Top News
WE CONTINUE TO SUPPORT MICHAEL-AN AWARD WINNING ACTOR

Congratulations to the cast and crew of "12 Years a Slave" winning an Oscar for Best Picture

Michael is currently filming "MacBeth"

Watch "12 Years A Slave" and "Frank" in theaters

Watch "The Counselor" and "12 Years A Slave" on DVD available now

Michael is set to star and produce on a film version of the video game "Assassin's Creed"

Completed projects: X-Men, Untitled Malik project

Upcoming projects Assassin's Creed, Prometheus 2, MacBeth,and more!

Header credit here

MFmultiply's Disclaimer


Order region 1 dvds-Amazon store

Order region 2-UK dvds-Amazon Shoppe

Please check the calender for films on TV, Theater, or dvd releases
December 2017
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
     12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31      

Calendar Calendar


Director Neil Marshall

Page 1 of 3 1, 2, 3  Next

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Wed Feb 03, 2010 5:54 pm

http://www.femalefirst.co.uk/movies/movie-news/Neil+Marshall-76149.html

Neil Marshall Story Influence

Today 10:04


Neil Marshall has revealed that his new movie Centurion was influenced by the stories he heard growing up.

His latest picture is historical epic Centurion which follows the failed invasion of Scotland by the Romans.

Speaking to Total Film he said:"I grew up in that part of the world. As soon as I heard about the legend of the 9th Legion I was hooked. What happened to this legion that was so bad? Who were these Picts?

"I've seen Hadrian's Wall - they must have been pretty bad for the Romans to build this massive wall to keep them out. It's like King Long or something...

"What is behind this wall that's so terrifying?"

The movie brings together a strong British cast of Michael Fassbender, Dominic West, Noel Clarke, David Morrissey and Max Payne star Olga Kurylenko.

This is the first movie for filmmaker for Marshall since Doomsday back in 2008 after making his name with The Descent in 2005.

Centurion is released 27th August.

(Don't know what release date that is for. It's April for the UK. Wonder if it's for the US. But the website is from the UK.)
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:30 pm

http://www.talkingfilms.net/ryan-gosling-and-nicolas-refn-team-up-and-drive

Posted on 14. Feb, 2010 by John in Featured, Movie News

Neil Marshall was initially supposed to take on the director’s chair for this one but he had to be sidelined. Now there is news that Hugh Jackman also had to be send home packing.

Drive is a film based on a book by James Sallis novel of the same title. It centers on a stuntman whose already exciting existence is jolted when he discovers that a contract has been put out on his life.

Marshall actually had to leave because of the work on Centurion with Michael Fassbender. This film will be out later this year.

Now Nicolas Winding Refn is all set to take Ryan Gosling on board to make this film happen.

<snipped>
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:39 pm

http://www.moviescopemag.com/2010/03/directing-8/

Insider's P.O.V. - Written by Neil Marshall on Monday, March 1, 2010 14:18
Directing
Tags: Centurion, Neil Marshall
Centurion: Acting in Extremis

The director of Dog Soldiers, The Descent and Doomsday is no stranger to pushing his actors to the limit. But, as he explains, conditions on the Scottish set of new film Centurion saw his cast tested at every turn.

I’ve been very fortunate to work with some of the actors that I have. Not simply because of their calibre as performers, but also because of the collaborative experience I have had working with them. For me, working closely with the actors is one of the most unpredictable and rewarding parts of the whole process.

Give me a set over green screen any day, and give me a location over a set. Some people say a film is made in the edit; as a former editor, I actually disagree. I believe the film is formed in the edit, the story shaped and nuance fine-tuned. But you can’t form anything unless it’s been captured on camera first, and if something isn’t real when you’re shooting it, no amount of editing is going to give it the reality it lacks, and CG-enhancement can’t turn a bad performance into a good one.

The shoot is where the magic happens, in front of the camera. I provide the setting, the circumstances and the motivation, but it’s up to the actors to make it real.

Like catching lightning in a bottle, you’ve got to be able to recognise it and seize it while it’s happening.

(These don't get larger when you click them, but there is one picture of Michael and the director.)





This article continues in movieScope Magazine, Issue 16 (March/ April 2010)
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Wed Mar 17, 2010 2:28 pm

http://www.filmschoolrejects.com/features/sxsw-interview-neil-marshall-and-axelle-carolyn.php

SXSW Interview: Neil Marshall and Axelle Carolyn

Posted by Brian C. Gibson (brian@filmschoolrejects.com) on March 17, 2010 Share

SXSW Film 2010

There was this super secret screening of a film Monday night here at SXSW. Eveyone No one knew anything about it, or what film it even was. It ended up being an exclusive engagement, and a lucky night for the people who had their eyes filled with Neil Marshall’s Centurion.

Anyone who knew anything about Centurion was already labeling it as a ’sword and sandal flick’, and was ready to compare it to films like 300 or Gladiator. First of all, those are very different films than Centurion. Secondly, I liked Centurion better than 300 or Gladiator. The film takes a very different approach than most of the Roman battle films. It is dark, dirty, real and focus’ more on the soldiers than the glory of the generals. You get to see some awesome guerrilla warfare, the fear and suspense of survival and some of the bloodiest and visceral kill scenes of recent memory. I will further support this claim, as it will surely cause some words, by saying that Michael Fassbender is one of the finest actors in Hollywood today. Fassbenders performance is greater than Russel Crowe’s in Gladiator (Which I never thought was Oscar worthy anyway), and Fassbender exhibits a better range and versatility than Gerard Butler. Sorry Gerard, I do love your work though.

The film takes a story that has been passed down as myth, and pays tribute to soldiers that gave their lives only to be erased from history. Director Neil Marshall tells this story in a really great way that makes you cheer from one moment to the next, but also creates a great connection to these characters and their plight. I think this is Marshall’s most ambitious film to date. He takes Olga Kurylenko and creates a character within the film that doesn’t speak a single word. Most of the Pict warriors hardly spoke as well. Essentially the film was crafted around the chase, and did a wonderful job. Not to mention, along with Kurylenko, Axelle Carolyn also represented the female gender with strong and intimidating performances. I would also say that this is one of the more accessible films that Marshall has released so far, in the way that their is a great story and endearing characters fixed within a brutal tale of survival of the fittest. Not to say that the film holds anything back, it is still an awesome bad-ass bloodbath.

Check out our 16 minute conversation with Neil Marshall and Axelle Carolyn.

Click link above for video interview.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Fri Mar 19, 2010 4:15 pm

http://www.fearnet.com/news/interviews/b18519_sxsw_2010_exclusive_interview_neil.html

SXSW 2010 Exclusive Interview: Neil Marshall and Axelle Carolyn
Today 10:02 AM PDT , by Todd Gilchrist
Neil Marshall Axelle

Over the opening weekend of Austin, TX’s storied South by Southwest Film Festival, a diverse group of horror directors including Ti West, Matt Reeves and Neil Marshall converged on the Austin Convention Center to participate in a panel entitled "Directing the Dead” which was moderated by FEARnet film critic Scott Weinberg. Following the panel, FEARnet was lucky enough to catch up with some of the filmmakers, including Mr. Marshall, for some one-on-one time to talk about their current and upcoming projects.

Marshall also attended the festival to offer the first-ever public screening of Centurion, a period epic in the vein of Gladiator starring Inglourious Basterds co-star Michael Fassbender. The filmmaker sat down with one of his stars (who is also his wife), Axelle Carolyn, earlier in the week to discuss his affection for genre properties, which culminates in Centurion. Meanwhile, the duo also offered their thoughts about The Descent: Part 2, which is scheduled for release on DVD in April but made without their participation.

FEARnet: You clearly have an affinity and an affection for genre material. With each different genre you conquer, Do you have an impulse to operate at a certain scale

Neil Marshall: I think I inherently bring something to it which subverts the genre, whether it’s the language or the characters or the way it’s shot, or trying to do something with a cold and bleak feel to it as opposed to a hot and sweaty feel to it [like in Centurion]. I guess I inherently kind of bring my own British sensibility to it or sense of humor to it – that’s common throughout the films – but for me, I want to make something that’s cinematic. I want to push what we can do with the money that we have and put everything on screen; I don’t want to waste money on anything that’s not going to be seen, so with the help of my crew and my cast, we make the biggest movie we can possibly make, but not lose sight of the characters and the story. I guess Lawrence of Arabia is the perfect example for me – it’s the biggest epic thing that you could ever imagine, but still it’s an incredibly personal story. That’s what we try not to lose sight of; everything else is backdrop, it’s gravy, but let’s get it out there and spend the money wisely.

FEARnet: What’s next for you guys?

Marshall: I’m currently executive producing a film that Axelle has written, The Ghost of Slaughterford, which we’re going to shoot in the UK in June. That’s really kind of an exciting prospect, producing for the first time – which is a whole new world of stress and trauma. I’m attached to direct next a project called Burst, which Sam Raimi’s producing with Lionsgate and Ghost House, which is this 3-D horror movie about people exploding, amongst other things.

FEARnet: Is there a director lined up for Slaughterford?

Marshall: We’re currently in negotiations and discussions with a couple of directors at the moment, but he don’t have it fully settled yet.

FEARnet: Axelle, can you talk about the tone of the film, or your approach to the story?

Carolyn: Sure. It’s kind of a throwback to old British films, a kind of cinema that Britain hasn’t done in a very long time that has influenced all of those British filmmakers but no one is really doing any more. There’s been so many movies like The Others or The Devil’s Backbone or The Orphanage, but they all come from Spain, strangely enough, and they’re all kind of influenced by those old ghost stories that were written and shot in Britain, and we kind of thought let’s bring that back to the UK and make something that’s very old-fashioned and traditional, but at the same time uses the techniques which we have to scare people and just make it really atmospheric. It’s kind of a mix between those films and The Wicker Man and Hammer films, and it’s got that kind of flavor as well.

