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Gemma Arterton says working on Song for Marion was an “antidote” to making Hollywood blockbusters.

The British actress has been keeping busy recently and can be seen in independent movie Song for Marion, as well as action fantasy Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters. Gemma finds enjoyment in both big and small budget productions.

“I think I shot [Song for Marion] immediately after Hansel & Gretel, it was an antidote to that kind of big movie. I have done those kinds of blockbuster movies, and it’s a totally different experience,” she explained to UK TV show This Morning. “You are still required to do the same kind of thing, which is to be as truthful as you can. The great thing about low budget movies is that you have to muck in and get involved and often there is a time pressure and you have to be more creative with your approach. You have to invest. You know everybody and there is a real camaraderie on set, and I personally love that because I come from a theatre background so it feels more at home.”

Song for Marion sees grumpy pensioner Arthur – played by Terence Stamp – pay tribute to his late wife’s passion for music by joining the unconventional local choir she used to belong to.

Terence has joked that the restricted budget on the movie meant all the cast were required to make the best of their vocal talents.

“They made a big song and dance on Les Mis about singing live, but we only had the money to shoot live,” he laughed. “I only had time for two lessons with the voice teacher… I sing all the time, I just haven’t sung publicly.”

Terence also discussed his character Arthur. He was happy to play the disagreeable man because he felt so at ease with his co-stars Gemma and Vanessa Redgrave – who portrays his late wife.

“The story, and the troupe and the combination of artists, it just brought out the best in everyone, really,” he explained. “So when I went on the set, the energy of the set, the collective energy, was more than the sum of the individuals. I felt so confident with Gemma and Vanessa and I had the confidence to play my character because you could feel her love for him and I thought that’s enough, I don’t need to pretend to be nice.”

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