Danny Dyer blasts 'disgusting' lack of working-class actors as he unleashes brutal verdict on arts

Danny Dyer

Danny Dyer has slammed the treatment of working-class actors in the performing industry

Alex Davies

By Alex Davies

Published: 09/07/2024

- 00:01

Updated: 09/07/2024

- 07:49

The former EastEnders star has opened up about the acting world

English actor Danny Dyer has slammed the performing arts industry over it's "disgusting" lack of working class performers.

The 46-year-old has been a familiar face on screens for decades, starring in the likes of The Football Factory and The Business before his recurring role as pub landlord Mick Carter in BBC soap EastEnders.

Dyer's arguably best-known for his "hard man" or "geezer" roles, often accompanied by his signature cockney accent.

In a veer away from the norm, however, Dyer is heading towards the comedy genre in his next role alongside Brassic star Ryan Sampson.

The two will appear opposite one another in upcoming series Mr Bigstuff, also written by Sampson.

Discussing the new series in this week's Radio Times, both men bemoaned how the industry they work in treats working-class performers and how it altered Sampson's writing process.

Mr Bigstuff: Danny Dyer and Ryan Sampson star

Mr Bigstuff: Danny Dyer and Ryan Sampson have spoken about the acting world ahead of Mr Bigstuff's premiere


After Sampson told the publication the treatment of working-class actors is "awful" in Britain, Dyer concurred.

"There aren’t many working-class people in the arts – it’s disgusting," he fumed.

Dyer went on: "The classism of the theatre world when I started out spurred me on.

"I wasn’t the most articulate, and I hadn’t studied Chekhov, but I knew I had something. All great actors are weird.

"You’ve got to have a bit of trauma in your life – that’s your toolbox.

"It seems to have got worse since then – we need to get more working-class kids in the arts, but I haven’t heard any politicians talk about giving them anything to aim for."

However, Dyer remains optimistic that might change and that younger generations from working-class backgrounds will take the leap.

He said: "You don’t need to be that educated – it’s about being creative and expressing yourself. I’m hoping that’ll change with a new government."

Mr Bigstuff marks Dyer's first foray back on screens since he decided to leave Albert Square behind.

In it, he takes on the role of Lee who reemerges in estranged brother Glen's (played by Sampson) life.

Mr Bigstuff: Danny Dyer and Ryan Sampson star

Mr Bigstuff: Danny Dyer and Ryan Sampson star as brothers in new Sky drama


However, in doing so, Glen's rather mundane and monotonous way of life is turned upside down.

The pair are joined in the series by the likes of Geoff Bell and Adrian Scarborough among the cast.

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