Marshall: Very much like Dennis Wheatley novels – the stuff that goes on in the dark recesses of the English countryside in small villages. It’s called The Ghost of Slaughterford because we stumbled upon this real village called Slaughterford and it’s just this astonishingly atmospheric, creepy little place, and it lives up to its name, totally.

FEARnet: Are mainstream audiences still susceptible to that kind of atmospheric horror? It seems like those sort of films appeal to a more limited niche of viewers.

Carolyn: I certainly hope so. All we can do it try, but the problem is that to a degree, because those films were made in Spanish, we don’t know if they would have reached the audience if they had been made in English.

Marshall: The Others is probably a good example. But being scared, and certainly being scared by ghosts, is kind of universal and timeless, and I don’t think there’s any problem in terms of reaching an audience. Everybody’s going to identify with that.

Carolyn: It’s different, obviously, but Paranomal Activity was not exactly fast-paced either. It was also a slow burn and creeping tension and it worked.

Marshall: And no gore. It was like after the wave of torture porn, to see a film that was just genuinely atmospheric and scary, it got everybody.

FEARnet: Are you guys diehard horror fans, or do you find that you’re more discriminating and like fewer of them as you see more?

Marshall: [Axelle] has watched a hell of a lot more of them than me, but I don’t know. We’re slightly discerning but we do go to a lot of the horror festivals and try and keep up on what’s new.

FEARnet: You didn’t participate in The Descent: Part 2. Was that an easy property to relinquish control of?

Marshall: So much to it was out of my hands that there was little I could do to steer it any way, so it was difficult to let go – I mean, there’s just no getting around it. I mean, if it had been up to me, there wouldn’t have been a sequel anyway. It didn’t need a sequel, but they chose to make one, and so I kind of didn’t even really supervise from a distance. I haven’t even seen the finished film. So yeah, it’s pretty tricky to watch something you created taken off in a different direction than you would have liked, but it was unavoidable.

FEARnet: But is there a legitimacy to what Matt Reeves has said about his Let the Right One In remake – that the original still exists, so it doesn’t matter what comes afterward?

Marshall: Perhaps in the case of Descent 2, because what happens in it kind of undermines the ending of the first film, yeah, I think that does kind of affect it slightly. I mean, yeah, the first one obviously does still exist, but the knowledge that there is a second one affects your perception of it. so that’s an unfortunate side effect, but in terms of what Matt was saying about remakes, I think he gave a really good argument.

Carolyn: From what we understand happens in the sequel, the first one is all about her trying to find the exit; she has to find a way out, and she doesn’t find one. In the second one, she’s suddenly outside, and no one really knows how, and it feels like it’s a bit saying, you know that first one? Yeah, that didn’t really matter.

Marshall: It wasn’t so tough after all. So yeah, it does kind of annoy us.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Mon Apr 12, 2010 8:29 pm

http://www.bloody-disgusting.com/interview/641

Centurion: Director Neil Marshall

By: David Harley

"Boasting savagely violent battle scenes and an adrenaline fueled chase through the breathtaking Scottish highlands, CENTURION is set during the war between Roman soldiers and Pict tribesmen during the 2nd century Roman conquest of Britain. Fassbender stars as Quintus Dias, Roman centurion and son of a legendary gladiator who leads a group of soldiers on a raid of a Pict camp to rescue a captured general (West). The son of the Pict leader is murdered during the raid, and the Romans find themselves hunted by a seemingly unstoppable group of the Pict’s most vicious and skilled warriors, led by a beautiful and deadly tracker (Kurylenko), who are hell bent on revenge."

David Harley: Coming off of DOOMSDAY, which is the exact opposite of a film that’s grounded in reality with its exploitation angle, did you find it hard to transition to something more reality based when making CENTURION? What made you decide to move toward something less outrageous?

Neil Marshall: The transition was actually very easy; it’s all about the story and the characters and whatever was going to fit in that particular world. DOOMSDAY was the epitome of outrageousness because I threw in everything and the kitchen sink. This is a much more controlled piece in dealing with these characters and the situation. It naturally fit that world I wanted. It has a sense of humor about it but that’s just from the characters. So as far as transitions go, it was fairly easy.

BD: CENTURION follows a Roman legion that’s completely wiped from the history books. How did the story formulate for you? What sparked everything?

Marshall: Well, the myth is that the ninth legion marched into the Scottish mist and vanished without a trace. So, that raises a question: how could that have happened? I wanted to explore what could have happened and wanted it to be a combination of them actually being massacred and also the idea that it’s a Roman cover-up. Politically, it makes sense that the Romans would rather it be a mystery than seeming to be getting their asses kicked by a bunch of Picts because, you know, news would spread around the Empire and it might not necessarily look good for them. So, I thought it might have to be a sort of mixture of the two.

BD: Where did you shoot the film? Because it’s a really beautiful looking film, not only because of the cinematography and presentation but because of the natural beauty of the locations.

Marshall: We shot on location in the highlands of Scotland and a little bit outside of London. It was a stunning place to go shooting. The mountain ranges during the winter so the snow and the ice made it freezing and it was challenging but we pulled it off.

BD: Your leading man, Michael Fassbender, just came off of INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS and between that, 300, CENTURION and the upcoming JONAH HEX and KNOCKOUT, he’s really starting to cement himself into the action genre.

Marshall: We kind of sensed that Michael was going to breakout. He had just finished shooting INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS when we started shooting – I still haven’t seen it yet. We milked him for all the stories we could (laughs). Casting him was really straight-forward; he came on very, very early in the process. He was really keen to be on board. I’ve liked him since before DOOMSDAY. We actually auditioned him for a role and that didn’t work out but we just really wanted to work together.

BD: The other big standout to me was Olga [Kurylenko] character, The Wolf; she’s the epitome of a psychotic, vengeful warrior and she’s pretty much the most bad-ass character in the film. I know for her, she must’ve had a little bit of experience with physical training before CENTURION – because she was in QUANTUM OF SOLACE and HITMAN – but in general, how much training did all the actors have to go through for their roles? The choreography of the fight sequences look extremely intensive.

Marshall: Well, actually Axelle went through the training so she could answer it better. You said that The Wolf is the psycho character but I don’t think she is at all. She knows what she’s doing; she’s very justified in what she’s doing. Axelle’s character Aeron, on the other hand, is completely psychotic. (laughs) She just loves killing Romans for the sake of killing Romans, there’s no revenge about it. She just likes doing it.

Axelle: The training was essentially horseback riding. It was the main thing we all did. Olga had never done any, so she only had two or three weeks to get into shape for that.

Marshall: We had weapons training as well with the stunt guys.

Axelle: And choreography for every fight sequence, but that was during the shoot. But, it was just a question of who personally would decide to go the gym and learn how to handle the weapons to try to make it look like you had done that all your life.

Marshall: Just trying to get everybody into being a Roman or Pict. We wouldn’t set them up against each other but they would train together. Just different weapons, different disciplines. The Picts tend to use axes and spears a lot more, while the Romans preferred to use swords and I wanted to try to differentiate between the two so there’s different styles of fighting and training.

Centurion

BD: There are a lot of really solid action scenes in the film but the one that really stood out was when the Romans are walking th rough the woods and they’re encroached on both sides by these flaming haggises. (all laugh)

Marshall: Yeah, that was just one of those great sequences that was amazing to do because we did it with real fireballs rolling down these hills towards these guys. (laughs) We did do a bit of replication to make it look like there was as many as there was in the shots but we definitely did use real fireballs, there was no CGI in there.

BD: It looked real to me, but I was like no, there’s no way.

Marshall: They were about a meter to a meter and a half in diameter and they were built out of these kind of steel cages things that we soaked in petrol – or something like that – and put on these ramps at the top of the hill and set on fire and rolled down. All these stunt guys had to just basically stand there and wait for them to hit and see what happens. (laughs)

BD: Oh, wow.

Axelle: And, you know, it’s always raining in that area. So, you can do that and the core is not going to burnt.

Marshall: Yeah, and there was this great risk that we were going to set fire to the whole area, but luckily nothing happened. (laughs)

BD: Speaking of stunt guys, how many stunt men and women were employed on the film? Warrior after warrior is slaughtered in every scene, you must’ve actually employed an army of them.

Marshall: There were a lot of stunt guys. I mean, if you really look carefully, you can see that a few of the people getting killed are the same stunt guys twice, just with different disguises. (laughs) One day they’re a Roman and the next they’ve got a wig and blue paint and they’re a Pict. But, we had a big stunt team and the extras during the big battle sequence as well. I mean, I’m amazed nobody got hurt because they were just given these weapons and set up in different sides and were told to just start knocking the hell out of each other and they were really getting into it. Some of them were even Roman battle re-enactment people and things like that, so they do this every weekend where they dress up as Romans and go out and fight each other. So, it wasn’t entirely out of control but there was an element of risk. But, basically, it was a big stunt team because we had so much going on.

BD: Did the location ever pose a risk? Because, like you said, you shot in the Scottish Highlands and it rains all the time; it’s freezing cold.

Marshall: So many of the locations we filmed at were on top of cliffs and in the freezing cold wind, rain, whatever and we had actors in ice cold rivers. The biggest stunt, I guess, is the cliff jump when the stunt guys jumped off these cliffs into, again, a freezing cold river. They had to make sure that they jumped out a certain amount of space – I believe four meters – before they started to fall because there was an area of shallow water beneath them that if they didn’t get over, they would have landed and broken their legs.

Axelle: Some of the locations were so remote and so insane that getting there was the hardest part. (laughs) There were Land Rovers having to drive through rivers with all the actors in the cars and one of them broke down with Olga in the car. The water started to go up and the car was stuck with the nose in the water and she was just stuck there and had to wait for someone to lift her up and take her out.

Marshall: It’s a bit of a hairy experience when you’re driving through a river in a Land Rover and the river starts to come up over the bonnet. And, we had these little Norwegian troop transport things; these little tanks which we used to ferry the cast and crew up to the top of this mountain in the snow.

BD: I want to go back to the Wolf for a minute. She’s a mute in the film; a mute warrior. What gave you the idea to present her anguish and past in that way?

