Monday 23 January 2017

Oldman: Thatcher inspired character

Published 11/04/2011 | 11:02

Gary Oldman says some of the inspiration for his Red Riding Hood character came from Margaret Thatcher
Gary Oldman says some of the inspiration for his Red Riding Hood character came from Margaret Thatcher

Gary Oldman has revealed that he had an unlikely inspiration for his latest big screen character - former prime minister Baroness Thatcher.

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The Dark Knight star plays werewolf hunter Father Solomon in Catherine Hardwicke's Red Riding Hood - a retake on the classic fairytale.

And the actor said he saw his character as being very much akin to the former world leader, because he is a man as committed to his cause as the Iron Lady was to her Premiership.

"Many, many, many years ago I met her. She's an incredibly charismatic woman and someone whose mind is... made up, you know?" he explains.

Oldman prefers to think of Solomon "as a man possessed" rather than a villain.

"He has looked into the abyss and is now absolutely convinced of the righteousness of his mission," he said.

Though Oldman is typically associated with darker movies, he's also a fan of fantasy films, and Red Riding Hood marks more than a decade of films he's made in this genre.

His fantasy debut came as Harry's godfather Sirius Black in the third Harry Potter movie, and the character will appear in the final instalment this summer.

And then there are the Batman movies - he's due to reprise the role of Batman's crime-fighting ally, police lieutenant Jim Gordon, in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises due for release next year.

All of these films are superbly executed, he says. "Of all of the comic book movies that are being made, you could say that Chris Nolan's The Dark Knight and Batman Begins is the creme de la creme of it. And while not everybody's going to like Harry Potter films, they're well done. There's a pedigree to it."

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