Photography by Mr AJ Numan | Styling by Mr Tony Cook
Words by Mr Alex Godfrey
"That's the shot right there," says Mr Treadaway, surveying photos on a computer screen with the photographer. It's 5pm, the shoot is nearly over, and Mr Treadaway likes the photographs in which he's balancing an umbrella on his finger. He's unsurprisingly comfortable in front of the camera, having got his big break at 21 when, still in drama school, he and his twin brother, Mr Harry Treadaway, were cast as conjoined twins in the movie Brothers of the Head. Since then he's played a deranged cult leader in last year's Clash of the Titans and posh stoner Brewis in Mr Joe Cornish's fantastic Attack the Block. He's currently in You Instead, a romance set at a Scottish music festival, which is out now. Mr Treadaway grew up in Devon, in the rural West of England, and so is eminently qualified to demonstrate the best five ways to wear mid-season jackets.
You looked as if you were having a blast at our shoot.
It was fun. I wore a few clothes I would happily take home.
Do you take clothes home from the films you're in?
Yeah. So much. It becomes a bit ridiculous, I used to take home the whole lot, but then I realised that everything I put on reminded me of a different job and it was a bit weird. So I've chilled out on that front.
And does it run the other way - do you influence the way your characters dress?
In Attack the Block Brewis originally was going to dress in ghetto wear, if that's an acceptable term. But for rehearsals I kept wearing waxed jackets, things you see well-off kids walking around in, like they've just stepped out of a Land Rover. Brewis was based on Joe [Cornish, the film's director].
Were you surprised that a film that's set in South London has done well in America?
Maybe that distance affords you the ability to laugh a bit more - maybe it's a bit too close to home in the UK. I think some people thought all the dialogue was supposed to be serious, and on one hand it is, but the film also plays with the language that young people in London use. There's such verbal gymnastics going on, it's funny, it's brilliant, it's alive and it's full of humour - I think the film captured that really well.
I know you've written songs for some of your films and have been in bands for years - when did that start?
We were very young, playing village halls and supporting local bands. I love music - you have creative control over it, when as an actor you're always interpreting someone else's ideas. I've just started putting a new band together and we will start playing shows soon, hopefully. We have a double bass and a violin player so far.
When you were a teenager in bands how did you dress?
I was quite eccentric for a young lad growing up in Devon. As a kid I went to the supermarket dressed as the Pied Piper and Peter Pan, using clothes from my dressing up box as if it was a wardrobe. Then as a teenager I wore lots of baggy jeans - our band wanted to be like Bush.
How was it to work on a huge production like Clash of the Titans?
Ten seconds of Clash of the Titans would probably fund entire films I've done! I really enjoyed the whole experience; I lost two stone and grew this huge beard and had this quite monastic existence because for about two months before I was hardly eating, but running every day. I wanted to look as if I was near death, as the script said my character was.
What did that do to your mental state?
It's probably not a very healthy thing to do, but it was a sunny London summer and I ran in the morning and read about Greek mythology all afternoon and I really enjoyed it. I wanted to put my all into it, to feel as if I had some inner belief, because otherwise I'd have been daunted by these huge sets. It made me feel confident in what I was doing.