A/V Room









X-Men 2 - Alan Cumming Q&A

Compiled by: Jack Foley

Q. The film roles are coming now, you've got a novel out, you broke into New York being on stage in cabaret, and you've done TV and review stuff over here, is it now kind of settling down much more as the movie career takes off?
I'm still doing a lot more different things. I'm doing a lot more writing for film now. But I have a theatre company in New York as well now. I've always been kind of eclectic, and the more known you get, especially in America, they want to know what you're little box is.
But I kind of just get bored and so I like to do lots of different things.

Q. The film has the feel of a middle part of a trilogy, are you all committed to a third film? And what, if so, you are looking forward to?
When I saw the film, I was actually really excited by it. I think the way that characters were developed from the first film to the second one, and I really liked my character. He's a pretty sort of complex person for a comic book superhero.
So, I'm kind of intrigued to see what they will do with him. I'm also hoping that he will have some sort of terrible accident, and his face turns pale!

Q. The X-Men is always topical because of the theme it embraces. But particularly with the climate over the past couple of years, is it more relevant than ever, this film, because it's about tolerance?
Oh yeah, I totally think so. But in a way, the message has been the same for decades, although, I suppose, in this film I think it's about trying to understand other people's cultures and not just thinking they are wrong because they're different. A lot of our leaders could do with thinking about that, I guess.

Q. What did you first think when you looked in the mirror and saw yourself as this character? And was there a temptation to ham it up, because I think you pitched it perfectly?
Well, it kind of changed quite a lot before we started shooting, but the first time I saw it, I was horrified, because it had taken eight hours and I thought I was going to have to fly back from New York with the make-up on, because it took so long and they weren't going to do it again.
It took me a long time to get used to it, because I felt 'why did they want me to be in this film', because it could be anyone underneath this thing.
But then, as it got more refined and I began to get used to it, I worried about trying to act through all this make-up, but Cher's done it for years! But then you just sort of trust it. What really helped me was the movement.
I worked with this guy called Terry Nottery, who had been an acrobat with Cirque Du Soleil, so I had a sort of a movement that was quite big in terms of the way he made gestures, so once I felt confident in that, I felt ok about it.
The great thing about him, though, is that when you see him at the start and he's really violent, and then as the film goes on, you see he's a kind of sensitive and shy little mutant, so it was nice to have that contrast in the character. And eventually, you have to trust that it's all coming through.




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