Which Historical Figures Should Rupert Play in Biopics?

Apart from a small role as punk rocker Cheetah Chrome in CBGB and war hero Ron Weasley in an obscure British indie series of films, one genre that is crying out for the Rupert Grint touch is the biography, or biopic.

And I think we can all agree, one underrepresented group in biopics are red headed people. So what would happen if we put these two facts together?

1. Winston Churchill

Starting with a major historical biopic, how about a young Winston Churchill? Churchill did, in fact, have red hair; at Harrow, his nickname was 'Copperknob'. Before going into politics he had enough adventures for several films: straight out of school he trained at the Royal Military College and was commissioned in the cavalry.

He served in India and the Sudan and wrote as a war correspondent in Cuba and South Africa. We'd see Rupert in an officer's uniform, leading cavalry charges, and hear him perfect Churchill's lisping speech impediment.

2. Achilles

With Norse gods inexplicably popping up in American comic books, how about a biopic of a Greek demigod? It's not that long since Troy, but their sun rose in the west and the siege of Troy lasted two weeks; we're more than ready for something slightly more accurate. We'd see Rupert in chariots and Greek armour and mourning his beloved Patroclus.

3. Erik the Red

There hasn't been a good historical film about axes and mead halls and Viking longships since Kirk Douglas was young. Erik the Red left 10th century Iceland to colonise Greenland, his son reached and explored parts of modern North America – and we need to see some accurate Viking helmets, without horns. We'd see Rupert bearded and windswept in the prow of a Viking longship.


4. Greg Rutherford

Films about sportsmen are rare, but with one Dan Radcliffe allegedly in athletics training to play Olympic gold medallist Sebastian Coe, next year, there is time for Rupert to beat him to the finishing line with a sporting biopic. How about continuing the British Olympic Gold theme with Greg Rutherford's performance in London 2012? We'd see Rupert leaping in lycra.

5. Esau

Something that counts as a biopic is a Biblical epic – once very popular and recently revived by his old friend Emma Watson. If she can feature in Noah, he could star in a film about Esau and his brother Jacob. Jacob is famous for having problems with his sons, but his first family feud was with his twin brother, his elder twin brother, Esau . We'd see Rupert in Biblical robes, with, um, goats?

6. John Paul Getty III

Maybe something a little more modern? Maybe the tragic story of John Paul Getty III? Not his kidnapping, but how about his struggle to overcoming his disabilities after a stroke left him nearly blind and quadriplegic? We'd test Rupert's physical acting, but also his voice work, as he'd need a slurred American accent, undergoing speech therapy.

7. Neil Kinnock

Talking of accents, how about something a little closer to home; how about the political rise of Neil Kinnock? Rupert is the right age to play him as he first enters parliament, a young Labour MP under a Tory government. We'd finally hear Rupert's Welsh accent and I'd be tempted to cast Kimberley Nixon as his Glenys.

8. Stan Laurel

Even better than Rupert's voice work is his natural comic timing, and if we're making a biopic of a famous comedian, we could do no better than Stan Laurel. Although Rupert isn't quite old enough, yet, to portray him at the peak of his partnership with Oliver Hardy, so we can make this one last. We'd see Rupert's amazing physical comedy in the world's greatest comic double act, and could try for Jonah Hill as his Ollie. 

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Submitted by Lauren on Tue, 09/09/2014 - 07:58
How to Hold a Conversation With Rupert Grint

I am pretty sure that there are people who have had spontaneous conversations with Rupert without problems.

People that he meets at work can't possibly practice in their mirror every morning – and then I'll say, and then he'll say and then I'll say but what if he says – and his work colleagues have never had anything but the highest praise for him, and that includes reporting interesting conversations they have had.

People who bump into him in general, in public, can have a small exchange of words – I loved you in something – cool – without spontaneously combusting.

But what if you know you're going to have a conversation with Rupert? What should you aim to do? How should you prepare? Whether it's an interview for a international magazine or a prize winner's meet and greet at a film event, you honestly can sustain a two-way conversation with him.

I was lucky enough to have fifteen whole minutes with him in a hotel on a Deathly Hallows press day and I had prepared my questions carefully – nothing earth shattering, but nothing that he'd been asked a squillion times before and could run out the standard answer to without thinking.

The journalist who went in three places before me had her carefully prepared questions that apparently required yes/no answers, because she came out complaining that she'd squeezed in thirty-five questions and received thirty-five yes/no answers.

I was worried, but I needn't have been. If he answers with a yes/no, try prompting with really? or surely not? and see if you can make him explain himself, you could turn that yes/ no into a brand new anecdote.

• Put a twist on a standard question. Everyone was asking him about kissing Emma, so I asked how odd it was for him and Dan to both have to kiss her, having grown up with her, hoping they'd had a bonding session over the weirdness of their experience and he said it was weird to think of her that way... It would’ve been just as weird as if you had to kiss Dan, I prompted... Exactly! he laughed But I’d probably be more comfortable kissing Dan.

He laughed. We laughed. The magazine's editor used it as a headline!

• Ask for his opinion on things his colleagues have already said about the film. He was having a long and repetitive day and he didn't really want to know what I thought about the film, but he was interested in hearing about what Tom or the Phelpses had said about a scene and he elaborated on it, laughing as told me about the complex he was developing about Dan closely observing and mimicking his allegedly Elvisy hip movements.

• Or tell him things his colleagues have said about him! I wanted to ask about how laid back he seemed, but that's just begging to be dismissed with a so, you're really laid back? Yeah. So I said Dan has said that you are impossible to fall out with because you are ridiculously laid back. He could set fire to you, and you wouldn’t object. Which was an awesome enough quote from Mr Radcliffe, but Rupert laughed and said, that has happened. I did catch fire, once. His t-shirt had brushed against a candle at a buffet and he'd caught fire and I didn’t really react, to be honest, which is quite weird. And he'd apparently never mentioned this, before, because his PR person was also in the room and she turned and boggled at the news as loudly as I did!

So, I would strongly advise you to make him laugh. Because chances are if he's laughing, he's interested, he is engaging with you and he isn't reciting a standard answer.

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Submitted by Lauren on Fri, 07/11/2014 - 10:46
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