Video: Barry's a dead ringer for Michael Caine

NOT a lot of people know this - but Sir Michael Caine has a body double from Suffolk.

Laurence Cawley

NOT a lot of people know this - but Sir Michael Caine has a body double from Suffolk.

Reluctantly giving in to the nagging of friends and family, Barry Waterman took the plunge and became a professional Sir Michael Caine lookalike.

Mr Waterman, who with his wife Jane owns the White Horse pub in Beyton, near Bury St Edmunds, said becoming a lookalike and sound-a-like had been one of the best decisions he had ever made.


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“When you look in a mirror all you ever really see is you. But other people kept seeing Michael Caine and people kept pushing it and pushing it so I thought to myself 'let's take this on and give it a go'.”

That was back in 2002 and he was an instant success on the show Stars And Their Doubles in which he got to the finals, but was beaten to the winner's podium by a David Beckham lookalike.

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After that he was taken on by an agent and corporate work, photo shoots and being hired for private parties soon followed. One of the key things which separated Mr Waterman from the many lookalikes was the fact his voice was very similar to Sir Michael's own.

Mr Waterman, who is originally from Letchworth in Hertfordshire, has never met the real Sir Michael, but he would like to.

“I admire the man greatly. He came from nothing to where he is now with everything he has achieved. I would really like to meet the guy,” Mr Waterman said.

Asked what his wife made of it, Mr Waterman said: “She doesn't say a lot. She thinks it's cool. My daughters seem to like it and one of them told me how, when she sees Sir Michael in a film, thinks to herself how much like her Dad he looks.”

One of Mr Waterman's close friends is a Sir Sean Connery impersonator from Cheshire. For fun they like to get into character and go to posh hotels.

“The key to becoming conspicuous is to try and be inconspicuous,” he said. “We just watch people wondering and watching us. It is great fun, it is a personal thing.”

Mr Waterman is constantly trying to perfect his act by playing close attention to Sir Michael's mannerisms and gestures in films and interviews. But he is yet to sit down and watch every Sir Michael Caine film.

“He's done over 100 films now. I have watched most of them but not all of them,” he said.

But while most people who meet Mr Waterman can't wait for one-liners from films like The Italian Job or Alfie, Mr Waterman's favourites are The Quiet American and The Statesman.

Mr Waterman's next project is to try to combine his impersonation work with living the life of a movie star, such as doing work on cruises to the Caribbean.

Last week he found himself at the centre of a dispute between Sir Michael's agents and Suffolk-based Equity Portfolio Management, which was threatened with legal action after a printing mistake led to Sir Michael's name being used on an event flyer rather than simply “Michael Caine”.

- Anybody wanting to find out more about Mr Waterman can visit his website at www.michaelcainelookalike.co.uk.

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