Marshall: I thought it was really interesting that she had had her tongue cut out by the Romans and it was something that I hadn’t seen before. I just wanted to make her the silent type.

BD: As you go through the film, the characters learn more and more about her by ways of other people that explain her backstory, what happened to her growing up, and her experiences.

Marshall: I can’t remember exactly when I had the idea of making her a mute but it just seemed to fit so basically the dichotomy of the fact that she is this lethal killer but she’s also totally justified in her actions.

Centurion

BD: Aside from working on CENTURION, you were also the executive producer on THE DESCENT 2, which is being released in the states shortly. Is that a universe you ever thought would be visited again and would you stay active with the films if they turned into a franchise?

Marshall: Ultimately, kind of like the second one, it won’t really be up to me; it’ll be up to the distributors and production company behind it. For me personally, it didn’t need to be revisited a second time. The first one had everything it needed, but they wanted to make a second one and it got made regardless.

BD: I know you have two upcoming films coming in some sort of production that are going back to the horror genre – BURST and SACRILEDGE. Which one of those is up next?

Marshall: The one that I know I’m tackling next is the film that Axelle has written – GHOST OF SLAUGHTERFORD – which I’m producing and we’re going to shoot that in June, hopefully. And then BURST is probably going to go next further on in the year with Sam Raimi in 3-D. People exploding in 3-D should be a lot of fun. SACRILEDGE is still in the cards and I need to write more, but that one’s still a way off.

BD: Was BURST written with 3-D in mind? Or was that an idea that came about while you were writing?

Marshall: Oh yes. This has been a 3-D project since it was first discussed.

BD: And you’re doing that with Ghost House?

Marshall: Yeah, I met Ghost House through Lionsgate. I had a relationship with Lionsgate following the Descent and they had wanted to work with me again and they had this idea for a project called BURST and I had my own idea for another story – which I pitched to them – and we ended up kind of joining the two together to make what is now BURST 3-D.

BD: With the 3-D effects, are you going for camp or are you going for something serious and kind of use the effects for layering and some exploding heads?

Guy: I’m not entirely sure yet. It is – in its nature – gratuitous because there are a lot of people exploding in 3-D, so I don’t think I can take it too seriously. (all laugh)

BD: Is there anything beyond that? Have you done any casting or scouting of locations or anything?

Guy: No, we’re not nearly far enough for that.

BD: Going back to GHOST, what inspired you to take a stab at writing?

Axelle: It’s inspired by the trip we took through the British countryside where we saw a sign that read ‘Slaughterford’ and we were like, “Wow, that is such a cool name.” We went to see the village and it looked like it was this incredibly typical British place you would see in all the Hammer films that have no church but it looked kind of creepy at the same time.

Marshall: The village sign was all kind of covered in ivy and it seemed all grown over. Everything about it was just creepy.

Axelle: Yeah, and we really wanted to work something that took place there and it’s the story of a woman who moves into a house there after her husband dies and the villagers start warning her about the house, saying that the house might be haunted. She later realizes that it is but instead of running away, she starts talking to the ghost.

Marshall: And instead of being terrified of the situation, because she’s already sort of had a brush with death, she’s kind of fearless about it so the relationship develops between her and the ghost. But then things start to take a nasty turn.

Axelle: It’s kind of THE OTHERS meets THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR, with a hint of THE WICKER MAN. It’s meant as an homage to all those old British movies.

Marshall: Yeah, there’s a lot of weirdness in the countryside and just seeing places called Slaughterford makes you kind of want to start asking questions about that. (all laugh)
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:08 am

avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Fri Apr 16, 2010 8:23 pm

Interview with Neil

avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Sun Apr 18, 2010 10:27 pm

http://www.filmshaft.com/filmshaft-exclusive-director-neil-marshall-on-centurion/

Mon, Apr 19 2010 | Published in FCG, Features
Filmshaft Exclusive: Director Neil Marshall On Centurion
By: Martyn Conterio

Neil Marshall began his career with the breakout hit Dog Soldiers. A film that mixed laughs with horror to great effect. It got him noticed in the industry and he followed his debut with a claustrophobic nightmare entitled The Descent. The Newcastle-born filmmaker decided to further his ambition with Doomsday – a film that paid homage to exploitation cinema and John Carpenter-like movies that proliferated shelves of video stores across the land in the 1980s. It didn’t do very well, but it’s a perfect slice of b-movie craziness.

Centurion sees a much different change of style and pace on the surface, but it remains quintessential Marshall underneath. There’s gore, blood and laughs as well as a truly unique historical setting. There’s never been a movie about the construction of Hadrian’s Wall before. Marshall’s film is part-chase thriller, part history lesson.

Filmshaft caught up with the director of Centurion recently in central London. In person Marshall is friendly and clearly has a mischievous sense of humour – he did get a bunch of actors running around in zero degree temperatures for their art!

What was the inspiration for Centurion?

I think it’s been in my blood from an early age. I’m from Newcastle, Hadrian’s Wall is there and I’ve been surrounded by Roman history from childhood. It was unavoidable. As soon as I heard about the myth of the 9th Legion marching into Scotland and disappearing I was just hooked. It must be about six years ago now that I came up with the story and developed it into a script.

Was it always imagined as a chase thriller?

Yeah, it was always intended. The 9th Legion would be the start of the story, but the rest was the survivors trying to find their way home.

The opening credits sequence really sets the film up well. Was it a post-production idea?

It’d always wanted to open the film big but I never quite knew how. The credit sequence came about through the course of editing the film. We had all this beautiful footage and the guy who designed the titles for me concocted this notion of having the titles hanging in mid-air like lumps of granite or bronze and it ended up looking really epic.

The cinematography is also very different from the usual sword and sandal movie.

When you think of sword and sandal films you think of the desert…Romans and dust – all that kind of stuff. I wanted to make it anti-blood and sand…more blood and mud! You’re dealing with the western frontier, so it was really grey and cold and bleak and wet. That’s what I wanted to create. When we were grading it we put a blue tint on everything just to make it feel cold.

Were the actors prepared for all that?

I gave them fair warning! I told them how rough it was going to be and they were still up for it. They got stuck in. All the shivering you see on screen is real.

Were all the production crew wrapped up warm?

(Laughs) Yeah! Off screen we had on big parkas! But there was never a complaint. They knew what they were getting into.

I’ve read you wrote the lead character with Michael Fassbender in mind. What appealed to you about him as an actor and what he could bring to the role of Quintus?

I think he’s one of the finest actors working out there now. He’s so dedicated to his craft. He’s also pretty much willing to do anything. He’s an incredibly brave actor and what he’s willing to do (laughs). Running topless through a blizzard in minus eighteen, he’s willing to do that, or jump in a river. He’s just an astonishing actor.

Another great element of the film is the camaraderie between the actors, particularly David Morrisey, Michael Fassbender and Liam Cunningham. How did David Morrisey get involved, it’s not usually the type of film he’d star in?

That was just a wonderful piece of luck that he was available. He offered him the role and never for a million years thought he would take it. But he came back to us and said he’d love to do it. I don’t think he gets offered this kind of role very often, so it was like ‘okay, great’. I think it was the combination of the script and working with Michael Fassbender, I’d like to say working with me (laughs), Dominic West and the rest of the cast. I think it really appealed to him to get stuck in. And it paid dividends because as you said the camaraderie, was played beautifully on screen.


The film has an interesting dynamic between the traditional concepts of heroes and villains. You could say both sets of characters – the Picts and Romans – switch between good and bad. Was that what you wanted to do with the story?

Absolutely! The Picts are defending their homeland and the Romans are invading. I thought it was integral that each character had shades of grey and capable of good and evil. Okay the Romans are, if we want to make a comparison, are like our squaddies over in Afghanistan. I’m sure they don’t want to be there and just come home.

There are epic levels of gore and violence. Is it always fun coming with ideas for death scenes? There’s one shot of a guy having a spear rammed into his mouth and it’s insane!

Yeah, you’re throwing sharp objects at people so nasty things are going to happen (laughs). I didn’t want to shy away from that. I definitely brought my horror movie sensibility to it and wasn’t going to shy away from splashingblood around!

What you working next?

I’m attached to a project called Burst, which is being produced by Sam Raimi. It’s a real horror movie about people who explode.

Years ago I used to read those articles you wrote for Total Film that discussed your attempts at financing projects between Dog Soldiers and The Descent. Does financing films get easier now you’ve done a few more films?

It probably would have got easier if there was no recession! Just when it was about to get easier it stopped. It depends on the project really. I’d like to think it gets a little bit easier. I’m always mixing projects and you never know which one you’ll do next.

You also wrote about a zombie movie set on an oil rig called Outpost. Will you ever make it?

Back when I was developing it nobody was making zombie movies and now everybody is making zombies movies! It’s not so original any more. So, I don’t know. Maybe not.

Maybe leave it a few years and do it then?

Maybe.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Tue Apr 20, 2010 8:33 pm

From Empire Films:

avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Wed Apr 21, 2010 6:34 pm

http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/features/8111217.Picting_a_fight/

Picting a fight

10:42am Wednesday 21st April 2010

Newcastle director Neil Marshall endured freezing conditions to bring his film about the Romans and the Picts to the screen. He tells Steve Pratt how Hadrian’s Wall inspired the story and why he doesn’t spare the blood and guts.

HADRIAN’S WALL has figured a lot in Neil Marshall’s life. He was born and grew up in Newcastle, at one end of the wall, and then, for several years, worked in Carlisle, at the other end. “I commuted along the route of Hadrian’s Wall and used to spend a lot of time driving along the old Roman road – and you get a lot of inspiration on dark and stormy days,” he says.

“I wondered what was up there that was so scary for the Romans to build such a big, long wall. That’s a pretty drastic measure. That raised my curiosity levels and then I heard about the myth of the Ninth Legion.”

This is the tale of an army of Roman soldiers who marched into Scotland and just vanished into the mist, never to be seen again. Researching the historical facts, he formed his own theory about what might have happened – and wrote his latest movie, Centurion.

