Neill Recalls Camping Catastrophes and Culinary Havens
Star of 1920s-set gangster drama Peaky Blinders, New Zealand actor Sam Neill, talks about culinary havens, camping catastrophes, and fishing in Scotland in a Telegraph travel piece.
“This year, I’ve been to New York, Sydney, Zurich and Paris. I’m a closet workaholic and my job has ricocheted me around the world, so my idea of the best holiday now is pottering on my vineyard in Central Otago,” Neill explains.
“Italy ticks all the boxes: great architecture, interesting people, layers of history and a beautiful landscape. And coffee. Italians brought coffee to Australia and New Zealand, and it has become integral to our culture. When my wife [Noriko Watanabe] was working on The Portrait of a Lady , I rented a villa near Lucca in Tuscany and lots of friends came and went. The place made its own wine and, at the end of six weeks, we’d drunk about 260 bottles. Food and drink are the most crucial parts of travel for me.”
“[Your] worst experience on holiday?” “My father seemed to attract catastrophe when we were camping as kids,” Neill says. “It was partly because he couldn’t bear to be on holiday in sight of any other human being, so we’d camp in dry riverbeds in the interior of the South Island that would flood overnight and wash us away.”
Neill plays Chief Inspector Campbell in the BBC Two Peaky Blinders, a tough policeman from Northern Ireland who is sent to crack down on Birmingham’s lawless streets.