Kenneth Branagh interview: ‘The ground from beneath my feet had been taken away and now I was walking on sand: if ever there was a living metaphor for instability, it was that’

Kenneth Branagh’s new film, Belfast, which covers the start of the Troubles and the effect it had on the actor as a nine-year-old boy, has been given a universally positive reception and could well put him in line for an Oscar

Actor and director Kenneth Branagh: ‘ I would always say to myself that the time I lived in Belfast was the time I best knew who I was.’ Picture: Kelvin Boyes/Press Eye

Kenneth Branagh is very good at Zoom. Perhaps that shouldn’t come as a surprise for someone who has spent a lifetime in front of, and behind, the camera, but it’s still notable how precisely he has framed himself in the centre of the screen.

Sat upright in a straight-backed chair, an iPad propped between two books on a low table, the 61-year-old actor and director couldn’t look more composed and relaxed. As he waves down ...