Brother and sister star in Laurel and Hardy movie
9:20am Sunday 23rd September 2012 in News
THEY were pioneering stars of the silver screen and two of the funniest comedians in movie history.
Now two young siblings from Bolton are playing key roles in a movie about the formative years of Laurel and Hardy.
Abby Nicholls, aged 12, and her six-year-old brother, Joshua Nicholls of Singleton Avenue, Horwich , starred in Stan’s Childhood, a film released this week focusing on the young Stanley Jefferson, better known as Stan Laurel.
The duo appear as young Sarah Metcalfe, Laurel’s grandmother, and Gordon Jefferson, his older brother.
Filming on the project took about six months of weekends for the two child actors. They auditioned for the parts after their drama group instructor, Amanda Fairclough, mentioned the movie to their mother, Sonia Nicholls.
Despite being nervous, the youngsters both impressed director, David Worthington — Joshua opted to recount a version of Goldilocks, while Abby, recited a poem.
Joshua has previously starred in adverts for supermarket Aldi, while Abby has won local talent competitions, including Horwich Parish has Talent.
Mrs Nicholls, aged 44, said “They really enjoyed the whole experience.
“Abbie wants to do performing arts, and Josh just loves to sing and dance when he has the chance.
“Perhaps the most difficult part for the children was filming in freezing conditions in the middle of winter.
“There was a lot of shooting held outside, while it was cold and snowing in the middle of Wigan.”
Abby, who goes to Rivington and Blackrod High School, has experienced a good reaction from her classmates, while Josh, a pupil at Horwich Parish Primary, says he takes a pen to school now to sign autographs for his friends.
The filmed premiered at the Empire Cinema in Wigan on Monday.
The youngsters are now reportedly in contention for roles in Mr Worthington’s next film, the details of which have not yet been revealed. Speaking about Stan’s Childhood, Mr Worthington said: “Nothing’s ever been covered about this part of his life before. There’s been a lot about his career, but I think it’s interesting to show people that, as he was growing up, he was already developing his comedy skills, with his pranks and tricks and the everyday mishaps he later made funny.”
Stan’s Childhood is due to be released on DVD later this year