the future and his name is JAY RODAN.
n stage in Berlin after the world premier of
Monsieur N. Antoines de Caunes is cracking
a joke that he has left his wife so he can go live with the svelte. gorgeous Jay Rodan. the British actor who lights up the screen with his studied presence as young lieutenant Basil Heathcoate in De Caunes‘ Napoleonic conspiracy mystery.
Rodan‘s chiselled features. statuesque body and pensive gaze had already captured the attention of Franco Zeffirelli. who cast him in C ullas Hircver. and Bernardo Bertolucci. who produced his wife Claire Peploe’s Triumph oflxn'e (out here in the autumn) — in which Mira Sorvino falls in love at first sight with a hunky young fop and fantasises about giving this Rodan a kiss.
It is all a far cry from Rodan‘s eclectic youth. Born in South Africa to parents he describes as hippies. Rodan. (whose father is Scottish). moved to Canada before finally settling down in London. ‘I arrived here with absolutely no money. I don't mean that in a general sense. I mean I actually had no money at all. It was obviously a big place and I was very small so I rattled around for some time doing odd jobs. sleeping on floors. bumming around and doing the odd play. I got rejected by every agent in town. I didn‘t get anywhere with casting agents. forget about it baby. I would get standard form letters sent to me with nothing written on them.‘
Discussing the effect his unconventional. dislocated upbringing had on his later life. Rodan says: ‘When I was trying to break through a lot of people were looking at me in a strange way — you‘re from all these different countries yet you’re British. It was a hindrance but once I worked in a few movies it proved a benefit because it means I have a certain
24 THE LIST 10—24 Jun 2004
'I GOT REJECT ED BY EVERY AGENT IN TOWN, I DIDN'T GET ANYWHERE AND CASTING AGENTS - FORGET ABOUT IT BABY'
Move over Orlando Bloom. Kaleem Aftab has met the big screen heartthrob of
amount of versatility which I might not have had if I‘d come from one particular place and one particular tradition.‘
It was an ICM agent in New York who recognised Rodan‘s talent and global appeal — a talent and versatility that De Caunes wanted to make use of. ‘I met Antoine and everything was in English.‘ he recalls. ‘The script was in English and the audition. I thought that it was quite strange that this French director was doing a film about Napoleon in English with English actors. It was only after I met him the second time. after 1 got the part. that I received the entire French script and realised that I better brush up on my French.‘
Rodan. like his character in Monsieur N. is the perfect gentleman and plays down his good looks. ‘In Monsieur N my love is unrequited and in Triumph of Love. Bernando Bertolucci told me that I had to get into shape and look like somebody who she could conceivably fall in love with at first sight. which probably would not happen in real life. But it was a job and I wore a very long wig and a frilly shirt and that seemed to do the trick.’ At the Venice Film Festival premier of Triumph ofLove. Sorvino refused to have her pictures taken with Rodan because she was sure the press would try to link her romantically with her dashing lead.
Rodan‘s monopoly on demanding and diverse roles have established him as an auteur rather than teen girl favourite. but like Johnny Depp. Rodan is that rare breed. a kook and a heartthrob who really knows how to act. Time to take those posters down ladies.
Monsieur N opens on Fri 1 1 Jun at the GFI', Glasgow and the Filmhouse, Edinburgh.
Lights, camera, act/on . . . SWEET MOTHER OF CINEMA! Is it that time already? This year’s Edinburgh International Film Festival is two months away and so the frenzy begins. The title of the opening film has already been ever so carefully leaked to the press. It is, of course, Walter Salles’ The Motorcycle Diaries (pictured) featuring the gorgeous Mr Gael Garcia Bernal (Rough Cuts did point out that this was going to be Mr Bernal’s year, what with Bad Education and all that, way back in December). It’s good to have a South American film up there at the beginning of the festival. It has broken the two year run of Scottish openers (Morvem Caller, Young Adam), which is at least interesting. The Cannes-applauded Scottish social drama Dear Frankie has unsurprisingly also been confirmed. Rough Cuts would also like to put money down on a few major contenders that should definitely be in the programme: Richard Eyre’s Carolean thespian drama, Stage Beauty, Eleanor Yule’s Highlands thriller Blinded and best of all, Stephen Hopkin’s remarkable The Life and Death of Peter Sellers. Remember you heard it here first.
DON'T MISS THIS EXCELLENT film workshop at North Edinburgh Arts Centre. 15a Pennywell Court. It's called the Vision Thing: From Fiction to Film and is on Saturday 12th June 1 1am— 2pm, costing 25 (23.50). If you are interested in filmmaking. but not too sure how to put your ideas into action, then this workshop will help you ﬁnd out more about the business. The three hour session includes screenings of recent films made by Edinburgh and Glasgow-based filmmakers and short talks from local directors. producers and writers about their work. This film event is organised by Product magazine in association with Edinburgh Mediabase. For more details. telephone 0131 315 2151 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Motorcycle Diaries