BY SIMON YAFFE
UNLIKE many actors, Axel Kaae is rather self-deprecating. In fact, the 23-year-old doesn't like to watch himself on the big or small screens.
But it hasn't stopped him from landing numerous roles - and working with acting coaches in New York City.
Axel - who stars in Channel 4 film One Punch next month - is planning on making a permanent move to the Big Apple later in the year.
North-west London raised Axel, who was born to a Persian Jewish mother and a Danish father, told me: "I don't watch myself because I can be my own worst critic.
"If I do something with my drama coach and we film it, I will have to watch it. But my mind starts running when I watch myself."
He only came into acting four years ago, following what he described as a "rebellious childhood".
Axel said: "I was in and out of schools before finally leaving school at a young age.
"I went to work in the property business, but realised it was not for me. I always had a dream of becoming an actor, but because it is such a hard career, I was scared to take the risk, until one day I just decided to go for it."
He sought out acting coaches in London and clicked with one of them in particular, Tim Kent, who introduced Axel to the movers and shakers in showbusiness.
Axel's first role was in a short film called Cherry, followed by parts in numerous shorts and adverts.
One, Sunday Dinner with the Morgans, received the Royal Television Society award for best student film.
"It received quite a bit of press and acclaim," Axel recalled. "Paul Clayton, who has been in EastEnders, Coronation Street and lots of other TV series and movies, was in it, too."
A particular challenging role was as crack addict Axl in the 2014 film Debt.
"It was about a guy who finally decides to go clean," he explained.
"What I found was, when you have been that way for so many years, you create a large drug culture around yourself.
"Coming off crack is more difficult than becoming addicted to it."
Axel, who was barmitzvah and raised in a culturally Jewish home, was introduced to acting coaches in New York.
He has been working - and living there - over the past few months and intends to move there full-time within the next few months.
"My agent and manager are both based there, so it will be easier for me," Axel explained.
"Because I am currently based in London, it is more difficult to sort things out and move forward, career-wise."
His latest part is as Ben in One Punch. He explained: "There are four different stories within the film in which a person was killed by a single punch. They are all based on true events.
"Ben is a man who unintentionally kills another man in self-defence.
"The story unfolds to show the prelude of how this incident came about and then the consequences."
Axel also has a role in upcoming BBC drama, Save the BBC, which will be shown online later in the year.