Stephen King’s Misery at the Connaught Theatre, Worthing

Rebecca Wheatley
Rebecca Wheatley

The celebrated James Caan/Kathy Bates film Misery comes to Worthing in a production of Stephen King’s classic horror story.

Rebecca Wheatley (Casualty) and Philip Bulcock (Jersey Boys) are the tormentor and the tormented in a twisted tale is set in the depths of Colorado.

Philip Bulcock

Philip Bulcock

Romantic-fiction novelist Paul Sheldon is caught in a freak snowstorm.

After crashing his car, Paul cannot believe his luck when he is rescued by former nurse Annie Wilks who is also his number one fan.

But it’s soon clear that Annie is precisely the kind of fan you really don’t want to have.

Rebecca, who lives in Hove, is delighted to be playing so close to home (Connaught Theatre, Tuesday, August 28-Saturday, September 1); she’s even more delighted to be playing so complex and evil a character.

“Dramatically it is a fantastic part,” she said.

“I haven’t done many thrillers before.

“I have done dramatic roles, but not really thriller thrillers. She is just amazing.

“There is a lot to learn and a lot of work of to do.

“She has touches of humour, but she really is a complexly evil character. She is very disturbed as a person.

“But actually the reason she keeps Paul Sheldon alive so long is because she loves him. It’s infatuation.

“She has a different relationship with him.”

It’s clear that she has killed time and time before, but with Sheldon things are different: “They both understand that she will kill him, but to her, she is being kind to him simply by torturing him rather than killing him outright.

“For her, that’s love.

“And she is also very puritanical. She says to him ‘Don’t smoke! It will give you cancer!’ And you think what she is doing to him. She is a psychopath.

“I have played quite a lot of characters who are mad and harmless rather than mad and psychotic, so for me to be truly bad is a departure.

“I am really quite a smiley person.”