In the heist thriller King of Thieves, Charlie Cox plays Basil, a new recruit among a team of experienced criminals. The film is based on a true story, yet circumstances of the heist prevented Cox from drawing real-life inspiration from the man he was portraying, creating unique challenges for the performer.
"That was the thing that I was actually most challenged by and excited by is I read the script, and it was very clear in the script Joe [Penhall] had done a thorough investigation but, of course with Basil, there's very little known and so the question for me was making sure that we understand why he's there, why is Basil there?" Cox shared with ComicBook.com. "Why is he there if he's so much younger than the rest [of the crew]? Why is he involved? How does he get involved? And if he's the one with the key, if he's the catalyst to it all, then why does he go to those guys? Why does he go to someone twice his age? Why doesn't he have any friends of his own?"
King of Thieves is based on infamous true events. A true crime film about a crew of retired crooks who pull off a major heist in London's jewelry district. What starts off as their last criminal hurrah quickly turns into a brutal nightmare due to greed.
"That was really what I started to stick with as I went down the route of uncovering who I believed Basil to be," the actor elaborated. "With this idea that he's this loner, he goes to Brian Reader because he doesn't have any mates of his own and he's a bit of a weirdo. He's a bit socially awkward but he actually also happens to be technically pretty capable and he's able to bring to that team the one thing they don't have, which is an understanding of alarm systems, and computers, and stuff like that."
Much like the character he plays in the film, Cox's goal on the set of the production was to observe as much from his co-stars as he could, with talents like Michael Caine, Jim Broadbent, and Ray Winstone all having dozens of impressive credits to their names.
"My game plan was just, as much as possible, just shut up and get on with it, and learn as much as possible from them, and hopefully hear some great anecdotes or stories over their decade long careers, and just relish every minute of getting to work with these guys," Cox noted. "So it's, as I said, it's just a dream come true."
Fans can check out King of Thieves when it hits Digital HD and VOD on January 25th.