Obi-Wan is Obi-Wan ... McGregor turning into a Guiness..?

Discussion in 'Revenge of the Sith (Non-Spoilers)' started by Adali-Kiri, Apr 22, 2001.

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  1. pes Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2001
    I posted this on another thread but it probably belongs here. This is from a long interview with McGregor in the Sept 8 Birmingham Post. This is just the relevant Star Wars bit:

    (about AotC)...

    'It was just the same thing, the same hard work and the same difficulty trying to react to things that aren't there. It's weird. I do the film and I go away. I am so uninvolved in it.'

    So uninvolved in fact that he didn't even know it was to be called Attack of the Clones until a journalist asked him for his reactions. Rather less diplomatic than about his musical opinions regarding Elton John, McGregor is reported as saying it was a 'terrible, terrible title.'

    'I don't think it's a good one,' he reiterates, safe in the knowledge he's contracted to appear in the third episode whatever George Lucas toes he treads on.

    'I mean, how would you feel about being in a film called Attack of the Clones. It all sounds a bit Flash Gordon. But then maybe that's the point, that it's an episodic sci fi series. Maybe it does make sense and I'm just being all moany.'

    Given his comments about being bored senseless on the set of The Phantom Menace, you get the feeling that the whole Star Wars experience hasn't quite been what McGregor imagined it would be.

    'I don't even feel it's made any difference to my career. I'm just a character in Star Wars. The nice thing about it though is the kids. I love them coming up and talking to me about it. It reminds me of how I felt about the first three. They want to know all the details. Did you really kill Darth Maul? Did you cut him in half? How does your light sabre work? I love all that.'

    He pauses for a moment before adding, 'it's a bit weird though when adults have the same questions.'
  2. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    - Ewan seems to prefer stuff like Moulin Rogue because it is 'more challenging' to him as an actor.
    - Ewan seems to be frustrated with SW because it's 'such hard work with screens and stuff that's not there'.

    I can not possibly be the only one to spot a slight contradiction here.
  3. pes Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2001
    I don't know Adali-Kiri, there are parts of my job that are really hard work but that I love. There are other parts that I just despise even though they are not very difficult to accomplish. These parts become "hard work" only because I hate to do them.

    E.McG. said in an interview once that the part of film making he enjoyed most was working with other actors: "I work with other actors. I love it. I love working with actors." I think that is probably at the root of his disastisfaction with the Star Wars experience. He's acting with nothing. You can see that in his comments on the newest AotC "making of" video.
  4. naw ibo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 1999
    star 5
    Ewan is a very "people" oriented person. It's something comes across with him all the time. One of the things he was talking about in one of the controversial articles that really upsets him is that because he is considered a big name actor the crew workers on the set have a tendency to treat him differently now. Ewan's always been well known for just being a regular guy in the way he treats the other workers on his films.

    Remember in a way Natalie and Hayden are lucky--they are having a romance in this film, they are probably always going to have each other to act against. We may find Ewan may very well end up "acting" with a lot of characters who just aren't there.
  5. Grey1 Host: 181st Imperial Discussion Group

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    It's quite difficult acting with other people who are not really in it, so you have to act 'against' them, to make the whole thing look better although your fellow actor does not give a damn about quality (you learn that lesson at school's theatre). So if you cannot act with people although you have to, it's always hard. And it's not that much fun.

    A one-person-play is different, as it is another experience entirely. But for a film like this, you have to behave like there's really someone and something around. You do not fuel the viewer's imagination; that's done by ILM. So it's a hard job for you, I presume. Not that I did any blue screen work at theatre ;)

    Look at SW. It's all blue. Almost NO sets you could pretend are real. All is digital. As this makes for astonishing imagery, as we witnessed in TPM, filming the characters is close to become a by-product. I'm not sure if visiting such a set would be that great, let alone act on one.

    Let's face it - watching SW and making SW are two different things, and may have a different degree of joy for the participant.
    AS Ewan said, it will be cool to see the stuff, but doing it is a nightmare.
  6. LordIsurus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 1999
    star 3
    'I don't even feel it's made any difference to my career. I'm just a character in Star Wars.'

