Experimental Music Love

April 10, 2009

In the Loop – The Malcolm Tucker interview

Filed under: film,Interviews — by Free Edinburgh Podcast @ 4:51 pm
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Malcolm. Lovely.

I am very nearly needing emergency packs of underwear to contain my excitement for Armando Iannucci’s In the Loop, a film which brings together everything I have ever loved in life (comedy, Iannucci, America and Vada from My Girl).  Luckily, I seem to have been the only journalist who’s been able to track down its star, Malcolm Tucker, to get his views on the film.  And boy did he have a lot to share.  So, in an exclusive for EML, here are Malcolm Tucker’s thoughts on his latest film release, In the Loop.

It was in the most boring of back-room offices in Westminster that I encountered Malcolm Tucker, subject Armando Iannucci’s new The Thick of It spin-off, political comedy (polemedy?) In the Loop, a film Iannucci describes as “about what happens when the US president and the British PM are very keen on a course of military action in the Middle East that no one else thinks is a good idea.” What’s that Skippy? You think satire’s on the cards? F**k off – you’re a kangaroo. You can’t even understand the concept.

Luckily, Scottish spin-doctor Tucker was in one if his more sedate moods, having just unleashed his frustration on a vending machine that took his pound coin and refused to serve his Twix. There were Wotsits all over the floor.

I dared to ask him his thoughts on the film.

“As soon as I heard some jumped-up, bald, little Italian prick wanted to make a movie entrenched in the sheer ridiculousness of the politics behind going to war, I knew it was my balls that had to be sweating every day on that film-set to get it right.

“No other f****r would have had the gumption, the skill or the vocabulary to keep that Almando b*****d in check, and make sure this film didn’t just stir the s**t, but shove it in a blender and turn it onto full for fifteen minutes until even the sweetcorn became putrid liquid that needed to be scraped from the side of the cup with steel f*****g wool.”

And that could be argued is what this film is trying to do, though maybe in not quite so vivid terms as Tucker offers. Rather than stir any human effluence, this a film that questions the logic of war and the professionalism behind the scenes of government. It’s certainly a far cry from the slick, artificial polish of The West Wing where politicians demand to be revered, not realised for the frail, confused useless humans most are.

British Secretary of State for International Development, Simon Foster, accidentally blurts out on live television that military action may perhaps be necessary in the Middle East, a view he normally wouldn’t side with. And so, a frantic flight to Washington D.C. becomes the course of action, as Foster attempts to fan down the flames he’s created, encountering a pacifist U.S. army general, played by The Soprano’s James Gandolfini, as well as Vada Sultenfuss from My Girl, along the way.

“I had to teach that fat headed pasta muncher, Gandolfini, everything,” exclaimed Tucker. “He thought he knew it all just because he was in some piece of s**t show that only rich f***s with HBO could watch, but playing a member of the Italian Mafia is no preparation for the world of British politics.

“And as for that b***h who once copped off with Macaulay Culkin behind a tree? I made her cry more than some bee-stinged brat in an open casket ever could.”

Creating a film version of one of the most celebrated sit-coms of recent times must have had some pressure for Tucker though, especially considering big-screen recreations of the likes of Are You Being Served, League of Gentlemen and Mr. Bean hardly had the critics smiling.

“Pressure? Juggling the b**s of a leader loathed by his country and his colleagues – that’s pressure. Our vision for this project was always going to be achieved. The Thick of It is simple brilliance, and this is even more so. If you don’t get it watched, you are just letting the world know what a moron you really are.”

Effective words from Tucker there. And possibly true. Combining politics and comedy is never easy, but Iannucci has a proven track record. Not only is The Thick of It on his roster, but those wonderful satires of British media, The Day Today, On the Hour and Time Trumpet have helped Iannucci make his name making fun of those who take themselves too seriously. Such pedigree bodes well, and In the Loop looks like being the greatest British film since, well, the last really good one. And not a lesbian vampire in sight. Listen to Tucker.


1 Comment »

  1. […] be for you. On that note the star of ‘The Thick Of It‘ and indeed this movie is Malcolm Tucker, the terrifying spin doctor impresario whose diatribes of expletive infected rage form many of […]

    Pingback by In The Loop « Minty’s Menagerie — April 18, 2009 @ 12:45 am |Reply

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