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Him and Her: A chat with Camille Coduri

It’s always a joy to have a blether with the lovely Camille Coduri, so we caught up with her to find out about the second series of Him and Her, which is back on BBC Three…

For those who haven’t seen Him and Her, what’s it all about?

It’s basically a love story. A modern day love story, I think. About a couple that are falling in love. It’s a look into their lives and the people who live around them, their mates. I can’t speak with these things in. The sister, their neighbour. People that infiltrate in their lives. So yeah, it’s basically a love story.

Your character Shelley, tell us about her.

She’s much older than the rest of them. She’s been around a bit. She’s havnging around with them because she’s looking for a family, really. She wants to be young. I love Shelly, she’s just vulnerable, extremely vulnerable. And I think in this series she’s just bullied by her best friend Laura, played by Kerry Howard. Shelley is gorgeous. She’s a lovely woman hanging out with these youngsters. And she shouldn’t really be there, but she’s looking for, she’s just trying to fit in, really.

And how much of you is in Shelley?

How much of me is in Shelley? None of me.

None at all?

No not really, my body, but that’s about it. Of course I’m like her, because of her vulnerability, because we’re all vulnerable. But I’ve not been bullied and I’m a great mum. And I think she’s a very loving mother because she has a small son, but I think she’s a bit neglectful because she’s always out with them and not with her son. We’re quite different.

We know you’ve done some comedic roles in the past, but recently, with Ashes to Ashes and Honest, they’re quite serious, so how does it feel for you to be doing and out and out comedy role?

Comedy sits very comfortably with me. I’ve always been at home with it. When I started off, at the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith, we did a play which was improvised with Terry Brown, the writer who wrote it, and it was called Made in Spain, and that was one of my first things that I did when I was about 19, 20. And that was funny. So it’s always sat comfortably with me, and I always thought I would fall into those roles, but I haven’t. I’ve always done quite dramatic roles, so it’s been quite interesting to see.

Working with Russell Tovey, who’s got a bit of a gay fan base, and did Doctor Who, as you did. Did you share any Who anecdotes together?

No. Of course we touched base. And I love that boy, I think he’s a genius, talented god. And he makes me laugh out loud and bellow. He’s just beautiful to watch when he works, he’s incredible. And of course we touched base about Dr Who saying I think Russell T Davies is amazing. So we spoke on it, we touched on it. And when we were back on Him and Her, and what was going on there.

He’s quite prevalent on Twitter, have you thought about joining up?

My son wants me to Twit, but I’ve said I’m far too old. It’s a young person’s game, I’m far too old.

Don’t be daft!

I’m too old! It’s not for me.

Joan Collins does it.

Joan Collins is an icon, goddess, isn’t she?

She is really.

She can do whatever she likes. But I think I’m far too old for that. I’m not one of these people. I want to be careful in what I do. My son wants me too, but I think it’s the same with Facebook, I think that’s a bit odd if you’re over a certain age to be honest. Unless you’re a bit of an icon.

You’re beloved of certain gays, for Doctor Who, so you know…

Ah, I’m honoured, that’s a privilege.

Do you still get a lot of attention for that?

Yeah, but a lot now for Him and Her, funnily enough. And a lot for my old films. Because they’ve been on a lot on Sky, apparently. And there’s a lot of Old King Ralph fans out there, apparently.

So do you ever hear from Russell T Davies or any of that lot?

The last time I heard from Russell he text me in the early hours to say that Lis Sladen had passed away, and I had no idea that she was poorly. So he’s always in touch, and that was really upsetting. And every now and then he texts me and says ‘I’m watching you on telly’. And he really makes me laugh. He’s gorgeous with things like that, he’s just so brilliant. And yeah, I’m in touch with the guys every now and then. We’ll send a text to touch base.

Do you think you’d ever go back, if you were asked?

