West is West Interview Special with Emil Marwa

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“It’s all a bit Surreal”

EMIL Marwa has had quite a journey with the autobiographical story that is ‘East is East’. When writer Ayub Khan Din adapted his story for the stage in 1997 Emil was part of the cast, two years later he was part of Leslee Udwin’s big screen adaptation ‘East is East’, and now in 2011 he’s back for the sequel ‘West is West’…

 

Emil on PLAYING MANEER AGAIN 10 YEARS ON

“It’s a bit surreal really: we shot ‘East is East’ 11 years ago and I have been involved in this project for 14 years. The first job I got when I left drama school was the stage play. Revisiting the character 10 years later, in my life, but actually only 5 years later in the character’s life, has been incredibly interesting, especially because in ‘East is East’ my character was naïve and young and innocent, and in this film he has become more worldly wise.”

 

Emil on HIS FELLOW ACTORS

“Om is simply fantastic. He brings humanity and sincerity to a character who could have been very one-dimensional. The things he does are terrible. But still, you are drawn to him and you sympathise with his situation and feel sorry for him. It’s quite a special gift that he’s got. Linda’s [Linda Bassett] so down to earth and she cares so much about her work. I just learn from her every time we work together.”

 

Emil on COMPARING EAST IS EAST WITH WEST IS WEST

When I first read the script of ‘West is West’, I liked the fact that it felt like a stand alone film. It is a sequel, but you can watch ‘West is West’ on its own. ‘East is East’ is a great film. I love it. What people remember about it is that it is very funny. But people easily forget that it is also very serious. ‘West is West’ still has the humour, the quirky jokes and the cross culture of ‘East is East’, but it also takes you to a deeper level of human relationships. It’s more of a coming of age film. Sajid is turning form a child to a teenager, Maneer from a teenager to a man, and George, at the later stage of his life, coming to a wisdom and understanding. He’s coming to terms with his life having run away from it and having done what he’s done, and facing up to it all. I think it will appeal in a different way from ‘East is East’, and I personally think it is better in some respects.

 

 

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