Marshall began making films with his mum’s Super 8 camera, at home in Newcastle, at the age of 11, going on to film school at Newcastle Polytechnic and then working as a freelance editor in his home city before making his directorial debut on the werewolf horror movie, Dog Soldiers.

He followed that with The Descent, in which a group of female potholers are attacked by cave-dwelling cannibalistic creatures, and the apocalyptic science fiction horror film, Doomsday.

Hadrian’s Wall got a mention in that, too.

In Centurion, it’s still being built as the survivors of the Ninth Legion flee from the savage Picts, running for their lives from the snowy Scottish Highlands to the safety of the wall.

Michael Fassbender, acclaimed for his portrayal of Irish hunger striker Bobby Sands in the film Hunger, leads a cast that also includes The Wire star Dominic West, David Morrissey, Noel Clarke and former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko, as a particularly violent Pict.

As he has in the past, Marshall makes a relatively small budget go a long way and the Scottish Highlands make a stunning backdrop for the blood and guts action. Scotland is one of the writer-director’s favourite places to film, although conditions, including snow and below freezing temperatures, were uncomfortable for the crew and actors.

“We were filming in the middle of February in the Cairngorms and it was positively Arctic,” he remembers.

“The first day we were 3,000ft up a mountain, it was minus 18 and the poor cast had to dig their way into a snowdrift in a blizzard. I wanted to punish my cast to get that feel and look.”

The actors were willing to go the extra mile for him. In the first scene, Fassbender is seen, shirtless, running and stumbling through the snow pursued by the Picts. When Marshal says the actor is “very dedicated” he means it – Fassbender wanted to perform a leap from cliffs into a river that the Roman soldiers make to elude capture. He wasn’t allowed to do it.

“He was begging to do the cliff jump, but that was a little bit too dangerous,” says Marshall.

“There was one day when it was raining all day and everyone on the crew got completely soaked but, on the whole, I absolutely loved it.

I got a kick out of the weather conditions.”

Many will want to mention Centurion in the same breath as Ridley Scott’s blockbuster Gladiator, although Marshall’s budget couldn’t be more different, just £7m – “probably the size of Gladiator’s catering budget”.

“The only thing we have in common with Gladiator is Romans. My film is more akin to a western. They’re people on the run from the posse, like in an old John Ford western. The Romans are the cowboys, the Picts are the Apaches and the Scottish Highlands stand in for Death Valley.”

His cast is higher profile than in his previous movies, although Olga Kurylenko, who starred opposite Daniel Craig’s James Bond in Quantum Of Solace, not only had to act without any dialogue – her character has had her tongue cut out – but fight and kill without remorse as a woman avenging the murder of her family.

“It’s a challenge for any actor where they’re deprived of speech. She can only express herself through action and violence, but that’s the nature of her character.”

IN one scene, her character hacks off the head of a Roman soldier. As in previous Marshall films, the blood and gore level is high, with limbs hacked off, axes embedded in heads and bodies slashed with swords.

“I wanted it to be fairly honest in its brutality.

Those were not pleasant times. I wanted to tell that as a more matter of fact thing which, unfortunately, means lots of blood and guts,” he says.

Centurion also offered him the chance to have a crack at another cinematic genre, a sword-and-sandals movie, but he can recognise links with his past work. “I wanted to do a historical outdoor adventure.

But certain elements do continue the trend of my previous films – action orientated and a strong group of characters, so I suppose it conforms from that point of view. But it’s not a horror movie, it’s a fantasy movie.”

If somebody calls it a “typical Neil Marshall movie” – and they have – he’ll take it as a compliment.

“I will do something without blood one day,” he adds, although he doesn’t have a romantic comedy waiting to go before the cameras.

He’s working on a film version of the Bodie and Doyle TV series The Professionals, but his next film will be a 3D horror piece called Burst, the very name of which conjures up all sort of bloody horrors. Exploding people, anyone?

“That’s definitely going to have blood and guts in it,” he says, somewhat unnecessarily.

■ Centurion (15) opens in cinemas on Friday.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Wed Apr 21, 2010 10:57 pm

avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:20 pm

http://www.obsessedwithfilm.com/interviews/exclusive-neil-marshall-on-his-roman-epic-centurion.php

Exclusive: Neil Marshall on his Roman epic CENTURION
Posted by John Nugent on Apr 22 2010.

It’s a bright sunny March day in central London when I meet the British director Neil Marshall at the press junket for his latest, “Centurion”. The plush members club where it is held is in stark contrast to the film Marshall is here to promote, a brutal Roman epic set in Scotland, full to the brim of snow, mud, and blood.

Marshall was deep into a heavy day of promotion but seemed happy to answer my questions. His Geordie accent somewhat faded, he nonetheless clearly remains proud of the surrounding areas of his youth, and “Centurion” seems to be a labour of love. He revealed to me some of the more memorable moments on set – watch for yourself:



Last edited by greyeyegoddess on Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:29 pm; edited 1 time in total
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:28 pm

http://www.femalefirst.co.uk/movies/Neil+Marshall-8498.html

Director's Chair: Neil Marshall

Today 09:57

Neil Marshall is returning to the big screen this week after two year with his new movie Centurion.

Despite penning Killing Time back in 1998, which went on to be directed by Bharat Nalluri, he made his directorial debut in 2002.

And it was Dog Soldiers that really grabbed everyone's attention as Marshall became a hot new British filmmaking talent that everyone should keep an eye on.

Dog Soldiers followed a squad of British soldiers who are sent out on manoeuvres into the wilds of Scotland.

They thought the worst they had to worry about was missing the biggest football match of the decade, but what should have been a routine military exercise turns into a nightmare for Sergeant Harry Wells (Sean Pertwee) and Riflemen Lawrence Cooper (Kevin Mckidd), Joe Kirkley (Chris Robson), Terry Milburn (Leslie Simpson), Phil Witherspoon (Darren Morfitt) and Corporal Bruce Campbell (Thomas Lockyer).

But something's out there ... and it's hungry. Very hungry. And hairy ... very hairy.

Despite being made a on a very modest budget the movie was a big success and has gained a huge cult following.

And Marshall showed that he wasn't a one hit wonder when, three years later, he was behind the camera again for another horror movie The Descent.

This time is was a group of girls who became the hunted as they tried to survive on a caving expedition.

On a daredevil caving holiday, six women friends are unexpectedly trapped underground when a rock fall blocks their exit.

Searching the maze of tunnels for a way out, they find themselves hunted by a race of fearless, hungry predators, once humanoid but now monstrously adapted to live in the dark.

As the others battle for their lives, Sarah (Macdonald), still recovering from a mental collapse brought on by the recent deaths of her family, is fighting for her sanity.

When old secrets are revealed, the friends turn on one another, causing the group to implode. Betrayed and desperate, Sarah realises that to make it back to the surface, she must become as savage as the creatures themselves.

The Descent was even more successful than it's predecessor and was met very well by the critics, the twist at the end is particularly good.

The movie went on to be successful in America and it cemented Marshall as one of the best British directors currently working in the industry.

However his next project Doomsday, which was released back in 2008 was not as successful as his previous movies.

Marshall has been away from the camera for two years but returns this week with a change of pace as he tackles a historic piece with Centurion.

AD 117. The Roman Empire stretches from Egypt to Spain, and East as far as the Black Sea. But in northern Britain, the relentless onslaught of conquest has ground to a halt in face of the guerrilla tactics of an elusive enemy: the savage and terrifying Picts.

Quintus Dias (Fassbender), sole survivor of a Pictish raid on a Roman frontier fort, marches north with General Virilus' (West) legendary Ninth Legion, under orders to wipe the Picts from the face of the earth and destroy their leader Gorlacon.

But when the legion is ambushed on unfamiliar ground, and Virilus taken captive, Quintus faces a desperate struggle to keep his small platoon alive behind enemy lines.

Enduring the harsh terrain and evading their remorseless Pict pursuers led by revenge-hungry Pict Warrior Etain (Kurylenko), the band of soldiers race to rescue their General and to reach the safety of the Roman frontier.

Marshall brings together a great cast of the film including Michael Fassbender, Dominic West, Noel Clarke, David Morrissey and Olga Kurylenko.

While it may be a change of genre for the filmmaker Centurion is still just as brutal as he told Total Film: "I always meant this to be a brutal film. I wanted to show blood for what it is. I had no intention of glossing it all up and making it super stylised."

And the director possibly has a couple of other projects in the pipeline in the form of Sacrilege and Burst 3D.

Centurion is released 23rd April.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:30 pm

http://www.femalefirst.co.uk/movies/movie-news/Neil+marshall-79172.html

Neil Marshall Likes To 'Blend' Genres

Today 09:50

Neil Marshall has revealed that he likes to 'blend and cross genres' when making movies.

And he is back on the big screen this week with a historic themed movie, quite a shift from the horror films he has made in the past, with Centurion.

Speaking to metro the filmmaker said: "I see myself more as an action director. All right, I do enjoy intense, bloodthirsty action but I like to blend and cross genres. I don't want to be too predictable.

"I always say Dog Soldiers is a siege or a soldier movie with werewolves, not a werewolf movie with soldiers.

"The primary element is making the soldiers authentic - then we can add fantasy on top of that reality."

Centurion brings together a great cast of Michael Fassbender, Noel Clarke, Dominic West and David Morrissey and is Marshall's first movie since Doomsday back in 2008.

"It's like Braveheart from the English point of view. Or like The Last Of The Mohicans meets The Warriors - or like Gladiator meets Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid.

"I used to watch Westerns on TV with my dad and to me Centurion is very similar to an old John Ford cavalry movie, with the Romans as the cavalry and the Picts as the Apaches.

"Those movies would now be seen as incredibly un-PC. We're all rooting for the cavalry who are committing genocide on the Native Americans.

"I'm doing the same kind of thing in that I'm telling the story from the invader's point of view but I want you to root for the individuals not their politics."