I think that’s done now. We’ve been back to say goodbye at least twice. You have to leave it in the past sometime really. And we left five years ago really, so it’s quite a long time. People have moved on. If anyone asked me, of course I would, brilliant. It would be a great story to go back, but I think it’s done and I think we need to leave it where it is, really.

Is Him and Her going to go for a third series? Do you know?

Do you know, I have no idea. I know that the second series is quite fantastic. I seen about four episodes. The talent, the acting, the directing is out of this world. It’s quite a vision. It’s hilarious. And these young actors. Everyone can relate to this show, it think. Being young, sharing a flat. The comings and goings of people. But I really don’t know about a third series. I guess it all depends on how this one does.

We presume you’d like to come back if they do a third series?

I would love to come back, but you know. I’d love to, absolutely. I’m in five episodes of this next series that’s coming out, so that’s quite good. Obviously they liked her a bit. So it’s good to go back and stretch that character further. And take her to other dimensions, you know.

The scene where Shelley gets drunk at a party in episode two, I heard that one of your quotes is ‘drunken people always speak the truth’. Are you speaking from experience there?

I think so. I don’t really get very drunk now. I might do soon, because it’s my husband’s birthday, but I don’t get drunk that often. But when I was younger I used to get drunk a lot, and definitely used to say things that I wouldn’t say when I was sober. I think now, I say those things sober. I think when you get older you don’t give a shit what you say. I think I’m too old, and I’m too tired, so I say it like it is, and if you don’t like it, get out of the kitchen.

So if you don’t know about Him and Her 3, there’s a question I always ask people, do you know what’s coming up next for you? What would you like to do?

There’s something I’ve just done, and I think I might do some more on it. An friend of mine is directing a film, I think it’s called Ravi. It’s about an Indian Bollywood movie director who comes over to the UK with his wife, and he wants to direct a movie. And I played his psychic life coach.

And is that another comedy role, or is it a drama?

It is, actually. Playing somebody really, and playing it seriously, but yeah, funny.

What sort of life coach would you be in real life?

I’d be brilliant. Because I read tarot cards anyway, and I’m a little bit psychic. So I’d be fantastic. I’d be a bit shit sometimes, I’d have my off days, but most of the time I’d be the real deal.

And do you do that for fun? This really interests me, how do you know that you can do that?

I’ve seen ghosts and that growing up. So, you know, I’d have people talking in my ears, and messages. And you can’t talk about that with everyone, because people think you’re nuts. My best friend is a clairvoyant, and she’s got her masters in astrology and astronomy. And she was reading my cards for years. And then one day, about five years ago, she bought me a pack of tarot cards, and I slowly have been learning it, and studying it. That’s how I got into it, and I love it and I find it fascinating.

I love it, but I’m kind of scared to do, to have a reading, in case there’s something I don’t want to know.

If you’re with somebody really good, they will be very positive, even about endings, as it were. So actually there’s nothing to worry about because the tarot readings, they’re not dark. It’s not occult, it’s not dark forces. A ouija board is, because you can let some evil shit come in. But tarot readings are meant to be a reflection and guidance really.

Have you done readings for any of the cast of Him and Her?

I have, actually. I’ve done Kerry Howard.

And how was that?

Brilliant. And I’ve read Russell’s palm, and picked up a few things there. I can’t do in-depth with palms, I haven’t studied that properly, It’s just that sometimes you know. Whenever there’s gap people will go “tell me more” and I go “I can’t tell you more, I can’t tell you everything Russell!”

Thanks for taking the time to chat about the show Camille.

I’d be really surprised if your readers hadn’t seen it. Most of them would’ve seen it because it’s so good. It’s so funny.

That and the draw of Russell Tovey in underwear.

Completely, they’re just gonna love him this year. He’s so buff.

He has got quite buff recently.

He has. I have to tell him to stay out of the gym. He’s just too pumped.

Him and Her is on BBC Three, Tuesdays and BBC iPlayer. The first series is available to buy now.

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