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Christopher Eccleston, the award-winning actor of Doctor Who, recently revealed that he believes it would be impossible for him to break into the acting industry today.
In an interview with The Guardian, Eccleston said he believes the increasing cost of training, the lack of diversity and the prevalence of celebrity culture makes it impossible for actors from working-class backgrounds to make it in the industry.
“I do not believe that someone from a working-class background like myself could become an actor today,” he said. “The cost of training is too high and the industry is dominated by celebrity culture.”
Eccleston, who grew up in a working-class family in Manchester, believes that the lack of diversity in the industry also makes it difficult for actors from different backgrounds to make it.
“I was lucky that I had access to training, support, and encouragement from my family and teachers,” he said. “But I know that many people in the industry today don't have that same level of support. That makes it even more difficult for those from working-class backgrounds to make it into the industry.”
Eccleston added that while there have been some progress in increasing diversity in the industry, there is still a long way to go.
“It's great that there are now more opportunities for actors from different backgrounds, but there is still a huge gap between the number of working-class actors and those from privileged backgrounds,” he said.
Eccleston's comments come as the British film and television industry is facing criticism for its lack of diversity and for not offering enough opportunities to working-class actors. However, Eccleston believes that with more support from the industry, it could become easier for actors from all backgrounds to make it.
“If the industry were to provide more support and training opportunities to those from working-class backgrounds, then it would be possible for them to become actors,” he said. “I am living proof of that.”