    Ewan McGregor


    Here's something I have alluded to ni a previous post. Star Wars is totally above and beyond any movie. Even though Ewan is a somewhat sought-after actor, he plays a character in Star Wars. It's humbling to him! It's as if, in that statement, he's coming to grips with the fact that him, along with anyone in a SW movie, whether they be Laurence Olivier or not, is just a character in SW. It will have no effect on a wel established actors career. But for some of the unknowngs, it will bring them great exposure. I imagine Ben, I mean Ewan and probably Alec too, were miffed that George saw them and used them as the same as everyone else on set. They're JUST actors...it's their job to act how he wants them to. But as Ewan says...to the kids and oddly enough, to a lot of adults, he is Obi Wan Kenobi! One of the greatest Jedi ever to exist! <<slowly, I think he's starting to appreciate that...dang, wait till his child/ren watch the whole set of movies...I doubt he'll be doing anything close to whining about SW then!!!>> Funnily enough, when I see Trainspotting or anything else Ewan is in, I dont see Obi-Wan! Same with Alec, I suppose. hmm..but with Harrison, I see Han Solo a lot! Indiana Solo, anyone?

    Isurus
  7. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    I suppose it's just more fun for fans like me to read interviews with people like Ian McDiarmid. He was asked (in that recent Palpatine interview in the Insider) if it's more difficult to act on a bluescreen set than on the real life monster sets of films like Sleepy Hollow. He answered no, it's really no different. You never really film on anything but very tiny portions of that set anyway, and it's not like you're just wandering unto a set that looks like a real town and just do your thing. The camera is in your face, as are dozens of people and lots of machines. Ian remarked that it never feels real - it's bizarre, because you only have to pan the camera 2 inches and you'll see people standing there chewing gum and scratching their heads.

    Same goes for Ian McKellen who was asked how it was to act with the balrog in LotR. The creature will be CGI and thus wasn't there. McKellen said it wasn't any different from what an actor usually does on a film. When they do close-ups of you, what you're supposed to react to is rarely there anyway. So you act like it is. That's what actors do, according to McKellen. And it's just the same with CGI creatures.

    I don't know. I just find this perspective so refreshing in the face of the moaning that "oooh, it's so hard when nothing's there". I mean, I'm sure it is - but is it REALLY that different from any movie? When you hear the stuff Ewan (and not only him, granted) says, you sometimes get the feeling that on anything but SW everything is just so "real" and the crew and machines and all the stuff and people that make the movie happen just sort of disappears.

    I've been to movie sets that were nothing like SW and one thing is always the same - it's never very real. It's always very, well, like McDiarmid said - bizarre.
  8. LordIsurus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 1999
    star 3
    I see what you mean. I thought what Ewan was spouting was a common feeling with most actors. But seeing how that's not the case...maybe Ewan just cant act as well on those sets as those older, more versed, gents can. Interesting to see the older actors not minding such things after seeing Ewan and possibly other younger actors saying how hard it is. You'd think the younger generation would be more accepting of this stuff, being closer to the digital realm, than older, theater actors. Oh well. I wonder how well Ewan would have played Luke...he has the whining down to a T! <<no offense, Mr Hamill..he couldn't come a patch on you! err, somehow that's supposed to be a compliment to Mark...>>


    Isurus
  9. Nrf-Hrdr Jedi Master

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    Aug 3, 2000
    star 4
    You're all very fond of baseless assumptions, aren't you?
  10. Grey1 Host: 181st Imperial Discussion Group

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    Come on, it's a difference if you fight one balrog, if you're in one senate, or if you are making one movie. Plus, he had never done that kind of work before TPM (Refreshing when people do not know what blue screen is...).

    Filming is hard, anyway, but this is harder. And he's not used to it, which does not prepare him at all.

    Maybe he would have been better in the OT, because there, he could have gone through location shooting and more real sets and everything.


    I admit, I didn't think of the difficulties of filming in general although I heard them, too, but SW is a bit harder.

    Plus, look at what Ewan's doing to Independence Day...
  11. naw ibo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 1999
    star 5
    Yeah, they are. The sets on SW are very different from most films, they are less existent. In fact alot of the actors have complained and that includes actors in the OT, when they had more sets and more locations shooting. And alot of actors on other blue screen heavy films have complained as well. According to Ewan he spends alot of time on his own in this film. So that probably mean's he's often acting against no one, often only against a blue screen or a very bare set which will have a lot added to it later. If he wants to complain about it, why shouldn't he?

    In fact that isn't the way it normally is on stage, they do have sets usually, even if it's just painted on a cloth and they normally have other actors to act against. And even if they don't there is normally an extensive rehearsal process which allows the actors to really get into the minds of their characters and into the whole mood of the play. Something that doesn't happen when filming Star Wars. And if it is a one man show type thing, then that character generally is putting across alot of complex things with dialogue, which also doesn't normally happen in Star Wars.
  12. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    Nrf-Hrdr;

    You really like to look smart, don't you? What baseless assumptions?
  13. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    I must admit though, that after seeing Moulin Rogue I can understand why Ewan felt it was difficult to jump straight into Jedi robes, bluescreen and digital characters. What I don't understand is why he uses phrases like "I resent Star Wars for that", etc.
  14. ash77 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2001
    Yo, check out the comments by Ewan on TFN's episode II page about star wars from down under. It will make those who dislike his flippant remarks even more disappointed in him...

    he truly has filled in the shoes of the late alec guinness.....


