ON HIS APPEARANCE
ON GOING TO DRAMA SCHOOL
ON ACTING FOR TELEVISION
"If you take Begbie as he is in the book," he muses, "I would say the character would possibly be unplayable. The audience would be turned off by the guy. You couldn't possibly watch it for that amount of time. But, the way I'd seen the script going, the first half hour of the film is actually quite funny. So what I wanted to create was a sort of cartoon caricature of a Glasgow hard man - well, actually, an Edinburgh hard man, because Begbie's from Leith," - which is to polite, educated Edinburgh (where "sex" is what you put your coal in) what the South Bronx is to Manhattan.
"So, at the beginning, there he is in his pink Pringle jersey and his red stay-pressed trousers and his moustache.
"Then, as the film progresses - the crucial point, of course, is when the baby dies - it gets quite dark. So the clothes become darker, the Pringle becomes black, the suit goes on. And, by the end, you're left in no doubt whatsoever that the guy isn't funny at all, that he's actually extremely dangerous and probably insane."
LOOKING AFTER JOJO
THE FULL MONTY
"For me it wasn't so much about cannibalism for me and the character. There are so many elements contained in the film to be honest I think it takes a second viewing of the film for you to get past the cannibalism and see what's really going on underneath the surface. There's a lot more that the film contains. It wasn't a prerequisite for me to go 'yeah, I want to play a cannibal.' I'm not really interested in the splatter part of the movie. It's an absurd piece, but it's a challenge for me to try to submerge myself to a certain extent that it becomes believable to me and I think that's maybe the difference in this film. I think the characters and performance are actually played for real."
"I think maybe the film is best seen in two viewings -- get over the initial shock value of it and underneath there are some very relevant and very interesting points to be made."
THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH