The Night Caller star Robert Glenister on taking on ‘daunting role’ in new Channel 5 thriller

Virgin Radio

7 Jul 2024, 10:24

Robert Glenister

Credit: Getty

Robert Glenister has shared more details about his upcoming thriller series The Night Caller. 

The new Channel 5 show follows the story of taxi driver Tony (Glenister) as he becomes increasingly attached to a late-night radio host, played by Sean Pertwee. 

The official synopsis reads: "One day Tony plucks up the courage to ring Lawrence on-air and soon becomes a ‘friend of the show’ – for the first time in years, he feels listened to. But, as time passes, he starts to interpret Lawrence’s ‘worldview’ in dangerous ways.

"The relationship grows into an unhealthy obsession for Tony until he comes to the realisation that the real Lawrence isn’t the man he purports to be."

Glensiter, known for his roles in the drama series Huslte and spy drama Spooks, is no stranger to being front and centre but admitted he found this role particularly “daunting” to take on. 

He explained: “It was a bit daunting as a job because Tony is in every scene! But I also like the fact that the series starts as a thriller, and then becomes something far more involved, far more complicated and human. If the audience makes a decision about what the show is by the end of episode one, they should keep watching, because the chances are the series is not what they think it is.”

Speaking more about his character, Robert added: “He’s definitely angry, and there’s probably a bit of bitterness in there as well, because he was close to retirement, and now he has lost his vocation. At the start of the drama, we don’t know why he has lost his job, but he’s haunted by images and flashbacks that the viewer sees.

“We’ve taken a lot of care to make Tony an everyman figure, who just happens to have a series of unpleasant things happen to him, which makes him act the way he does. Tony has to be likeable and vulnerable, and hopefully, even though people won't condone what he does, they might understand why he does it.”

For Robert, Tony is a bit misunderstood and he can sympathise with his position as quite a lonely and isolated person. 

“It’s dangerous if you are in a vulnerable position like Tony is: he’s lonely, working nights and I can completely understand how you can develop a relationship with someone coming out of the radio in your car,” he concluded. 

“It’s a sounding board for Tony, it’s comforting and he uses Lawrence’s words as vindication, to justify some of his actions. You do get some quite extreme attitudes and opinions expressed on daytime phone-in shows, and I would imagine that at night it can be even more extreme.”

The Night Caller airs from 7th - 10th July at 9pm on Channel 5 & My5.