Centurion is released 23rd April.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 24, 2010 5:24 pm

http://screenrant.com/neil-marshall-professionals-niall-55943/

Neil Marshall Directing ‘The Professionals’
Director Neil Marshall, the man behind the forthcoming Centurion, will direct a big screen adaptation of 70’s show The Professionals.

British cult film director Neil Marshall, the man behind Dog Soldiers, The Descent, Doomsday, and the forthcoming Centurion, is set to direct a big screen adaptation of 70’s show The Professionals.

The original show was the British equivalent of Starsky and Hutch – only with a harder edge. It followed the adventures of Bodie and Doyle, two agents who worked for the fictional CI5.

The show starred Lewis Collins and Martin Shaw as Bodie and Doyle – and Gordon Jackson as their long suffering and perpetually grumpy boss Cowley.

Speaking of the film Marshall said:

“It’s going to be a hard-hitting action movie. I always loved the show. It has one of the greatest theme tunes ever and a really great central premise. I just thought: this is going to make a great movie.”

The director went on to explain:

“The slogan, or kind of the tagline for the film, is ‘Fight fire with fire’ and that was their whole thing… Primarily it’s going to be an exciting movie, but there’s an inherent political angle on the story.”

While the original show was gritty and low budget – it looks like the new film version won’t be skimping on action:

“We want to contemporise it but keep everything that made the original great, just turn it into a real wham-bam rip-roaring adventure movie. And a really great buddy movie: these guys are like Butch and Sundance or Riggs and Murtaugh. But this is a British buddy movie, which I don’t think I’ve seen before…”

Sounds like it could be a pretty cool update.

The original show hasn’t dated all that well – it was given the remake treatment a few years ago on British television, but the attempt failed to recapture the magic of the original.

That said, Marshall loves to pay homage to past pop culture. His last few films have “homaged” everything from Alien to Zulu, by way of Escape From New York and Mad Max, with at least twenty other films thrown in for good measure.

My only worry is that Marshall’s films have shown diminishing returns. Dog Soldiers is without a doubt a genre masterpiece, while The Descent was a good horror movie. However, I found Doomsday to be slightly muddled – and it failed to add up to the sum of its parts. It’s easy to see his 1980s low-budget action film inspiration – but the film was disjointed and choppy.

Doomsday was a noble failure, but a failure all the same.

Marshall shouldn’t be too far outside of his comfort zone with The Professionals, but it’s going to take a while for it to hit screens – as it’s only in the scripting stage.

No casting has taken place yet, but if I were in charge, I’d have Daniel Craig step into the shoes of Lewis Collin’s tough Bodie, and for the sheer hell of it I’d cast Jude Law as the replacement for Martin Shaw’s Doyle. He’s practically the spitting image of Shaw!

I’m sure that there’s a million other casting choices out there – so let us know your choices!

More on The Professionals as we get it.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 24, 2010 5:40 pm

http://thefilmstage.com/2010/04/23/neil-marshall-getting-professional/

Neil Marshall Getting ‘Professional’
Posted on 23 April 2010 by Jordan Raup

The Descent and Doomsday director Neil Marshall has lined up another project. With Centurion hitting theaters in the UK today, he told Empire details on an update to The Professionals.

Originally a British TV show, The Professionals will be “a hard-hitting action movie.” Marshall says he “always loved the show. It has one of the greatest theme tunes ever and a really great central premise. I just thought: this is going to make a great movie.”

The original 1970’s series “saw professional (natch) tough guys Bodie (Lewis Collins) and Doyle (Martin Shaw) busting crime and terror at home and abroad for law enforcement outfit CI5.” Marshall says he will update it to fit contemporary times, but wants to “keep everything that made the original great.” It will be a “real wham-bam rip-roaring adventure movie…and a really great buddy film.” He explains a little bit more below.

“They deal with anti-terrorism, assassinations, political intrigue. The slogan, or kind of the tagline for the film, is ‘Fight fire with fire’ and that was their whole thing… Primarily it’s going to be an exciting movie, but there’s an inherent political angle on the story.”

Marshall is also attached to the 3D horror film Burst, produced by Sam Raimi.

Centurion hits theaters late August in the US.

What do you think about Marshall directing The Professionals?
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:11 pm

http://www.digitalspy.com/movies/at-the-movies/a213736/qa-neil-marshall-centurion.html

Q&A: Neil Marshall ('Centurion')

Thursday, April 22 2010, 9:12am EDT

By Stella Papamichael
Growing up in Scotland has helped to shape the vision of writer-director Neil Marshall. His breakout film Dog Soldiers (2002) turned the Scottish landscape into a hellish place populated by werewolves and his 2005 hit The Descent was mostly shot on home ground, though the beasties are native to American soil. His latest, Centurion, is a more open celebration of the Highlands with Michael Fassbender playing a Roman soldier who leads a band of soldiers through this hostile territory.

DS caught up with Marshall to chat about living on the land with a cast of tough guys and why his penchant for horror films also comes through in this ancient world thriller.

Click link above to go to interview
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:21 pm

http://www.indielondon.co.uk/Film-Review/centurion-neil-marshall-interview

Centurion - Neil Marshall interview
Neil Marshall directs Centurion

Interview by Rob Carnevale

NEIL Marshall talks about some of the many challenges of making Roman chase movie Centurion, including tackling the freezing conditions and researching period detail.

He also talks about the possibility of a sequel and working with former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko and rising British star Michael Fassbender…

Q. How hard was it to get Centurion made?
Neil Marshall: Very hard in so many respects… trying to do a film of this kind of ambition and scale on what is essentially a pretty small budget by Hollywood standards. We really had to make every penny count. So, that was hard. And obviously logistically we only had seven weeks to shoot it. Whereas, on Braveheart I think Mel Gibson had six weeks just to shoot one battle! The re-shoots of The Wolfman were eight weeks. So, how much we had to do in just seven was nuts. So, it was tough on everybody and it was definitely the most difficult shoot that I’ve done – physically as much as anything.

Q. Likewise, for the terrain. It’s breathtaking but I imagine it was pretty hard to shoot in?
Neil Marshall: Yeah well first day of shooting we were 3,000ft up a mountain in a blizzard, it was -18, and our cast had to dig into this snow drift with their bare hands. The scene was basically them sheltering from a storm, but they did it for real [laughs]! Dig… or we’re going to freeze. All the shivering is for real. So, they suffered, they really suffered! But the crew suffered too because the actors, when they finished the take, would go off and hide in the van. We all had to stand out in it all day! So, it was balanced. We had our parkas and our thermals on. But after you’ve been standing in the snow all day your feet start to get a bit nippy!

Q. When did you first hear about the legend of the Ninth Legion?
Neil Marshall: It was a mate of mine told me in a pub in Newcastle one afternoon. He said: “Have you heard about this legend?” So, I asked him what it was and he said: “They marched into Scotland to deal with The Picts and they vanished without a trace.” I was intrigued. And I’d grown up surrounded by Roman history; I lived in the shadow of Hadrian’s Wall and such like, so I found it immediately compelling. I wanted to know more about it. But the more you research about it… that is the myth! There’s not much more to it. And the more you find out, the more historians have debunked it and spoiled everyone’s fun. The 9th didn’t really disappear. But I like the myth and I stuck with that.

Q. So, having been a fan of that period in history, was it fun to research further and get the detail right?
Neil Marshall: It was but there’s not a lot you can do because there isn’t anything to research about the myth. I did a lot of research about Romans in Britain, but the actual specifics of the 9th Legion once they set off to deal with The Picts are a bit vague. We know that they were attacked but probably not massacred. As for The Picts, there is no written history at all. So, what we do know about the Picts we then had to embellish, or conjure up some kind of realistic concept of what The Picts were. It’s great because it leaves a lot to the imagination. But I also tried to apply logic to it because I didn’t want to make them some kind of hackneyed bunch of bikini-wearing lunatics. I think I applied logic to it… it’s the middle of winter, we’re in Scotland, so what are you going to do? Are you going to run around half naked, or will you wrap yourself up in deer skins and wolf skins and try and keep warm.

Q. It’s also a very interesting film in that there’s no clear good or bad side? Michael Fassbender is clearly the hero, but both the Romans and the Picts are as capable of acts of evil as they are good…
Neil Marshall: Yeah, I thought it was about shades of grey really. We’re telling the story from an invaders point of view. And yet, half the soldiers within that army basically just want to get home. They’ve had enough of this place and probably never wanted to be there in the first place. So, you root for them in the same way that you support our boys over in Iraq at the moment. If you want to make those comparisons, they’re just soldiers following their orders and they’re stuck in this really s$#! situation. But they’ve got these highly motivated Picts who are totally justified in wanting to get them out of their country. So, that makes the edges very blurred, which I love about this kind of genre.

Q. Do you think the Pict women would have been as ferocious as Olga Kurylenko’s character? Or is that embellishment?
Neil Marshall: I don’t doubt it for a moment. This is the age of Boadicea [or Boudica] and she didn’t hold back when it came to killing Romans. If Boadicea was doing that in the south of England, then I think that the hardy Northern girls would have been getting stuck in as well.

Q. You have a reputation for portraying women as kick-ass heroes who can give as good as the men, and sometimes better…
Neil Marshall: Absolutely, and I think they should be the equals of the men within certain limitations. I think you’ve got to keep it vaguely real. They use different skills against the men, whether it be speed, agility, all that kind of stuff against brutal strength. They’re not going to win an arm wrestling competition but they might stab you in the eye before you have a chance to think about it! It’s just cunning and guile and stealth.

Q. Did you surprise Olga with how rigorous the training was beforehand?
Neil Marshall: I think she was taken aback by the level of violence initially and she as a bit coy at first about that. But then she really got stuck in and loved it. There was a scene where she has to chop a guy’s head off and she found that tiring but a lot of fun [laughs]. We did it as close to real as you possibly can, because we had this wonderful mannequin that our make-up effects guy had hired, which had this fleshy kind of skin on the outside and silicone. Inside of that is blood and foam that looks like flesh. But as soon as you hit it with a real axe, the blood just pumps out like a real body.

