Sex and the City
Casting Robson Green as a venture capitalist in ITV's new six-part thriller Take Me could work wonders for the profession. The Geordie superstar plays a ruthless investor whose life is thrown into turmoil when he becomes involved in a suburban wife-swapping ring. The role of high-powered business executive is something of a departure for Green, though his character still has some traits that are not entirely unfamiliar. Take Me is described as a contemporary love story, and Green is at its hub - trying to save his own ailing marriage, but engulfed in a sex circle that ultimately has tragic consequences.
"Jack is a normal middle-class guy who becomes vulnerable when he sees his wife kissing a work colleague and starts to question everything in his life. It's about his dysfunctional marriage. It's not for the faint-hearted," he warns. One scene, filmed at the site of the former Swan Hunter shipyard on Tyneside where Green once worked as an apprentice, was particularly poignant for the actor. "I found myself talking about shutting down Swan Hunter which was weird," he says. "In my eyes, anyone who strips a firm of its assets has no humanity."
Though he, his wife Vanya, their baby son Taylor and Vanya's daughter Lara, 14, share a home in Surrey, Green admits he prefers Newcastle, where he owns a second property. "It's where my family and friends are," he says. "If you lose that, you lose direction."
Green's production company, Coastal, is also based in the North East. "I've had this ambition to bring work to an area that needs it. We have the talent," he says. Of his own skills, Green says modestly, "I get offered lead parts, so I realise I'm obviously a commodity to be exploited within the industry, but I don't have an objective view of where I fit in with other actors."
Green's recent successes include Grafters, Reckless, Touching Evil (to which Bruce Willis has bought the rights) and Close & True, with James Bolam. He has turned down a number of offers to work in Los Angeles, but hasn't ruled out the possibility. "I can see myself doing films in a year or two," he says. "Some of the scripts I've seen are tremendous."
Asked whether he is the highest-paid actor on TV, he says without hesitation, "I don't know. I'm very well paid and I've never complained. I have never, ever negotiated on a salary. I go, 'Fine, that'll do very nicely.'"