One minute MARK ROBB is hosting a pub quiz, the next he’s in a film with Phil Daniels. Here is a man who knows the answers to all the questions. Fiona Shepherd P":c-'.r;';v;nr Craig Sanders

FORGE'I‘ THli CONVENTIONAL routes to fame and fortune drama school. casting couch. being a friend of the director‘s niece‘s window cleaner. When the definitive rulebook is written. one of the more idiosyncratic entries will read: ‘host your own pub quiz‘.

So it was that director Les Blair (Bail Behaviour. Jump The (Jun) spotted Mark Robb. While scouting for locations for his Screen Two film Stand And Deliver which stars Phil Daniels as a London stand—up comedian on a lost weekend in Glasgow Blair was taken to the Bar Miro pub quiz. which art student Robb was co-hosting in inimitable comic style.

‘I met Les in the toilets. so we had sex and he said “yeah. you‘ve got the job“.. jokes Robb. ‘Actually. I started massaging him.

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saying "i don‘t have to do these sexual favours" and he thought that was hilarious.‘

A tentative follow-up phone call secured Robb an audition and then the part of Max T. a Jock-the-lad comedy promoter with an oily

6 THE lIST 6—19 Va 1998


veneer of self-confidence which quickly evaporates when his hard cousin Sandy muscles in on his business.

‘When I was at art school I was always doing a load of performance work. but this was the first time I’d done anything other than half—arsed comedy.~ says Robb. ‘The quiz was a great stepping block. We used to get the Glasgow glitterati coming along . . well. all the Glasgow 80s musical dinosaurs. Those days have gone: now we just do it for the money.‘

He may feign complacency. but the jocular Clydebank-born 26-year-old is mindful of the golden opportunity he was handed.

‘It was a challenge to be given a part when I had no experience.’ he says. 'and to go in every day and improvise with experienced actors and keep your confidence. because this character's about confidence. , .. (ietting tip early was a

' V challenge too. and trying to

stay out of the pub each night.’

Did he garner any handy

tips from Daniels. a man apparently more recognised in Glasgow than on his home turf‘.’

‘Phil was great top mod.‘ says Robb. ‘I expected a lot more primu (10mm stuff but that mostly came from me. His advice was

“just be yourself". I did a bit of research. involving going to comedy clubs and getting pished. But I didn‘t lock myself in my room and watch pornography for three months to research Max T.‘

Robb claims he had to indulge in method acting of a different order.

‘(‘an ljust say now. on the record. that Les wanted some love handles for the bedroom scenes. so I had to put a bit of weight on. So I spent a lot of time in the liqui (‘afe to get the love handles. I looked tip Bob Bob De Niro and he said "good fry-ups every day. Mark. and loads of (itiinness".‘

As far as the menu for Robb‘s future goes. the quizzes will continue. as may his Fine Art degree. He is also gainfully employed by his dad. who runs a coffee delivery business and who is expecting his son any minute now. But with a couple of auditions pending. would he like to give acting a concerted effort'.’

‘I think I do now.‘ he muses. ‘l‘ve made the decision over the last . . . couple of minutes. drinking my coffee. I‘ll have to wait and see how I’m received after .S'tuml rllld Deliver. In the meantime. I’m going to finish my coffee run for my dad.‘

Stand And Deliver is on BBC2 on Sun 15 Mar, 10.15pm.