Olga had to get in the river, hold it by the hair and hack this guy’s head off… and it must have taken about 30 or 40 chops. She had to stop halfway through because she was exhausted! We were like: “Keep going! Keep going!” At first, she wasn’t keen on being sprayed with so much blood, but then she really got stuck into it and ripped the head off. She then tripped and the head dropped in the river and it looked kind of messy and awkward. I was like: “That’s going in the movie… I love that!” But she said: “Can I do it again to make it look really neat?” But I said: “No, I don’t want neat; I want messy!” She was great to work with.

Q. When did you get Michael Fassbender? And what appealed about him?
Neil Marshall: Hunger was definitely coming up but he was already attached by then. He got attached very, very early and stuck with us through thick and thin while we were trying to get the money in place. That took a little bit of a while, but he was there and dedicated to it. He’s just one of the finest actors of his generation… he’s just astonishing and the fact that he was so passionate about doing it was wonderful in return. He just lives that part.


Q. I gather he wanted to do all of his own stunts?
Neil Marshall: He wanted to jump off a cliff… the idiot [laughs]! It was a huge cliff to jump off into this icy cold river and you had to jump four metres out before you were able to drop because there was a shelf in the river that if you landed on, you’d break your leg. So, you had to jump out far enough to hit the deep water. The stunt guys were doing it and were terrified and Michael was constantly going on at me, saying: “Can we do it, can we do it? I just want to do it.” I was like: “No, you can’t. If you miss, the movie is screwed.”

Q. Talking of that jump, as well as the obvious nod to Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid, Centurion is as much an homage to the Westerns as it is a swords and sandals chase movie…
Neil Marshall: Butch Cassidy definitely, pretty much all of John Ford’s cavalry movies… She Wore A Yellow Ribbon, Fort Apache. The Romans are the cavalry and The Picts are the Apaches. The comparisons are pretty obvious but, to me, Roman Britain was the equivalent of the Wild West. That was their wildest frontier, so the Western analogy works perfectly in that sort of sense.

Q. Would you revisit it? Would you do a Centurion 2?
Neil Marshall: I’d love to do something more in the world. I’ve no idea what… but definitely something. Perhaps The Picts attacking Hadrian’s Wall or something.

Q. Has anything been discussed? Or does it depend on box office?
Neil Marshall: We’ll see what happens, yeah.

Q. Did you ever imagine that one of your earlier movies, The Descent, would get a sequel?
Neil Marshall: No, because I wrote it with the intention that it should never have a sequel [laughs]! The idea was that it rounded itself up… I didn’t think it would have a sequel. Its success caused that but I wasn’t involved in the sequel at all. It is an odd one though.

Q. Do you find it fortuitous to be releasing Centurion now given the revival of the swords and sandals movie… with The Eagle of the Ninth and Clash of the Titans among others headed our way?
Neil Marshall: There does seem to be this year, but it is just a weird coincidence because nobody is hopping on anybody else’s bandwagon. You don’t try and do that… you want to be the only one in the marketplace, not one of many. Ourselves and Eagle of the Ninth deal with the Ninth Legion but are totally different stories. They’ve been running in parallel for the past six years and it was pure chance as to which one got into production first. As it happened, we did and they quickly followed, but we’re out first. If there’s an appetite for these movies, then great… I just hope that people see Centurion because the tone of it is very different from anything else that’s out there.

Q. What’s been the most pleasing or surprising reaction you’ve had to Centurion so far?
Neil Marshall: Well, any reaction that is positive. I love the fact that everybody is responding to it. I met Harry Knowles in Texas… he’s obviously a legendary figure right now but I’d never met him. So, he came along and did the Q&A of the screening and he loved it as well. So, that was great… a really nice response to get. But generally, I’m just overwhelmed that everyone seems to like it.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Sun Jun 13, 2010 2:16 am

http://cinemascream.wordpress.com/2010/06/12/neilmarshall/

Neil Marshall Retrospective

Posted on June 12, 2010 by Wynter Tyson / CinemaScream

As it was such a sunny day down here in the south I spent most of the day indoors at a Neil Marshall retrospective being held at the Screen Cinema as part of the Winchester Film Festival. The screening included all of Marshall’s films: Dog Soldiers (2002), The Descent (2005), Doomsday (2008) and his latest release Centurion (2010), a film about the fate of seven Roman soldiers stranded behind enemy lines in ancient Britain when their Legion is wiped out by Picts.

…anyway, instead of a straight forward review of Centurion I thought that I might talk a bit about Neil Marshall and his films as a whole.

Firstly, I’m going to be honest and admit that I like the idea of Marshall’s films more than I like the films themselves. Off the top of my head I can’t think of another British filmmaker that is trying to make big, brash, action-orientated Saturday night movies with a strong British flavour. Sadly, watching his films reminds me of old fashioned hand-drawn video boxes; the covering is glorious but the contents often fall short. Plus there is a staggering lack of originality (characters go somewhere, get in trouble then try and escape whilst director plunders his DVD collection) but, unlike Tarantino (another man for whom the word ‘homage’ has a very plagiarist-like whiff), there is an underlying sense of honesty about what he is doing and, from that, a nice sense of throw away fun… which is fine if not slightly underwhelming.

Whilst Dog Soldiers has retained the low budget charm, re-viewing Doomsday is something of a chore. The elements feel older than the inspiration and, like an album by an ageing rock band, you can’t help but be distracted by the old-hat aesthetics whilst hankering for the superior influences.

Centurion suffers from the same problems as echoes of faster, leaner and better films wash over it but, although a superior film to Doomsday, it’s problems go further than this as Marshall squanders audience goodwill by building up to but denying one character the glorious death that the gods of the genre require and mechanically sacrificing another so that the main man (well played as ever by Michael Fassbender) can be engineered into a rather contrived happy ending. Yes, such things happen all the time in film but here the former felt like being short-changed whilst the noise of plot gears shifting overpowered the latter like a vuvuzela drowning the excitement out of a football match. On top of this is the problem that the Picts aren’t quite the invincible uber-warriors expected from the frequent descriptions with Olga Kurylenko’s Etain coming off as a mere image when she should be a force of nature. In The Warriors (1979) this story worked because of the sheer number of potential enemies, in Judgement Night (1993) it was the ‘fish out of water’ situation faced by the naive protagonists whilst Apocalypto (2006) graphically reinforced the fate that being caught entailed and kept the pace up. Centurion walks when it should run, stops when it should keep going and, most irritatingly, talks when it should show.

Of all his films I would say that The Descent remains the stand out effort. It is enjoyable, scary and suitably vicious with a nice psychological bent but, most of all, the earlier sequences that cover the caving are masterful in their use of (lack of) space and the widescreen format. However the downside of this sure-handedness is the nagging feeling that, no matter how scary the monsters, a more interesting film would have gone with the claustrophobic nightmare / escape movie set up when the characters find themselves lost… but then we may not have got the fantastic ‘baptism of blood’ moment.

…so there you go, that is my penny worth on Neil Marshall but despite all the moans above I will still get excited by the news of a new film because they always sound great.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Wed Jun 30, 2010 2:39 am

http://www.movieweb.com/news/NEyXzHCG6HRLCG

EXCLUSIVE: Director Neil Marshall Talks Burst 3D, The Sword and the Fury and More!
June 28th, 2010
Neil Marshall talks about a few of his long rumored upcoming projects

English writer/director Neil Marshall first made a name for himself on this side of the pond with his critically acclaimed 2006 Horror film, The Descent. He followed that up in 2008 with the now fan-favorite film Doomsday, which was inspired by an assortment of different genre movies including Mad Max, Escape From New York, Excalibur, The Warriors, The Omega Man and Children of Men. Now the writer/director returns with a new film entitled Centurion, which opens on August 27th and stars Michael Fassbender (Jonah Hex, Inglourious Basterds), Dominic West (300), and Olga Kurylenko (Quantum of Solace). In addition to the new film, Marshall has a long list of intriguing projects in the works and recently, when we were speaking to him about his latest movie, we had a chance to also ask the accomplished writer/director about five of these long rumored films and just which ones he is working on and which ones are on the back burner for the time being.

First up, we wanted to know about Outpost, a film that Marshall announced he was going to do after The Descent but then put on hold. The premise was originally described as "zombies terrorizing an oil rig" and could become a satirical political film now, given the current real-life situation going on in the Gulf of Mexico. "Outpost isn't happening at all," confessed Marshall. "The thing was with that, when I first came up with the idea nobody was making Zombie movies and now everybody is making Zombie movies," he said. "So I don't really have any interest."

Next, we asked the director about The Eagle's Nest, a World War II set action-adventure film that was first described as a hybrid of Die Hard and The Remains of the Day, which would also act as a tribute to films like Where Eagles Dare and The Eagle Has Landed. "The Eagle's Nest is my absolute dream project," answered Marshall. "That's an ongoing thing. I recently just did a new draft of the script and I'm getting the budget and schedule together. So I'm trying to package everything together to really do it justice," he explained. He finished by describing the tone of the film. "It's a little bit of Where Eagles Dare, Indiana Jones, James Bond and its kind of an espionage story set during WWII but its not really a war movie as such it's a full on action-adventure."

We followed that up by asking Marshall about his long-rumored post-Camelot film, The Sword and the Fury, which would take place thirty-years after the death of King Arthur. "Yeah, that's another ongoing project, which I need to do a re-write of the script on. It's a medieval heist movie," Marshall explained. "It's basically a sequel to the Arthur legend because there are so many characters from the Arthur story that are still alive at the end of the story. Pretty much every society, every culture in the world has some version of the Arthur legend so everybody knows it, certainly in the western world everybody knows King Arthur but nobody knows what happens next. That's the key to it, I want to know what happens next. I want to know what happens to Guinevere and all the survivors," Marshall continued. "So I wondered what that would be like if this tyrant managed to get hold of Excalibur, which at that time is like the equivalent of having a nuclear weapon. It's the sort of power that anyone who owns it is undefeatable. (The film) is about Guinevere and the Grail Knights hiring this band of thieves to steal it back. So I'm going with that one," Marshall concluded.

