six episodes.

“But I read the script and there was all this layering there that I was unaware of.”

He later went on to praise writer Andrew Davies on his adaptation of the novel into six episodes.

Les Miserables continues tonight at 9pm on BBC One.


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