Tony Curran did an interview over at ReelScotland before his appearance on Doctor Who aired in the UK last Saturday. He talked about his career, including working on Doctor Who, Ondine (which opened in the US last Friday), The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen with Sean Connery, and upcoming roles in Tintin and Big Momma’s House 3. You can read the full interview over at ReelScotland. Thanks to Ross for sharing the interview.
We’ve all read about the rumblings on the set of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Sean Connery is quoted as threatening to punch director Stephen Norrington. How did you get on with Sir Sean as the two Scots on set? What do you remember of your time on the shoot?
I definitely got on with Sean, we had a good laugh. I don’t know of any Scottish actor, or any actor as a whole, getting the opportunity to work with Big Tam who wouldn’t be inspired. It would be a joy for most people. I mean, if they got on with him.
Me and Jason Flemyng became good friends on that film and Sean’s assistant said to us one day, “I must give you a piece of advice. There’s two things you must never do in front of Sean.” We said, “what’s that?” She said, “the first thing is you must never do ‘the voice’. The second thing is NEVER do ‘the voice’.” So, at the first read-through me and Flemyng just couldn’t help ourselves and we were like [adopts faux-Sean Connery voice], “how you doin’ big fella? Nice to see you, eh!” Sean was like [Connery voice], “shut the fuck up!” Anyway, we got on very well and had a good laugh. He was quite wonderfully sarcastic and good fun. If he was dishing out patter, he certainly liked it when people dished it back to him. I think he preferred it when people would riff with him and have a good laugh.
He was dancing with my mother one night and he said [Connery voice], “Mary, you’re the spitting image of your boy,” and my mum said, “yeah, Sean, thank you, I get that a lot – apart from the beard!” Apparently Sean said, “well that’s only a matter of time!” – which is very naughty, but very funny at the same time....What can you tell us, if anything, about Tintin? Do you have a big role? Who did you work with?
I’ve got not a bad role in it. I was there for about a week and Steven Spielberg’s obviously directing it, and Peter Jackson was directing it as well. It was a really fun experience with the old motion capture suit on, where you’re basically looking like a speed skater! Andy Serkis said that in black spandex, you look like you should be in the Russian gymnastics team or something!
Yeah, that was a lot of fun that show, but I think I spoke to some newspaper about that once and then it was out. The next day I got a phonecall from the studio saying, “hey, don’t talk about this! Don’t say anything about it!”
There was a bunch of people in that: Andy Serkis, Daniel Craig was in it, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Jamie Bell. I was only on it for a week but it was a fun gig. Motion capture’s a strange way of working but once you forget about people that have got all those dots on their face and a Madonna-type mic, which is actually a camera and a helmet attached to their head, you try to get into the character and the part you’re playing. Then you actually look at yourself on a screen that’s behind where you’re acting and you can see your animated image of your physical self, which is quite cool. You’re like, ‘wow, that’s what I’m going to look like.’ It was a fun job. [Ross Maclean]