Burke & Hare

>> Monday, October 4, 2010

On a gray, damp morning in February, director John Landis sitting at a monitor in the stables of Knole House, Kent, gripping a can of Diet Coke. He speaks - or rather, shouting - the opening titles for his new film, Burke and Hare. This is a story of the infamous history of Irish workers who discovered the eponymous profits by supplying cadavers to anatomists ambitious and began to kill people to keep up with demand.

Landis said the film is a romantic comedy. "So we shot until melted Edinburgh Castle," he began, "though many of the smoke and s ---, he said," Edinborough "or whatever, in 1828 .. There will be many voices saying things Scottish Scottish accents are a lot of activity Many argue "a small boy darts across the screen:" .. There's Oliver Twist an appearance. ongoing action. Appropriate sounds. Directed by me. cut, we will. "

Landis swivels in her chair and stalks in the yard, who, while performing in a market in Edinburgh in the mud-rich, vegetables, beef and extra dark and soundtracked the horn of a flock of poultry in a cage. "Why did you follow me?" He shouted. "Come with me!

Landis, whose previous films include The Blues Brothers and Trading Places is in turmoil. This is the first feature film that he's in a decade. But he laughed the idea that this is a return. "I read this thing -" it has not worked for 10 years. "Bulls ---, I work constantly, I think I did a big movie regularly. And people say what they want and they always do, so who cares? "

He walks like he talks, the game swing in despair. I can not believe you asked a stupid question! It's not really the pictures that you tail, are they? Behind expensive-looking glasses are a few eyebrows as expressive as exclamation points, accompanied by a mustache, beard and flat cap, he could hardly wear a costume comedy.

Landis began his career with the film Kentucky Fried good, stupid, dirty sketch comedy, and in conversation he was a tangent to shoot some riffs.

The conditions are difficult, drizzle descended from an empty sky. Landis, waterproof pants, stay warm. Between shots - the comedian Bill Bailey is a little explaining to the camera - Landis introduces the crew. "Many of them do it for much less money because they wanted my job," he said, "what they're really sorry. The bloom is off the rose now. This is Martin Hume, our cameraman A. Arentcha a real pro, and you're bored?

He turned to a big redhead Tweedy. "This man, nobody knows what he does. You are the cows, right? In America, you get an s --- kicker, chewing tobacco," Here're your cows, man. "In England, you want a Cows that get you? Watch this guy: smart.

Aside from Landis and his wife, costume designer Deborah Nadoolman, the crew is British. The cast includes a vivid, time-spanning British talent, but the son, Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis (and their Australian Isla Fisher), there's Bailey, Tim Curry, Tom Wilkinson, Jessica Hynes Stephen Merchant, Ronnie Corbett Christopher Lee and Jenny Agutter. There's even a place for Michael Winner.

"I like the supporting actors," says Landis. "Have you seen his Gal Friday? Rosalind Russell, Cary Grant, Ralph Bellamy, directed by Howard Hawks. This is one of the best comedies ever made, and very serious, but f --- ing funny. What me think of that? Because it is filled with wonderful actors.

Apart from the cast almost all in Britain and the crew, the film produced by Ealing Studios. So it's a British comedy classic? I offer. Landis cracked. "Everybody says to me than the English: for it is not. This is the British culture. But funny is funny."

But it is in the vein of other Ealing comedies, black, is not it? I suggest. "Definitely!" He replies, incredulous. "I have thought I said that!" No, this is just my attempt at Ealing comedy in the tradition of many black Noblesse oblige and The Ladykillers, where the murders all the players together. "

Ealing had great commercial success during the past years on the back of their remakes St Trinian's. Criticism, however, is something of a kick to take, a fact not lost Barnaby Thompson. He is the head of Ealing Studios, one of the producers of Burke and Hare. He is tall and reserved. "Critics tend to be hypercritical of British films, he says, perched on a bale of hay courage." The movies they tend to support is generally very small, non-commercial British films.

Maybe Landis change. He can be brash, it may be American, my God, it can be difficult, but it is also a filmmaker, almost a film historian, is the extent of his knowledge u. He remained in the post room at Fox, when he 17 years old and have lunch with Hitchcock - "It was like a lunch with God - when he was barely out of adolescence." John is absolutely steeped in all the old Ealing films "said Thompson." It means a lot to his generation of talent. This is clearly fond of British culture, but when I say there is something an Anglophile, he denied it.

Landis made his first film in 1973, when he was 23, he was the king of anarchic comedy of the radicals in the eighties. He made the Blues Brothers, a celebration of music R & B that many theater owners refused to show white, and linked to the general public in movies like Trading Places, Three Amigos! and come to America. And there was a werewolf in London, Rick Baker, the most requested special effects artists in the world created, Jenny Agutter was a sex symbol, and all inspired by Michael Jackson - Landis won for directing the seminal Thriller video - Simon Pegg.

Pegg, who plays William Burke, was safe in his trailer with his laptop on the table, the U.S. showed Saturday Night Live sketches in the background. He was swaddled in a suit, layers of wool olive green buttons attached, with all kinds of authentic locations, but unlikely.

Pegg is one of the first players to sign up to Burke and Hare: "I think the first movie I saw was probably John's Animal House and American Werewolf and Trading Places. American Werewolf is one of my favorite movies ever. And the idea of returning to work on a smaller budget and only left his thing to do was very interesting for me. "

Was all excited a serial killer to play? I enjoy the fun morality, 'says Pegg,' where he asks you to sympathize with two people that actually Mass murderers. It challenges the audience, definitely.

Andy Serkis (Hare) agrees: "I think the villains of the piece are actually doctors, played by Tom Wilkinson and Tim Curry, this self-service, rather pompous pair the big cats, really. John said:" You like a lot of Laurel and Hardy, "so hopefully we almost pulled that off.

With an American Werewolf in London, Landis practically wrote the book on horror and fusion of comedy (it goes without saying that he was reading the book on the subject - a man named William Paul's Laughing Screaming ). "First, it's the same thing," he said. "They call a physical reaction involuntary: you sigh or cry or laugh, they are spasms. But they are both very difficult. But we are by no means a horror film."

Pardon? "The character played by Tim Curry, people's feet to cut, but you know it's just a hobby." There are many bodies, even if Landis is working on a tight budget -. "Hitchcock said movies are constantly compromised, and he's right - he had to call for help from his friends.

John Call Greg Nicotero, who is one of the largest houses makeup effects in Los Angeles, said Pegg runs. And as a favor asked him to send the bodies, and they have sent them in many organs from dead silicon. What you should take in promoting this sector, there is no money.

Despite the time constraints (the film was shot in eight weeks) and budget, Landis is careful about setting the period. "I thought it would be a movie beard," he said. "But it's the wrong time. No beard. I was very surprised."

It could be a comedy, with many anachronistic "script (words Pegg), but at the insistence of Landis, the places are so precise, time-wise as possible.

"By 1828, it is not Victorian, it's actually Regency," said Landis. 'Not only that Victorian, but that is Edinburgh in 1828 and 1829, very specifically, and most of them vanished. We have turned to Edinburgh and Osterley House, and here in Knole and just f --- up in ING, and we miraculously did. This is important because it is not just a comedy, there are a lot of quality going on in this film. "Vita Sackville-West may be surprised that his ancestral home double as a slum, but the courtyard at Knole was chosen because it is built of stone on the right.


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