`

Bodyguard actor returns to home to inspire college students

Richard with East Durham College media lecturer Suzi Martin.
Richard with East Durham College media lecturer Suzi Martin.

College students were thrilled to meet Bodyguard actor Richard Riddell when he returned home to inspire those looking to break into the industry.

The Ryhope star who appeared in the smash-hit BBC drama, took part in a Q&A at East Durham College on Friday, October 5.

Bodyguard actor Richard Riddell.

Bodyguard actor Richard Riddell.

Richard played Tom Fenton, a detective who works alongside lead actor Richard Madden’s David Budd.

In the past, Richard has also had roles in Star Wars: The Force Awakens as a First Order Officer and in E4’s popular superpowered drama Misfits.

When hearing that Richard was returning to the North East, East Durham College thought it would be a great opportunity for our talented creative industries students to see how far they can go in acting by having Richard come in to talk with them.

Richard spent around half an hour with students from East Durham College for the Q & A, which took place in the college’s Lubetkin theatre.

Students had many questions for the actor, ranging from his favourite and least favourite roles to how he got his start in the acting business.

Richard had some advice for students who may want to get into acting.

He said: “I would say, if acting is something you really want to do you absolutely have to go for it.

"As I said in the talk, it’s just remembering that there will be a lot of rejections and you shouldn’t be deterred by that.

"You should remember that you still have value and you’ve got to go for it.

“It sounds quite generic – but that’s one of the most important things to remember!

"You do have a lot to give, but also, you never know until you try it!”

Over the course of its run, Bodyguard captivated people across the country as an average audience of 8 million people tackled with the twists and turns of the
programme.

Bodyguard also starred another local star – and former East Durham College A level student - Gina McKee, who played Commander Anne Sampson in the gripping
drama.

In the near future Richard will also be appearing in Morse prequel Endeavour and in Sky Atlantic’s dystopian thriller Curfew, starring alongside Sean Bean and Miranda Richardson.