A rather grey day, with intermittent rain. At the gates of Doune Castle Philip Jenkinson is standing with the Film Night crew.
I haven’t been chatting with him for long before we have been imper- ceptibly shuffled into an interviewing position beside a car, and I find myself being filmed at about 11.00 in the morning, the dullness of my replies matching the dullness of the day! After that they move over to a well in the courtyard and interview Graham, who at least managed to get some silly lines in – he deliberately mishears Phil Jenkinson’s rather facetious remark about an ‘insanity’ clause being built into the contract – ‘There is an insanitary clause, yes.’ Funnily enough, Phil Jenkinson is besotted by Eric Idle’s take-offs of him and constantly refers to them.
John is doing the Taunter on some artificial battlements at the back of the castle. He’s getting very irritated by TG’s direction of his acting. TG tends to communicate by instinct, gesture and feeling, whereas John prefers precise verbal instructions. So TJ has to take over and soothe John down.
Then the shot where live ducks and chickens, as well as dead rabbits, badgers, etc, are flying over the battlements. Small boys are recruited to help catch the chickens as they’re flung over. ‘Those spotted roosters are fast,’ warns Tommy.
A rather jolly day, with much corpsing from John, Eric and myself when Brian McNulty, third assistant director, in rich Glaswegian, reads in John’s Taunter’s lines for us to react to. How can you react without laughing to a broad Glaswegian saying ‘Of course I’m French, why do you think I’m using this outrageous accent?’