Lucy Boynton on working with Hugh Laurie in Why Didn’t They Ask Evans?: ‘He surpassed all expectations’

Virgin Radio

8 Apr 2022, 10:20

Actress Lucy Boynton stars in the new Agatha Christie adaptation, Why Didn’t They Ask Evans?, with Hugh Laurie at the helm both on and off screen. While appearing on The Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky, Lucy confirmed what we all know - that Hugh is one of the best when it comes to bringing characters to life. 

Lucy plays Lady Frances 'Frankie' Derwent in the period drama, alongside the likes of Will Poulter, Emma Thompson and Jim Broadbent. 

When it comes to writer, director and co-star Hugh, Lucy revealed that she jumped at the chance to work with the super talented star. 

She told Chris: “It's just a dream from beginning to end. I think as soon as you realise or read that Hugh Laurie's attached to something you know, it's guaranteed a certain level of quality, but then actually working with him kind of surpassed all expectations. He cares so much about everyone's experience and the characters themselves. So it was just beautiful.”

It was particularly special for Lucy, who was once told by Hugh why he had a personal interest in Frankie’s story. 

She continued: “He really comes at it from the centre rather than the outside in so he really knows the emotional track of the characters. And one of the first things he told me was that Frankie, my character, was his childhood crush.”

Why Didn’t They Ask Evans? relates to the last words from a victim of an apparent fall, and Bobby Jones, played by Poulter, and childhood friend Frankie attempt to decipher, and then answer, his final question, thus hitting upon a dark conspiracy of deceit and betrayal.

While close to working out the truth together, Lucy admitted the series also explores class divides within Frankie and Billy’s friendship.

Lucy added: “There's a definite class difference, which I think they weren't as aware of as kids. And now they're definitely being presented as adults because of societal expectations. But there's that shorthand as well of only really seeing each other as they used to know and then kind of, obviously, the encroaching pressures. 

“But as with all of Agatha Christie's characters, I always say they're always written with such crisp intelligence and emotional intelligence. So it's really rewarding.”

The Bohemian Rhapsody star has previously shared her love of Christie’s work, and recently starred as Countess Elena Andrenyi in Murder on the Orient Express. 

Speaking about why Agatha Christie remains one of the most beloved crime writers, Lucy explained: “She kind of created the genre as we know it. And that's what's beautiful about this project, I think, because you always feel very kind of comfortable in her world, but she's always 10 steps ahead of you.

“The characters are very witty and charismatic, and then suddenly it takes a sharp turn just when you think you'll settle. And the stakes are very high, and it becomes incredibly unnerving. And that's the joy of reading her books as well, and the blood kind of drains from your face.”

Why Didn't They Ask Evans? will be available to stream from Thursday 14th April on Britbox.

For more great interviews listen to  The Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky, weekdays from 6:30am on Virgin Radio, or  catch up on-demand here.