Published on June 26th, 2014 | by Allan Brown0
Braveheart 20th Anniversary Red Carpet Interviews & Photo’s
This year (as if by magic), marks not only the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn, but also the 20th anniversary of Mel Gibson’s sweeping Scottish historical epic; Braveheart.
To mark the 20th anniversary of the films release, several members of the cast including Brian Cox and Peter Mullan (in conjunction with the Edinburgh International Film Festival), where in attendance for the red carpet commemorative screening at the Dominion Cinema in Edinburgh. As Mel Gibson was unable to attend the event (due to filming duties in Mexico), I was lucky enough to be invited in his stead. Over the course of the night I not only got the chance to speak to the cast and steal a few pictures, but also delighted in drinking their alcohol and eat the free canapés as well (standard). Despite only having a few moments for questions, I did ask them their views on the films significance, and the impact it has undoubtedly had on Scottish culture. Here is what they had to say:
Did you realise how iconic a film is was going that first day onset?
SB – We’ll no, I mean I have to say, its quite something working on a, I think at the time, was a sixty five million dollar movie and it quite something having that as a backdrop because everything is really organised and you know, everyone is very professional and very nice to you as well, and that was my first job out of drama school, so it was a big big deal to me.
Thrown in at the deep-end?
SB – Yeah, but in the nicest way and the most supported way, so yeah, it was a really special thing for me, I certainly didn’t expect the films appeal to last this long but yeah, it’s a great movie and I’m glad it has stood the test of time.
A classic you might say
SB – I think it really is a classic
Stephen, thank you very much for your time
SB – Your welcome
Do you think it has had a positive effect of Scottish Culture
BC – Its had a very positive effect on Scottish culture. I think its an iconic film, it’s a film that a lot of people love and they love it for the reasons because it celebrates our uniqueness, who we are, and what we have come through. Everybody see’s it as an anti English film. Its not. It’s an anti imperialist film. And that is what is interesting about the film. There’s so many films that it touches upon, situations that it touches upon, countries struggling for their own worth. Braveheart hits that right on the head.
Brian was later asked if he thought the violence in Braveheart was justified in the context of a historical film
BC – He repied with; Have you watched Game of Thrones? You know, Violence is one of these facts of life, you have to treat it with respect and treat it with care. The violence in Braveheart is really to do with the time and the place. Unfortunately, you know, violence is with us wither we like it or not. I mean you could ignore it, and pretend it doesn’t happen and you can make films that don’t include it, and there are a lot of films that can be made that are not violent. But when you tackle something like the subject of a country struggle then violence is gonna come into it.
Peter Mullan, hello.
PM – Hi guys, hows it going?
How does it feel to be back after 20 years to celebrate such an iconic film?
PM – Its great. Im amazed I was even invited. I mean I’m only a f*cking spear carrier, so the fact they’re inviting the extras is nice, it’s quite egalitarian. So yeah, I’m delighted in that respect.
(haha) Very humble
PM – No No, Im serious. I stand there and say my five lines and then I show up again at the end, in brief close up.
Obviously the film is very iconic, would you say it has reinvigorated a sense of pride in a generation?
PM – No, I wouldn’t go as far as to say that, but I will say in a cinematic cultural sense, it coexists with Trainspotting, Shallow Grave, the films of Lynne Ramsay and other films of ken loach. I think, if you like the three most important film makers in Scotland in the early 90s, they were all non Scots. There was Ken Loach, Danny Boyle and there was Mel Gibbson. That’s not to say they were all singing from the same song sheet, but they all produced movies that put the Scots experience, from the silly, to the pop which is Trainspotting, to the serious which would be Ken Loach, and cinema is all of that. Completely inadvertently, I think they actually gave us more confidence in cinema than we ever thought we had before. I think the reason why so many more Scots actors have come through in the last 20 years was down to those film makers, but also to Ewan McGregor and Bobby Carlyle. The confidence they gave to other actors was off the charts.
Did you realise it was going to be that kind of film when you signed on to do it, and that it would have such an impact?
PM – No I remember Davey (David McKay) and I were stood in-line for yet another day of going “yip, yap, yip, yap” to the freedom speech. Davey said, do you think this films gonna be any good, and I said, well put it this way, it willnae win any awards. Which shows you, what the f*ck I know. And I meant it. Then 5 Oscars later…It’s how’s you I don’t know shit man.
And here we are 20 years on
PM – I know, and I really like it.
Thank’s Peter, have a great night
PM – You too man
Braveheart: Photo’s from the Red Carpet
The 20th Anniversary edition of Braveheart is released on the 27th June 2014