Monday, August 3, 2009

Followup: More on Eagle of Ninth Filming Achiltibuie, Scotland

Minor update this morning regarding filming for The Eagle of the Ninth, starring Jamie Bell. As a follow to the piece the other day regarding casting call for a Gaelic speaking young actor, the Times has a new interview with director Kevin MacDonald who gives his thoughts on the Celtic influences he sees with the film, as well as more on the locale for filming, which we know is Achiltibuie, Scotland. The Times notes the village (more info here):
He has chosen the village of Achiltibuie, on the western mainland opposite the Summer Isles, as his location, and he hopes that the locals will be a ready source of extras.

“They were a more indigenous folk than the Celts, who were from further south,” he argues. “They were probably small and dark, like the Inouit, living off seals and dressed in sealskins. We are going to create a culture about which no one knows much, but which we will make as convincing as possible. We are basing it on clues gained from places like Skara Brae and the Tomb of the Eagles in Orkney, so that we will have them worshipping pagan symbols, like the seal and the eagle.

...He is also exploring early Celtic dance and music, including the eerie sound of the carnyx, which he described as ”a Scottish didgeridoo” and was memorably recreated and played, to the consternation of the Queen, at the opening of the Museum of Scotland in 1998. The tribes that the Romans met were Celtic, as described by the historian Tacitus in his biography of the Emperor Agricola,” Macdonald says. “They may have been Picts, of course, but most of the tribes were also Celtic.”Since the history of the Picts has been described by the historian Michael Lynch as “a mystery story with few clues and no satisfactory ending”, Macdonald has a fairly free rein in recreating his ancient tribe; but he is determined to be as authentic as possible, with the tribesmen in the movie all speaking Gaelic. In order to achieve a little contemporary symbolism, the Romans will be played by American actors."

Also as reported previously, filming for this movie which marks a return of Jamie Bell (Hallam Foe) back to Scotland will commence later this fall in October -basing out of Film City Glasgow, on the heels of David Mackenzie's The Last Word which will commence photography next month. BE SURE TO FOLLOW Achiltibuie Twitter where we all learned that crews were in the area seeking to rent cottages for Oct/Nov.

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