Cumbernauld schoolboy is starring in major new movie with Steve Coogan and Sally Hawkins!

A Cumbernauld schoolboy is following in the acting footsteps of two famous relatives and will see his own dramatic efforts premiered in a major new movie.

Benjamin Scanlan
Benjamin Scanlan

Benjamin Scanlan (12), has already enjoyed a VIP preview of ‘The Lost King’ which got its world premiere at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival earlier this month and is released here on October 8.

The new film is a comedy-drama co-written by BAFTA winning actor Steve Coogan and directed by BAFTA and Emmy award winner Stephen Frears. It tells the story of amateur historian Phillipa Langley – played by Sally Hawkins - defying the stodgy academic establishment in her efforts to find King Richard III’s remains.

The Royal’s body had been lost for more than 500 years – and was then discovered beneath a car park in Leicester ten years ago. In the movie Coogan plays Phillipa’s husband John Langley and young Benjamin plays their son Raife.

Benjamin attends the Glasgow-based UK Theatre School for weekend performing arts classes and landed the role via the school’s own in- house casting agency which liaises with all the major moviemakers.

Benjamin’s family has acting in its genes – his late great-uncle was Sean Scanlan who was well known in Scottish theatrical circles and starred in Two Thousand Acres of Sky, Hamish Macbeth and Rab C Nesbitt.

His great-aunt who married Sean is the legendary Barbara Rafferty, currently starring in BBC Scotland’s River City. Her other acting credits include playing Ella Cotter in Rab C Nesbitt.

Benjamin said “I couldn’t believe it when I landed the part. I’d done a few other things like Outlander and a Vodaphone advert but always as an extra. I’d been dreaming about a big role for years and always hoped it would happen. Steve Coogan was really good to work with and was very funny. Sally Hawkins who played my mum was lovely.”

UKTS principal Lizanne Lambie Thomson described Benjamin as a ‘natural talent’ and added: “We’re immensely proud and excited for him.”

His great-aunt Barbara said: “He’s so focused and I’ve tried to give him as many pieces of advice as possible. Getting his name on the credits of such a mainstream movie is just amazing.”