Published: 10:26, 15 September 2021
| Updated: 10:28, 15 September 2021
A Kent man has featured in the latest instalment of one of the most popular British gangster film franchises of all time.
In Rise of the Footsoldier: Origins, Steven Cooper, from Leysdown, Sheppey, has a dispute with one of the main characters Patrick Tate, played by Craig Fairbrass.
The film, which was released in cinemas on September 3, is the fifth instalment in the crime franchise, which is explores how the notorious Essex Boys first united in the late 1980s.
In Origins, Vinnie Jones plays Bernard O'Mahoney, a real-life character associated with one of the three men murdered in the infamous Range Rover killings, Tony Tucker - played by Terry Stone.
When asked how he landed his part in the movie, Mr Cooper said: "I got forwarded for the role, where I was already writing and directing myself, and we started filming for the scene last November."
The 34-year-old added: "I'm only in it for about three minutes, but it's for the main introduction of the character Patrick – the first time you see him is with me; having an altercation.
Mr Cooper, who said he was not nervous about his first feature film acting role, was invited to the movie's premiere in London's Leicester Square at the beginning of this month.
"It was brilliant," he said. "I was on director Nick Nevern's table.
"It's something I never thought I would achieve, being someone from the Island and all the negativity it gets, but now I can say I've walked the red carpet."
He added: "I've always had a passion for film but, after losing my brother Shane, it helped me get out of a dark place by studying acting and film.
"I turned all my negative energy into that and that's what helped me take this career path and open up the doors to acting."
Mr Cooper has also created his own reality sitcom called Capers, which is filmed on Island and features a number of local businesses.
It follows the story of three brothers – Desmond Cape, played by Islander Adam Hornshaw, Charlie Cape, played by Ronnie Lindsay, who lives in Sittingbourne, and Maxwell, played by Mr Cooper – who are trying to make better lives for themselves.
Mr Cooper, a father-of-one, has written five seasons, of which each has eight episodes. The pilot and a special episode, dedicated to former Islander Connor Russon, are now available on Youtube, while filming for the first episode of season one will begin in November.
He said: "The goal is to put this little Island on the map. We're trying to show as many positive points and places to go on Sheppey. It's a funny storyline, but relatable, and it touches on a number of issues including mental health too."