Douglas Henshall reveals his sweating caused problems in Netflixs Who is Erin Carter?

Fans of BBC One drama Shetland are used to seeing Douglas Henshall solve crimes in the cold. But the actor is swapping the Scottish isles for the Spanish heat in Netflix’s latest thriller Who Is Erin Carter?.

The 57-year-old stars in the new seven-parter, which follows British substitute teacher Erin (played by Swedish actress Evin Ahmad) living in Barcelona with her devoted husband and a young daughter. But when Erin is caught in a violent robbery and recognised by one of the assailants, dark secrets from her past threaten the new life she’s built for herself.

Who is Erin Carter? marks Douglas’s first major role since quitting Shetland last year and while spending four months filming in the Spanish city was a highlight, he admits that he underestimated just how hot it would be. “I didn’t keep in mind that I came from shooting in Shetland to suddenly being in the middle of Barcelona in the summer working in 42 degrees with humidity,” he says. “And you’re filming indoors without air conditioning because otherwise the sound department would pick it up.

“I was wearing a suit and given my Scottish complexion, I was afraid at some point I was going to melt into a little puddle on the floor! At times my main focus was just to plead with my sweat glands to behave.”

In the Netflix drama, Douglas plays Daniel Lang – a businessman whose disruptive son Dylan is a pupil in Erin’s class. While Erin initially sees him as just another parent, we soon learn that he has secrets of his own and a vested interest in keeping Erin close.

Explaining his role, Douglas describes Daniel as “not the top of the food chain” but “not exactly middle management” in his mysterious career. “He’s doing very well for himself but in such a precarious business as his, he’s wary of everything,” he adds. “Because he lives his life in an extremely difficult situation he is constantly quite held and repressed.”

We meet Daniel when he’s called into school to deal with his son’s naughty behaviour. “Dylan has sat down with an exam paper and drawn some vulgar doodles all over it and then left,” he says. “Daniel goes to see what can be smoothed over.

“Obviously, Daniel is interested in anybody who’s teaching his son because, on top of being concerned for his son, I think he’s also concerned about what his son might let slip at school about his business. So Daniel wants to be on top of the situation.”

In the show, Douglas acts opposite Evin, who takes on her first-ever English speaking role as the titular Erin. While Douglas wasn’t familiar with Snabba Cash – the Swedish action-packed drama that made her a star – he was stunned by her performance on set.

“Evin can do everything. Her martial art skills were fantastic,” he says. “As an actor, she’s really something.”

Many of their scenes together took place in Daniel’s luxurious Barcelona abode, which the Outlander star describes as a “Bond villain house”. “It’s secluded which is ideal for Daniel. It’s a place of safety and somewhere calming where he can get away from the turmoil that is constantly surrounding him.

“There were two photos in Daniel’s house side by side: one of a bull about to attack a bullfighter and the other is a bullfighter being carried away from the arena having been gorged,” he adds. “There’s a moment in the show where Daniel is standing in front of the photos piecing it all together in his head. I thought those two photos nailed Daniel.”

Douglas even got the chance to step inside a real-life Catalonia bullring to film one of the show’s climactic showdowns, but the actor did admit the arena felt a bit spooky at night. “We were doing night shoots and when you walk into the middle of the arena, all the ghosts are still there. You can feel what has happened there,” he reveals. “It really is quite spectacular especially given the nature of the scene we were shooting.”

As for what Douglas is doing next, he’s leaving behind Barcelona and heading back to the UK to star in Agatha Christie’s Murder Is Easy. He says, “I’m working with a bunch actors that I’ve worked with before. You always get an eclectic mix of characters in Agatha Christie so I’m enjoying that.” We hope the weather here doesn’t dampen his spirits!

Who is Erin Carter? lands on Netflix on Thursday 24th August.

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