Saffron Walden’s Waterloo Road star lands film role

Zebb Dempster has landed a lead role in action thriller Reflex Action

Zebb Dempster has landed a lead role in action thriller Reflex Action - Credit: Archant

Waterloo Road star and ex-Saffron Walden County High School student Zebb Dempster has landed a role in a film due to shoot this summer.

The eighteen-year-old, who left college at 16 to pursue his acting career, announced on Thursday (June 4) he had netted a role in independent thriller Reflex Action.

He said: “It’s really exciting, it’s an independent film and it may be a cinema release, but you never know how it’s going to come out.

“It’s set in a private school and it’s about some guys who rob an armoured vehicle and use the school in a hostage kind of situation.

“I’m one of the three main student characters. I play a new student on a scholarship, so I get to play the nice guy.”

Written, directed and produced by Chris Hastings, Reflex Action will be shooting in Shropshire throughout August.

Zebb added: “Actors at my level get about one in ten of the parts they audition for.

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“There was a massive Tim Burton film I went for but I knew I’d messed up because I was so nervous.”

Starting out in amateur dramatics aged five, Zebb won his first major role as Leo Fitzgerald in Waterloo Road after a series of auditions through Young Actors, Cambridge.

“I think about 300 hundred people auditioned for the part,” he said, “It’s nerve racking because the closer you get the more disappointing it is if you don’t make it.

“When you get that first part it sort of feels like you’ve won the lottery.”

At 16 he moved to Scotland to film the BBC series in two shoots, each lasting three months, before touring and appearing at a series of events and interviews.

“I was lucky to have a lot of experienced people around me and it really matured me, particularly living on my own in Glasgow,” he said,

“I got to go to the BAFTA pre party which was pretty amazing. I get star struck really easily and there were famous people everywhere I looked.”

Zebb has high hopes for the future and is considering trying to break into the American pilot season if Reflex Action is a success.