Friday 19 January 2018

Naomie Harris plays teacher

Naomie Harris plays a teacher in her new film
Naomie Harris plays a teacher in her new film

Naomie Harris has revealed how she became a real teacher at a school in Kenya for her new film The First Grader.

The Pirates Of The Caribbean star plays head teacher Jane in the true story of village elder and former Mau-Mau fighter Maruge - played by Oliver Litondo in the film - who decided at the age of 84 that he wanted to learn to read and write.

Naomie explained: "It was amazing - I was brought in two weeks before we started filming, I was introduced as teacher Jane, not as Naomie, they don't know me as Naomie the actress."

She went on: "I had to learn a Kenyan accent, learn some key Swahili to be able to communicate with the kids as well and also come up with lesson plans for them. So I was Skyping my step-dad, who is a teacher, most nights saying, 'What do I do? What do I teach them? I don't know.'"

The 34-year-old actress admitted the children didn't concentrate on her lessons at first, but once she got the hang of teaching they were very well-behaved."

She confessed at the film's premiere at the BFI London Film Festival: "I was a terrible teacher to begin with, really bad. I couldn't keep their attention at all - they were really bored - but I managed to get there in the end. It was such a great feeling to be able to have them on side.

"They're amazing children. They were super well-behaved."

The film, made on location in a real Kenyan school, was directed by The Other Boleyn Girl's Justin Chadwick who revealed he and the camera man were also introduced to the children as teachers in the classroom.

Press Association

Promoted Links

Entertainment Newsletter

Going out? Staying in? From great gigs to film reviews and listings, entertainment has you covered.

Promoted Links

Editors Choice

Also in Entertainment