Steven Mackintosh talks about playing Alistair Winter on Stan Lee's Lucky Man. The show can be see on Friday nights at 9pm on Sky 1 from January 22nd.
How would you describe the story of Stan Lee’s Lucky Man?
I would first and foremost describe it as a London crime thriller but with an unexpected twist. In terms of the overall plot, there is a long-form crime story that runs from episode one to ten and also smaller episodic stories. Harry Clayton is the detective at the heart of the it who is investigating a series of murders that may or may not be linked. Harry is a flawed character in a lot of ways; he is a great detective but there are some chaotic issues within his life.
What were your initial thoughts reading the scripts?
When I first read it, I just wanted to keep reading – it was exciting and I wanted to know what happened. I was intrigued by the crime story, I wanted to know where that was going, and the surprising element of the lucky charm was something that I hadn’t seen before. Especially within the context of a crime story it felt very different. It’s not a superhero story as such, but it has an otherworldly, mystical and supernatural element to it and that’s a combination I was intrigued by.
How does your character fit into the story?
I play Harry Clayton’s boss, Detective Superintendent Winter, who is the head of the Murder Investigation Squad in London. Harry and Winter have a chequered history having worked together in the past but this is the first time that Winter has been his boss. He is a man of faith and I think that’s part of what drives him and what makes him who he is. It certainly influences his work, keeps him on the straight and narrow and saves him from being too readily influenced by any feelings of revenge he may hold towards Harry. He’s got an agenda to shape up MIS and bring in a new energy, a new regime and is determined to create a clean, straight police force. Winter always has his eye on Harry, though, keeping him in check.
Your character certainly does seem to have an agenda when it comes to Harry Clayton. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
In the past there was a situation in which a direct decision made by Harry resulted in Winter getting injured. This has stayed with Winter for a number of years. He blames Harry for the past choices he made and Winter is carrying it with him at the beginning of the story. He is, however, a fair and balanced man and he’s able to see things with clarity, he’s not approaching this job with the sole purpose of getting his revenge on Harry. But he does feel Harry gets himself into difficult situations and doesn’t play by the rules and Winter doesn’t like that.
How would you like the audience to react to the show?
I would like the audience to be surprised and intrigued by it in the same way that I was when I first read it. This has something that sets it apart from most crime dramas and I hope the audience will respond to that. It has excitement, fantastic action sequences and it’s going to make London look like the incredibly exciting, international city that it is.
While filming, how much advance information did you have about your character arc from episode one to ten?
I had a good sense of my character from the beginning of the project. Where we’re at in terms of Winter and Harry’s past, what’s brought us to now and where it may go after the first few episodes. But I didn’t know fully all the ins and outs of the story, especially the last two scripts.
Stan Lee’s Lucky Man deals with the concept of luck. What are your personal feelings on luck?
It’s a powerful force. It’s an enigma. It’s something that we can’t control. And that’s what’s interesting about this.
What if there could be an object that could somehow harness that power?
All of us at some point ponder how a sequence of events could have turned out differently if we could have controlled the outcome. This show and the concepts it throws up for discussion definitely tap into something that we can all relate to.