We continued by grilling the writer/director about Sacrilege, a Western/Horror film set in the time of the Gold Rush that was once described as Unforgiven by way of H.P. Lovecraft and drawing inspiration from John Carpenter's The Thing. "Sacrilege is probably on hold for a while but it is something that I definitely want to do," Marshall confessed. "Obviously, the problem with Westerns is that they're tricky at the best of times so this one is pretty twisted," he explained.

Finally, we asked Marshall to tell us about the status of Burst 3D, a film that he is attached to direct about a group of travelers who are stranded in a blizzard and are being attacked by an entity that makes them spontaneously combust. "Burst 3D I guess is the closest to being made out of all of them," he said. "I'm developing that with Sam Raimi producing it. That's a 3D, people exploding Horror movie. Full on blood and guts, that sort of thing."
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Sat Jul 03, 2010 3:23 pm

http://hollywood-spy.blogspot.com/2010/07/multiple-man-to-appear-in-x-men-first.html

Speaking to "MovieWeb", Neil Marshall, the director of this summer's Roman epic "Centurion" with Michael Fassbender, has revealed that one of his future projects will be "The Sword and the Fury", a post-Camelot film, which would take place thirty-years after the death of King Arthur. It will start with a tyrant stealing the magical Excalibur, after which Guinevere and the Grail Knights will be forced to hire a band of thieves to steal it back. Waiting in Neil Marshall's list of the possible projects is also "The Eagle's Nest", a World War II action-adventure film, an espionage story described as the mix of Indiana Jones, James Bond, "Where Eagles Dare" and "Die Hard".
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:25 pm

http://www.killerfilm.com/spotlight/read/neil-marshall-and-axelle-carolyn-had-a-bloody-good-time-making-centurion-37382

Neil Marshall and Axelle Carolyn had a bloody good time making Centurion
Submitted by Jason Bene on July 30, 2010 – 6:58 am

eil Marshall’s newest film, Centurion, premieres on VOD, XBOX and Amazon on July 23 and opens in theaters on August 27, 2010 from Magnet Releasing. Killer Film had the opportunity to sit down for a lengthy chat with filmmaker Neil Marshall and actress Axelle Carolyn on the brutal epic tale.

Jason Bene: Can you talk about the genesis of the project?

Neil Marshall: It originated as such an organic process. My education about Roman history began in the U.K. I grew up in New Castle in the North East of England, which is at one end of Hadrian’s Wall. As such, when I was at school we took a lot of trips to the wall and the Roman forts and all of these kind of ruins. You have to ask yourself the question, what was so horrendous up there that the Romans built a sixty mile long, thirty-five foot high stone wall across a country? It’s kind of a big deal. It took them years to build. What was it for? Who was it to keep out? These guys must have been pretty terrified up there. Then I heard the legend about the Ninth Legion, about this entire legion of Romans that marched into what was Caledonia. I just immediately became hooked with that story, and so let’s try to figure out what might have actually happened to them. Why the legend exists.

Jason Bene: How did you get the part as Aeron in Centurion?

Axelle Carolyn: I originally auditioned for the part of the Roman woman that you see at the end. It was a slightly bigger part than what it ended up being in the film. Somehow I was offered the part of the warrior. I absolutely loved it. I loved the idea. I was going through the script and seeing what I was going to get to do. I was like okay, this is pretty cool. To go back to the blood, when I saw the death that I was going to get I was like, alright, I can totally do that. It gets such a big cheer from people, I loved it. It was the attraction to do something really physical. A lot of action. A lot of stunts. A lot of fights. A lot of horse riding.

Jason Bene: Did you need any kind of special training to ride the horse?

Axelle Carolyn: I have some horseback riding training. I was reasonably confident on a horse before that. I was going to spend six weeks on a horse everyday so I just had to go through that. I had done horseriding when I was a kid. I had three or four seasons and I was fine. I had some stunt training for the one-on-one fight. And some archery training to make it believable that I knew how to handle a bow and arrow.

Jason Bene: Wars are always visceral battles. Was it important to show just how bloody they can be, or was it an easy transition because your previous films have been violent anyway?

Neil Marshall: [Laughs] It was easy because I like doing that kind of stuff. It’s a lot of fun doing the blood and guts. I had a lot of fun doing that on Dog Soldiers, The Descent, and Doomsday. It’s great to hear the audiences reaction to it as well. It’s one of the big kind of kicks to it. But also, with this kind of subject matter, I wanted to be honest about how brutal those times were and show these guys charging each other with sharp sticks or big blades and show the blood and guts that would flow from that. I didn’t want to have a soft touch.

Jason Bene: Was 300 or Braveheart in the back of your mind when making the film?

Neil Marshall: I would say it [Braveheart] was in the far back of my mind. I didn’t want to do any kind of beautiful slo-mo. I didn’t want to do it green screen. I wanted this to be out in the rain and in the mud. I wanted it to be kind of feral and brutal and more realistic than that. 300 is very stylistic film because it it based on a graphic novel. I wanted to make almost like a documentary approach to the violence.

Jason Bene: How did you go about casting the film?

Neil Marshall: With any project it’s very important to get the best possible cast. I’m inherently more interested in high quality actors than necessarily big names. I’m sure there were maybe more commercial names out there who could have been brought into a budget like this, but they wouldn’t necessarily have the acting chops to pull off what we needed. I knew I was going to put the cast through physical hell, and it was going to be a really tough shoot. I needed people that were going to be two hundred percent dedicated to getting through it all. I was aware of Michael Fassbender and Dominic [West] having worked with them before on different movies and I was a big fan of their work. It was a great opportunity to get them in there. They have done three or four films together now. They had a great kind of repoire as well, which was really great to get together on screen. Getting the likes of Olga and David Morrissey and some really, really strong actors in there. It just brought a richness and texture to that ensemble and they were a joy to work with.

We did fight rehearsals and all of that kind of stuff but the bootcamp thing doesn’t work for Romans. It was the anti-300 thing as well. I didn’t want the guys to be so ripped that they look like they spent all of their time at the gym. Michael [Fassbender] has an amazing physique anyway. Dominique [West] has a more naturalist physique. He’s in good shape but he’s not like ridiculously ripped and all pecs and a sculpted figure. I thought that would look kind of ridiculous. He actually looks like a regular guy.

Jason Bene: At the Los Angeles Film Festival screening Neil joked about if you took a drink of alcohol every time your character nailed somebody in the back with an arrow you be drunk off of your feet. Was that your character’s specialty, or was there an invisible bullseye on everybody’s back.

Axelle Carolyn: It just happened. It was really weird. It was something we didn’t realize when we were shooting. Most of the time when you shoot you have the target on the person you are shooting obviously. We didn’t put it together. When we started editing when I first saw the film, it was eight or nine different people. It ended up being a joke. The whole thing for how my character was fighting was trying to find what was realistic and worked for a woman. There’s a lot of people when they saw that Olga Kurylenko, a Ukranian model was cast as a warrior woman, and thought how scary can that be. It was a lot about that it looked realistic and that we knew where to hit. That we knew how to use full advantage of our strengths and the weapons that we had.

Neil Marshall: It wasn’t so much about being strong physically, it was about being brutal and cunning.

Jason Bene: You always cast very strong women in your movies. James Cameron is a pioneer in that department. Do you think that the meek female character is the thing of the past?

Neil Marshall: Not entirely. You can look at something like Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and having this screaming, hysterical woman that was done more as a parody in that film. But you can never get away with doing that now. I don’t know if audiences would want to see that. I don’t think women in the audience want to see themselves depicted that way. I think its changed. I don’t necessarily think it’s a good thing all women in movies should be butch and basically trying to be like men. I don’t think that is their best strength.

Axelle Carolyn: Raiders of the Lost Ark is a perfect example.

Neil Marshall: ‘Raiders’ is a perfect example of having a feisty woman but she’s not trying to be a guy. I think that’s the big difference. They can be strong but as soon as you start turning them into guys in a dress you kind of miss the point.

Axelle Carolyn: I think it all depends on the context too. The lucky thing here was the ‘Picts’ historically had women fighting within their ranks, so it was just great you could use that. One of my dreams is to be in a Western someday because I love the whole horseriding thing. I can do all kinds of tricks on the horse. I just wish I could do that, but it’s just never going to work out because historically that would make no sense.

Neil Marshall: This was good because it was the age before sexism. This was before sexism was invented. In a weird way there was more equality then.

Jason Bene: The tribal attire looks like an extension of the apocalyptic clans in Doomsday. Was it a conscious decision that they were similiar in a warrior kind of way or was it a coincidence?

Neil Marshall: It think it’s more coincidence. A lot of warrior tribes do similiar kind of stuff with war paint and tattoos. They utitilize visual ways of making themselves look more fierce. From everybody to the Comanches to Aztecs to the jungles of South America or the Middle East. They utitlized those techniques. I guess it was an unvoidable coincidence that in order to do it authentically it was going to have similarities. When I did Doomsday I didn’t necessarily know I was going to do this film next. But this film really required that it be authentic, so I couldn’t avoid that.

Jason Bene: Dario Argento was known for ‘offing’ his wife [now ex-wife Daria Nicolodi] in his movies. Do I see a pattern with Neil’s films with you?

Axelle Carolyn: On Doomsday I was helping out on the special effects make-up. I just had to try that make-up on. I really wanted to die in films. I’m such a huge horror fan and I love and live for horror films. It’s always been a dream to die in horror films. It kind of how I started getting into acting. I want to die in films. I get to die in this one too.

Jason Bene: The editing in the movie is well done. A lot of action movies today do the whole herky jerky camerawork. Did you purposely slow things down so the battle sequences could be appreciated?

