AN ACTOR who has starred in War Horse and Downton Abbey will be starring in a J.B.Priestley play in Windsor this week.
Matt Milne had starred in the Steven Spielberg film before he had even finished his drama degree.
Half way through his degree at the University of East Anglia he decided to get an agent and joined a relatively new agency in London.
The 24-year-old said: "A week after that they said they were going to take a chance on me- I hadn't been to drama school at that point. A week later I went to an improvised audition for an unknown film, a week later I was recalled for an audition.
"I was then called up to say that I had got the part in this film which was called War Horse."
Matt, who hails from Hereford, was cast as Andrew Easton in the film- the best friend of central character Albert Narracott.
The film, which follows Albert who braves the trenches of the First World War in an effort to find his beloved horse, was a huge success.
He said: "It was a great learning experience on my first day. I got to go down on set and watch David Thewlis and Peter Mullan."
He added: "They just treated me as one of them which was really nice thing for them to do.
"Also it was just like do or die sort of thing. You can either wilt under that pressure or fight and do the best job you can."
Soon after he was cast as Agathon in Wrath of the Titans- all while he was still a uni.
Once he had finished his degree he moved to London and soon landed the role of footman Alfred Nugent in popular ITV series, Downton Abbey.
He starred in the show in season three and four.
Matt said: "It was a great learning experience. I was grateful for the opportunity- it was an incredible platform to be able to perform on."
He is currently in rehearsals for J.B.Priestley's Dangerous Corner, which opens at the Windsor Theatre Royal next week.
It also stars Robin of Sherwood’s Michael Praed, Dazeil and Pascoe’s Colin Buchanan, Emmerdale's Kim Thomson, Lauren Drummond, who has had major roles in the TV dramas Holby City and Waterloo Road and Finty Williams, whose film credits include Gosford Park and Mrs Brown.
It is directed by the former head of London’s acclaimed Almeida Theatre - Michael Attenborough.
Matt said: "He is a world class director and that is the long and short of it. I am very young in my job and this is a prime opportunity to learn from someone first class."
Dangerous Corner is a timeless classic mystery where a chance remark at a dinner party exposes a world of murder and conspiracy.
Matt said: "I play Gordon Whitehouse who is the newly appointed director of the publishing firm that the two older characters in the play, Robert Caplan and Charles Trevor Stanton are also the directors of.
"His father owned the company and he is coming into the family business.
"The whole thing about the play is all these mysteries are revealed for each of the characters. It is really exciting to play."
He has also set up his own production company to make a film about the boxing rematch between Carl Froch and George Groves at Wembley in May.
It was the biggest grossing fight on British soil in history and had a record number of 77,000 people watching.
Matt added: "Someone gave me a bit of advice- luck gets you there and hard work keeps you there."
Dangerous Corner is at Windsor Theatre Royal from September 3 to 13 Monday to Saturday at 8pm, with a Thursday matinee at 2.30pm and a Saturday matinee at 4.45pm. Tickets are £12.50 to £28.50 from 01753 853888 or go to www.theatreroyalwindsor.co.uk.
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