By Laura Harding, PA Deputy Entertainment Editor
Jack Whitehall has said he is “dogged by imposter syndrome” since he started working in Hollywood, adding he is “very aware that the wheels could come off at any moment”.
The comedian, who first found fame in British TV series such as Bad Education and Fresh Meat, recently starred opposite Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt in the Disney blockbuster Jungle Cruise and will next be seen in the family film Clifford The Big Red Dog.
However, he said his move to the big screen has not been without its concerns.
He told the PA news agency: “It’s great and I’m very lucky and feel so excited that I’m getting the opportunity to make movies like this and to have a sort of crack at Hollywood.
“But I’m also British, so I’m sort of dogged by imposter syndrome and very aware that the wheels could come off at any moment, and expect that it’s all going to dry up very soon and someone is going to come tap me on the shoulder and say, ‘No more films for you,’ and I’ll be back in England on Celebrity Juice having my nipples clamped and electrocuted by Keith Lemon or whatever happens to me after I stop making movies.”
Whitehall’s new film requires him to debut an American accent, which also provided a new set of challenges.
He said: “It’s difficult because you can prepare all of your lines, but you’ve got to improvise as well, so when you’re going off-piste you’re suddenly there without a safety net, and that I found quite challenging.
“And also, they made it as difficult as they could for me, they surrounded me by a load of other actors who were speaking in English accents, which was difficult.
“They also had this running joke that I was mocking them all the time, so I would have an American accent and then all of a sudden start imitating their English accents in my actual accent, and then go back into my fake American accent, which was used to cover the English accent that I actually have in real life.
“So it was a little bit of a tricky one to try and to get my head around.”
Whitehall has said he is hopeful sequels to both Jungle Cruise and Clifford The Big Red Dog will be imminent, but he is also keen to try his hand at other genres.
He said: “I think those are both in development now and they’re trying to write scripts for those two movies, and it would be great to be able to dip back into those worlds and the opportunity to work with those guys again, so that would be really fun.
“But outside of that, it would be nice to do something that’s a little different and maybe something that’s totally a little different to this family fare that I’ve been doing now for the last two movies, and to maybe try and find something completely different and go off and do an independent film where I play a serial killer or some Shakespeare…
— Jack Whitehall (@jackwhitehall) December 10, 2021
“Not Shakespeare, I shouldn’t do Shakespeare. I mean, if I do Shakespeare, everyone’s going to think that I have completely disappeared up my own arse, like I’m Daniel Craig, like, ‘I’ve done Bond now, I need to go and do Broadway’.
“Daniel Craig’s doing that because he’s a very respected actor and has done 10 years of movies, I’ve done two, I can’t just be like, ‘Right, I’m going to go and do Broadway and play Macbeth now’.
“So I think I’m maybe a couple of years off that. But it would be nice to do some more film roles and try and do some parts that are different and interesting and challenge me, and after that, then I’ll be ready to go and do my Shakespeare. But I need to not get ahead of myself.”
Clifford The Big Red Dog is out now in cinemas.