Neil Marshall: I got quite a lot of criticism on Doomsday for it being overcut. I wanted to very specifically go the other way. I went with an old school style of being happy to sit back and let the film play. Only if necessary did I ever go in and get close-up coverage. The battle scenes are a bit more frenetic because we weren’t able to stand back and show rows of extras because we only had two hundred. We had to kind of play that one a bit more tight. That was also the nature of that battle. It needed to be intense and frenetic. I think what I learned from Doomsday was knowing when to show constraint on the editing and also pacing it better. Going slow when you want to go slow and then speeding up for the action sequences.

Jason Bene: How is your working relationship on set? The director has a lot of pressure to get the film done and finish on time and not go over budget.

Axelle Carolyn: To be quite honest, with being the wife of the director, I didn’t want people to know that so they wouldn’t judge me. There are so many assumptions. I actually had to audition. I had to go through the entire thing just like everyone else. I kind of made a point to not go and speak to Neil too much. Most of the time he would set up the shot and tell me what was going on then I would do my thing. If there was something he didn’t like he would tell me quite quickly. He tried to focus on other actors too. Just try to make sure that we don’t spend too much time together. Neil is quiet and relaxed.

Neil Marshall: It was very much a case of when we were on set together we both had our jobs to do. On set, Axelle was the actor and I was the director. The relationship didn’t get in the way of that at all.

Axelle Carolyn: It was very different from Doomsday where I was just hanging out. I had the special effects to do, but on the nights where there were no special effects I would just hang out and we would chat. But it was fine because I didn’t have a job there. Other than those specific times.

Neil Marshall: It only made me feel slightly guilty on the days that we called her in at six o’clock in the morning and then not actually shoot her until six o’clock in the evening for about five minutes.

Axelle Carolyn: I had to spent twelve hours in that wig. It took a hour and a half to put on.

Jason Bene: What is up next for you?

Neil Marshall: I don’t know exactly what is going to be next. I have a few things in the pipeline, one is a project called Burst, which Sam Raimi is producing. It’s a 3D horror movie. It should be a lot of fun.

Jason Bene: Is it a spontaneous combustion film?

Neil Marshall: Not really. People burst but there’s no combustion. It’s like a pressure burst. I can’t give away anymore about the storyline. I will tell you there’s aliens involved, but beyond that I say no more.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:29 pm

avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Admin on Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:33 pm

http://chud.com/articles/articles/24658/1/THE-CHUD-INTERVIEW-NEIL-MARSHALL-CENTURION/Page1.html

THE CHUD INTERVIEW: NEIL MARSHALL (CENTURION)

* By Devin Faraci

Neil Marshall is exactly the sort of filmmaker the genre world needs more of. He's got a sharp eye, he's a great storyteller, he can work with actors, and he's got an imagination that feels like it was fed by the pages of Fangoria and GoreZone. Marshall's been building a filmography that feels like the best movie marathon you've ever been to, with his films jumping from genre to genre but retaining the same visceral, pulpy fun feel.

Centurion is no different. A chase movie based on the true story of the disappearance of the Ninth Legion in Roman occupied Britain way back when, Centurion has great actors like Michael Fassbender and Dominic West having lost of fun while hacking and slashing. The film is now available on demand, and will be hitting select theaters in the weeks ahead. You can read my review of the film here.

Recently Marshall came through Los Angeles and I sat down with him and his wife Axelle Carolyn, who appears in Centurion as one of the savage Pict warriors hunting our heroes down. This was the first time I had met Neil and Axelle, but they knew me through my tireless cheerleading of an unfairly maligned Marshall film...

Axelle: You were a supporter of Doomsday?

I'm a huge supporter of Doomsday. I always describe it as a great mix tape of a movie.

Neil: That sums it up pretty well, I think.

Centurion feels like your most political film.

N: Considering I've never seen any of my films as political, this would be a step in that direction.

By default. Any time you're telling a story like this, in a time like today, it's going to end up feeling political. Was it the resonance with current events that appealed to you about this story?

N: It was something that never occurred to me until I started working on it and started getting into the story. It's so comparable to what's going on in the world today - it has imperialism and guerilla war and all those elements. But I also made a conscious decision not to make it a blatantly political movie. I thought, 'The allegory is there, let's just leave it at that. They'll either take it at face value or they'll see deeper.' And I think that's how an allegory should work. I'd heard other stories that the other film about similar subject matter - The Eagle of the Ninth - I heard they were deliberately giving their Romans US-style crew cuts and really hammering home the comparison and I thought it was too in your face and wrong. I mean, the comparison is there!

You just pick it up automatically.

A: It's interesting that there are a lot of people who, whether they've seen the film or not, criticize it based on politics. They're like, 'Oh we're supposed to root for the Romans? They're the invaders!' They're missing the point. The film isn't saying Rome should have invaded Scotland, it's not saying the United States should go to Iraq, it's saying that whether we think [the war] is good or not, we just want the soldiers back home. It's looking past the uniform and the political side of it and see those individuals who are trying to make their way home.

While this might be your most political film, it's also another ass-kicking Neil Marshall movie. It's mostly practical, right?

N: I use CG to enhance what I have. In the case of the Legion itself we only had about 100 Romans and we multiplied those into 3000, but there are no animated extras or anything. It's all real guys. And that goes for blood and guts as well - it's got to be about 90% practical and I added some blood in post, specifically in some of the battle sequences.

A: Interestingly you don't plan the scene thinking 'We'll add the blood later on.' You do it all practical and then you look at it and think 'We need more blood.'

N: 'This is not enough, let's add more.' For all the rest of it there are some matte paintings and things, but it's all to enhance, not to replace. The moment CG replaces reality it starts to fall on its face a bit. But it's a great tool for that.

It's interesting that you use the digital blood to enhance. Some filmmakers use digital blood because it's easier on the day - it's a faster reset - and when you use digital blood if the MPAA has a problem with the wetness, you can tone it down.

N: I'm not thinking about the MPAA when I'm making it at all. We set out to make a film that was bloodthirsty and violent.

What are some of the big influences on this film? One movie I thought about while watching was Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, with the Super Posse.

N: Definitely the Super Posse sequences were a huge inspiration. And it is Westerns more than anything else - it's not really Roman movies. It's mainly John Ford cavalry movies; Fort Apache and Rio Grande. That was the main inspiration - it's a Roman Western.

Which you can see in the big landscapes you shoot. Which is funny because I think a lot of people might see guys with swords running around a big landscape and think Lord of the Rings, but it feels more like Ford.

N: There wouldn't be a Lord of the Rings without John Ford, as far as his mastery of shooting landscapes. If you're going to have guys with swords in a mountainous landscape you're going to get a Lord of the Rings comparison, but that movie didn't invent that. I grew up with Excalibur and Conan and that has similar kinds of things in it as well. These inspirations are ingrained it me but I didn't set out... with Doomsday I set out to make a homage, with this one if the comparisons are there it's unconscious. With the exception of I think one shot which I did totally take from Butch Cassidy, the one scene where they're climbing up the hill and the camera pulls back and you see the riders in the far distance. It's the scale I love in Western movies that you don't really see in British movies. You don't get that outdoors wilderness adventure in the UK, it just seems absurd. This could be the first of its kind!

Speaking of Excalibur, I came across a list you did for Film Comment where you listed your favorite guilty pleasure movies and that was on the list. I was stunned that you would consider that a guilty pleasure. Do you consider any of your films guilty pleasures?

N: I think Doomsday has become a bit of a guilty pleasure.

How do you define a guilty pleasure?

N: I think it's a film that a lot of people laugh at, don't take seriously or think are bad. There are a ton of films that people think are terrible that I genuinely like. I like things like The 13th Warrior and we both like Reign of Fire and Waterworld. They come up for a lot of slagging off, but I enjoy them. Waterworld I appreciate because it's one of the last big films that was made that was completely practical. There's not much CG - there's some comping here and there but all the stunts and stuff are real. I like that.

A: One of the things about all those films is that they're completely shameless in the fact that they embrace the genre. They do it to such an extent, and I think that's what Doomsday does, being completely a love letter to those kinds of films. I think that it's so full on that it turns some people off.

Doomsday does divide people. How does that impact you as a filmmaker - do you look at it and go, 'Well, I won't go there again,' or do you say, 'At least some people liked it.'

N: Personally I'm really proud of it, and it was a great experience to do. I'm proud that it has a small hardcore following as opposed to no following at all. I don't think I would do it differently. The litmus test with Doomsday is whether you appreciate the rabbit exploding it or don't. If you think it's gratuitous and I should be shot for it - for the few who think I actually killed a rabbit - and then the rest think it's hilarious and outrageous and that's the audience that gets the movie.

You've written every feature you've directed.

N: So far, yeah.

Could you direct somebody else's script?

N: Absolutely. I'm just waiting for the right script to come along. I've never been closed off to that idea, but I have had this backlog of scripts I've written that I want to get made, and I've needed to make them. But I'm not closed off to the idea of directing someone else's work. As a director it's a great experiment that I haven't tried yet.

With Dog Soldiers and Centurion you've captured the guys bonding thing very easily. What's the secret to that?

N: I think it's something you've got to be in tune with as a director anyway, but it also comes from the casting and finding people who can get on anyway. Then finding an environment that allows them to do that. Once you've thrown them in an ice cold river, that's a bonding experience. We did the same thing on Dog Soldiers - the guys on Dog Soldiers, by the end of that shoot, they would have fought and died for each other. I'm not sure it's the same with the Centurion guys, but they went through rough physical experiences and forged a bond together.

We've heard you're doing a 3D movie about spontaneous combustion - is Burst next?

N: We'll see. I never have a clue which is going to go next until someone calls me and tells me the money is there.

Are you excited to do the 3D?

N: I'm excited and terrified at the same time. It's coming in for as much criticism as it is praise. This is the way that we want to go with this thing, and it makes sense as it's about people exploding so we can have fun with that. I see it as a challenge, a way of doing it that could change the minds of the naysayers a bit. It also has to work as a 2D movie. Certainly the editing point of view will be interesting as well - you have to edit it in a certain way, taking into account the extra dimension. I'm looking forward to it.
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Director Neil Marshall

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 1 of 3 1, 2, 3  Next

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum