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Saturday 23 August 2014

Stephens: British films repetitive

Published 20/03/2014 | 14:07

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Toby Stephens stars in The Machine

Toby Stephens has called on British filmmakers to stop trying to ape their US counterparts.

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The former Bond villain and son of Dame Maggie Smith said British film had become fixated on football hooligans, gangsters and "married couples in Hampstead".

Toby, who stars in new sci-fi thriller The Machine, told BBC News online: " Generally, when I get sent British scripts - and this isn't a generalisation - nine times out of 10 my heart sinks after about three pages."

The actor added: "We need to stop trying to imitate America. We need to stop trying to do the same movies over and over: the gangsters and football violence.

"We do these intelligentsia movies about married couples in Hampstead or whatever. I think there's a place for all those things but we can't keep on repeating ourselves. The Machine," he said of his own film, "is a really good example of people thinking outside of the box."

"We need to start writing cleverer and better scripts. I read a lot of scripts and I find there's a paucity on quality.

"Whenever I've been sent American scripts they tend to be much better. I don't know why that is because we've got a lot of good writers here.

"When we make good movies we make really good movies. We've got fantastic writers, actors and crew here. We need to start being a bit more brave about the kind of films that we make."

The Machine, directed by Caradog James, won the Raindance award at the British Independent Film Awards in December. It is released in cinemas and on VoD on March 21 and on DVD/Blu-ray on March 31.

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