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Cherry Pop

Ewan McGregor  ('Big Fish) Ewan McGregor ('Big Fish)
'Sounds A Bit Fishy To Me!'

One of the greatest of the Scottish clans is the Clan Gregor. We are all familiar with its most famous son, Rob "Roy" MacGregor, immortalised in legend and played by Liam Neeson on film. And the clan boasts other renowned sons. There was John McGregor, a piper who fought and died alongside Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie at the Alamo: another John, this time MacGregor, who introduced canoeing to Great Britain: there was the folk singer and TV star, Jimmy MacGregor. And, since where there is fame there is usually notoriety, there is Ian MacGregor, the former boss of British Coal, who helped Margaret Thatcher crush the miners in the mid-Eighties.

But surely the name Gregor rose to its highest peak of fame as young Ewan McGregor, Scotland's biggest movie star since Sean Connery, climbed inexorably through the Hollywood ranks. He crooned with and pined for Nicole Kidman in the award-winning 'Moulin Rouge'. He fought alongside Josh Hartnett and Tom Sizemore in Ridley Scott's super-contemporary military action epic 'Black Hawk Down'. And then he was the young Obi-Wan Kenobi in the 'Star Wars' prequel trilogy that began with 'The Phantom Menace', amongst the most successful films of all time. Add to this the controversy surrounding 'Trainspotting' and the many furores caused by Ewan's continual onscreen nudity, and you have a very famous actor, indeed.

What did you like most about the story? "I like that it's a very simple film about a father and a son. The father, as he gets older, looks through rosy spectacles at his past. He's always the hero of the day and everything is larger than life. I think there's something about fathers and sons. This is a film about the reparation of a father-son relationship, but at the same time it's got this wonderful fantastical quality."

How did you approach the role? "My job very much was just to play the fantastical life of Albert's character, someone who's just slightly larger than life. I mean, I got to play Albert Finney as a young man! It was an amazing honour to meet him, never mind play the man! Finney is a legend and for me, and not only did I get to play him as a younger man in a movie, I also got to some spend some time with him. It blew me away."

How about the Alabama accent? "Well yes, it was rather bizarre. There's me from Scotland and Albert's English and we're both playing this guy from Alabama!"

You spent quite a bit of time living in Alabama with your family during filming. How was that? "There's a great neighbourliness in that part of the world, and my backyard was always full of kids from the neighbourhood, which was just brilliant. People really did bring you pies to welcome you to the neighbourhood! It was exactly the thing you read about."

Finally, we have to ask you about being in Danny DeVito's first nude scene ... he's quite proud of it we hear! "Yeah, I got to act with Danny DeVito naked in a wood, and that's a moment I will never forget!"
Interviewed by Alana Lee

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