TWIN actors from Barry have spoken of their amazement at starring alongside some of Hollywood’s biggest names in a latest blockbuster film.
Rhys and Gerald Horler have been acting for 20 years and have just seen their biggest film to date – Dream Horse – released in cinemas earlier this month.
The film is based on the true story of the syndicate in Blaenavon who owned racehorse Dream Alliance which won the Welsh Grand National in 2009 against all the odds. Rhys played Alun Baldwin and Gerald played Lee Baldwin – real-life twins who were a part of the syndicate.
The pair starred alongside well-known actors including Damian Lewis (Homeward, Band Of Brothers), Toni Colette (Sixth Sense), Peter Davison (Doctor Who) and Joanna Page (Gavin & Stacey).
Speaking on the line-up, Rhys said: “We’ve done a fair bit of acting but Dream Horse is the biggest we’ve done. It was great on set. Everyone was so nice.
“We worked with Damian Lewis who we knew from Band of Brothers, Peter Davison who we knew as Doctor Who. I spoke to him about the scene where he was rubbing something on the cyberman’s stomach and he laughed and said it was gold as that’s the only thing that could kill them.
“They were all so lovely and the chemistry you see on the screen was exactly what it was like behind the scenes. We all spent time together and got to know each other and were like a syndicate off screen as well as on screen.”
The twins didn’t audition for the part in the film – a collaboration between Warner Brothers and Film4 – they were invited to meet the director and at the time had no idea what the film was about.
“When we went there to meet the director, we had no clue what the film was about. It was very secretive,” said Gerald.
“He told us about his vision for the film and when we heard it was based on a true story, we jumped at the chance.”
Rhys added: “When we went for the rehearsal day, that was when we were told exactly what it was about.”
In total, the twins were on set for 14 days of filming, sometimes spending 10-12 hours a day on set. “Sometimes we would have to get up at 6am and wouldn’t get back home until 10pm,” said Rhys. “It was a great experience, and we were working with really nice people every day.”
Originally the film, which was filmed in May 2019, was scheduled for release in 2020 but due to the coronavirus pandemic, it was pushed back and was released in cinemas on June 4. The cast also met their real-life counterparts with some coming to the set on filming and also at the premiere.
“We had a premiere about a year ago and then had one a couple of weeks ago in Blackwood,” said Rhys. “We met Lee Baldwin (who Gerald plays) at the premiere but sadly his brother Alun died of Covid-19 before it and we never got the chance to meet him.”
“We know they really enjoyed the film,” said Gerald. “It has had great feedback from people who have seen it.”
“The Guardian gave it four out of five stars. It’s a real family film,” said Rhys. “It is suitable for everyone. It is very inspiring as it is based on a true story where everyone bands together and at times it pulls on your heart strings.”
It has also seen the twins picked up by an agent for work in Europe. “We now have a great agent in Amsterdam who is able to get us great work in Europe because of Dream Horse. We are looking for a good agent who would be able to get us work in the UK too,” said Rhys.
The pair have been keeping busy with their company Horler Knights Productions where they do videos for weddings, films and adverts for companies as well as individual projects.
Rhys creates artwork, art notebooks, journals and schoolbooks https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=rhys+horler&ref=nb_sb_noss
Gerald is working on comics based on the pair’s indie film Pure Bloodlines https://www.amazon.co.uk/Pure-Bloodlines-Cover-Gerald-Horler-ebook/dp/B077Y2MV9T/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=rhys+horler&qid=1623509544&sr=8-3
Dream Horse is in cinemas now.