This appeared in Scottish Field in February 2020

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Fab mag artwork by Alexander Jackson

BRIAN COX, award-winning Hollywood actor, has the values of his Dundee upbringing printed through him like a stick of rock — and not just because he once asked the city to bestow an honour upon the Dandy’s pigtailed provocateur, Beryl the Peril.

Like Dundee itself, Cox has faced tough breaks and hard knocks; “They call it the City of Discovery, but they should call it the City of Survival,” he once said. “It’s about a group of people who’ve been written off more times than I know, and they still go on.”

Cox’s reinvention began early when his father Charles, a factory weaver, was sent to register him as Colin. …

This originally appeared in the Sunday Times January 5 2019

Making 1917 with top Hollywood director Sam Mendes was a statement of intent by Scots screenwriter Krysty Wilson-Cairns

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Are Hollywood A-listers in love with Krysty Wilson-Cairns? Bond director Sam Mendes has worked with her three times. Spaced and Baby Driver film-maker Edgar Wright wrote his new horror picture with her, and Eddie Redmayne and Jessica Chastain are poised to sign up for her serial killer treatment The Good Nurse.

However, at first they didn’t know what to do with her. “People were always trying to get me to do children’s dramas, although if you’ve read or seen my work, then you’d find that unimaginable,” says the Glasgow scriptwriter, cheerfully. …

This appeared in Scottish Field January 2019

Of all the relationships in Billy Connolly’s life, the longest and most electrifying has been with Scotland, a country he has loved and lambasted as only one of the family is allowed to do. Scotland, and in particular Glasgow, was where his first children were born, where he learned to play the banjo, where he served his apprenticeship as a welder and where he first performed in public.

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Artwork by Andrew Jackson

It is Connolly who reminds Scotland of the collective misery of hiking up Loch Lomond, impersonating Glasgow drunks who walk like horses doing dressage, laughs at central belt entertainers who sing yearningly of Scotland as if they weren’t standing in the middle of it, and observes Aberdeen’s bitter microclimate, where everyone gets the same Mohican hairstyle plastered to one side of your skull by the wind. …


Siobhan Synnot

Film, arts & currents affairs wumman in Scotland. All views are my own, and probably influenced by how early it is.

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