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It was ‘remarkable’ meeting Bob Marley’s widow and feeling love – Lashana Lynch

British actress Lashana Lynch said she felt the love for Bob Marley from his widow – which enabled her to embody it on screen.

Stars arrived on the red carpet in London’s Leicester Square for the premiere of Bob Marley: One Love, which celebrates the Jamaican reggae singer while underlining the power of overcoming adversity and the journey behind his pioneering music.

Produced in partnership with the Marley family, British actor Kingsley Ben-Adir plays Marley and Lynch plays his wife Rita.

“Being able to sit with Mrs Marley on the couple of occasions that I did, I was able to feel that love, I felt her love for Bob and it was pretty remarkable and because of that I was able to transfer some of it onto the screen,” Lynch told the PA news agency.

“I wanted to ensure that we had a real relationship, a real black love story on screen and that doesn’t mean that we focus on the stereotypical word love, we focus on all the complications of love – the raw love, the feeling of love, the pullback of love and where it takes you and your soul.”

Lynch, who won the Bafta Rising Star Award in 2022, said she learnt to be “present” from the Marley family.

She told PA: “Being present to everything, to your feeling, your spirit, our spirit always knows, we’ve got a little red light flagging inside of us and sometimes we don’t listen to.

“So I really learned throughout and developing my version of Mrs Marley and also just that whole shoot just how present we need to be in order to … just focus on what we deserve.”

Bob Marley: One Love UK premiere – London
Kingsley Ben-Adir and Lashana Lynch attend the UK premiere of Bob Marley: One Love (Ian West/PA)

While Ben-Adir said Marley’s ability to encourage “people around him to be the best versions of themselves” will stay with him.

He told PA: “Bob was a big encourager of finding out what it is you wanted to do, what your passion was, what your belief was. All the people that I’ve met who grew up with Bob and spent time with him, that’s the same thing they’d say.

“They’d say Bob was always checking in trying to make people better, if you were in the studio he’d say join in.

“He wanted everyone to come together and be the best version of themselves they could be so he did it in music, talking about universal peace and universal togetherness, and he also did in his life as well.”

Bob Marley: One Love UK premiere – London
Kingsley Ben-Adir attending the UK premiere of Bob Marley: One Love, at the BFI IMAX, London (Ian West/PA)

Top Boy’s Michael Ward said he came away from filming not wanting to cut his hair.

“I remember I was completely bald because obviously I was doing The Book Of Clarence last year and then I went to film Bob Marley and then when I left I was like ‘I don’t want to cut my hair ever again’.

“The way that the hair symbolises, I wouldn’t know necessarily what it specifically symbolises for Rastafarians, but what it showed for me was it was something that was sacred, it was something that they really care about.”

The film is set for release on Valentines Day, February 14.