Fr Thei'v Road to Hollywoo : "bit of a fairytale come true, perhaps? More so for who plays Prince Charming to Drew Barrymore's

Cinderella in Ever After.

Words: Miles Fielder

'HE'S COMPLETELY DIFFERENT FROM what everyone ever thought about him.‘ says Dougray Scott of his role as Prince Henry in liver After. an updated version of Cinderella. ‘He‘s running away from home. because he doesn't want to be in this arranged marriage. He's rebellious. a bit arrogant. but he gets caught and he's very miserable. Then he meets this girl who completely changes his life. She challenges his snobbish views and he falls in love with her soul.‘

L'nlike most of his Scottish compatriots. Dougray Scott isn't playing Prince Charming on the panto stage: this is big—time Hollywood. Cinema-goers may have caught a fleeting glance of the (ilenrothes—born actor in the meteor movie. Deep Impact (in which he made little impact. following an executive decision to cut almost all of his scenes). but liver After is his real US debut

It’s also a timely piece of casting for Scott. putting him on screen alongside Drew Barrymore. who‘s back on the rise after The ll’edding Singer. 'lt‘s sweet and it looks beautiful. the whole film. I loved watching it.‘ recalls Scott. ’l)rew is a sweetheart and a great actress.‘

In August. Scott returned home to promote another project. a short film called The Proposal. at the lidinburgh International Film Festival. In it he

18 THE “ST 8 22 Oct 1998

plays a scriptwriter struggling for control of his work with a producer

(played by Patsy Kensit).

“l'lte Proposal is just as important to me as any film. because it’s me committed to celluloid.‘ he states simply. ‘lt‘s about this deeply cynical. bitter and twisted guy who’s about to end his life and he's going to drag

someone down with him. It‘s kind of

full—on. intellectually. It‘s all about word-play. getting into someone’s head and fucking with their mind.‘ Although there might seem to be a world of difference between playing Prince (‘harming and a psychotic writer. Scott‘s preparation for the parts remains the same. ‘I always work on the same premise. whatever the budget or genre of a movie.‘ he explains. 'l‘m trying to get inside the head of a character. trying to live in

that world. be in the moment. Of

course. everything‘s different working on a £3().()()() budget as opposed to the $28 million movie liver After was. But you still try and get the truth from a character.

'1 instinctively think about the history of a character to get up to the point where the film starts. It's like a little game I play. I think the character comes from the writing. not from the actor. If there‘s a character on the page. it's the actor‘s job to jump into their shoes. see the world through their eyes. But. you can only do that if

'I was happy as a pig in shit to be working with Bill Forsyth. For me, it’s like what Americans must think it's like working with

Scorsese.’ Dougray Scott

it‘s been written in a successful manner.~

Ever After and l'llt’ l’l'n/HM‘U/ suggest Scott likes to pick and mix his acting gigs. as do two of his forthcoming films the sequels to .llissiun.‘ [III/H).\'.\'l/)/(’ and (iregm'_\".v' (iirl. Scott begins work on the mega- budget super-spy movie in November with Tom (‘ruise and director .lohn Woo. "I'm excited as fuck really.‘ be exclaims.

Meanwhile. of his work on Bill liorsyth’s relatively low-budget independent film. Scott recalls: 'Bill‘s one of my heroes. 1 was happy as a pig in shit to be working with him. to be perfectly honest. l‘or me. it's like what Americans must think it’s like working with Scorsese. \Vith Bill. you‘re really on your toes all the time. and it makes you a better actor because you haven‘t got tired ideas about the way you should play a scene.

‘lt‘s challenging not to feel comfortable with what you're doing.’ he suggests. ’l don‘t want to get up in the morning and know exactly what I'm doing. In the film I'm making after .lltsstnll.‘ [HI/mssf/r/e 2. I play a New York cop. which is a boy's dream. I feel very lucky to have that kitttl of opportunity}.

Ever After goes on general release on Fri 9 Oct. See review, page 30.