    -ash
  15. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    Yeah, I saw it. I think even the ones who defend him the most will have to admit that right now it almost seems like he's taking every opportunity to throw some dirt at SW. It's not just a little bit here and there, but nearly every time he makes a comment. It's almost like he's decided "oh, I gotta talk crap about SW this year, 'cause I'll have to gush it next year. Better try to keep my street cred".
  16. pes Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2001
    That interview is actually an old one that is being re-reported (likely because of Ewan's popularity in Australia due to the huge success there of Moulin Rouge). Magazines will often purchase an interview and reprint it months later as if it were new, it's a very common practice. They will also sometimes make it seem as if they had personally talked to the interviewee. You should always read these things with some healthy skepticism. SO...this is not an example of Ewan taking every opportunity to slag off Star Wars but rather an example of the press bringing up his comments over and over again.

    It should also be noted that TFn had the same article up in the news months ago.

    Pes
  17. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    Glad to hear that! :)

    I can't wait till next year, when we get to see and hear Ewan talking excitedly about lightsabers and R2-D2 again. Now, that is a thrill!
  18. LordIsurus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 1999
    star 3
    I had seen that article before, as well. In fact in one of my posts, maybe to another thread, I made mention of what he said and how his words can be viewed to reflect SW but it's very possible that he isnt meaning Star Wars, but moreso Hollywood movies in general.

    Isurus
  19. naw ibo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 1999
    star 5
    Exactly, in that article, which was probably over a thousand words long, there were exactly nine direct quotes from Ewan--almost none of which had the context in which he originally made them.

    If you want to know how disreputable the original article(put up on August 18th here at TF.n) was, the writer compared Ewan's demeanor to someone who'd just been sniffing coke--Ewan doesn't even drink anymore and there has never even been an allegation of his doing drugs(except from people who confuse Mark Renton with Ewan McGregor).
  20. Grey1 Host: 181st Imperial Discussion Group

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    Nov 21, 2000
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    What? You saying Ewan McGregor isn't really Mark Renton?

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

    You spoiled my childhood!

    :p
  21. dolphin Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 1999
    star 4
    I think Ewan is outspoken. Many actors aren't totally happy with filming their movies. It can be very tiring.
  22. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    Check out the miscalleaneous (?) news on the front page ... he's at it again ... jeez.
  23. augusto Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 6, 2001
    star 4
    Ewan is an idiot, just ignore his rantings and superiority complex and hope that his performance is good.
  24. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    I don't think he's an idiot. I just can't get my head around just why he's continuing to sound like he's pissed at George and the movies... Like someone said in that news post - it sounds like something has gone awfully wrong along the way.

    But if he keeps going like this next year it won't be long till McCallum is on his back, I think. This is just piss poor promotion for any movie...

    EDIT; And come to think of it - if he's as disappointed with it as he sounds, his performance will HAVE to suffer somewhere along a 3 movie road. Oh my, I miss Liam Neeson...
  25. naw ibo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 1999
    star 5
    Here is what was said in the original El Pais interview, which was conducted a month ago and a half ago and published 3 weeks ago:

    How does being Obi-wan Kenobi influence you in choosing the rest of your films?

    Ewan: In nothing. The only thing I know is that in some moment in 2003 I´ll have to film Episode III. Or whatever it´s going to be called. In fact, I´m not very involved in the saga. I only know the titles of the movies indirectly
    (learning the title from a reporter with a camera stuck in his face still obviously bugging him--naw). I act in front of some blue panels, do a couple of silly things and..there you are.....then they will call me for the promotion.

    The gist of it is the same but isn't quite as harsh. The original question was about whether or not being Obi-Wan Kenobi influenced how he chose other parts, which he quite rightly said it didn't influence him. Nor should it.


    This was the question asked after it:

    You have always been sure that you were going to be successful, did you think that when you saw your uncle, Dennis Lawson, as a pilot in Star Wars as well?

    Ewan: I wanted to be an actor since I was 9 years old and I´m sure that Star Wars had something to do with that. But it was more related to the emotions that I felt when I watched old movies and when I fell in love with those actresses
    (like he did with Carrie Fisher ), this thing happened to me all the time. My uncle played a role different to the ones I liked to play. [Acting] was unique and exciting...ummmm, I also wanted to play unique and exciting roles. I´ve never thought of having another profession. I love my job and I don´t take care if the movie is a superproduction or a short film....
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