I may be a Rocknrolla star but I still belong to Glasgow
Category: Interviews | Posted by: admin
Article Date: September 10, 2008 | Publication: Evening Times | Author: Barry McDonald
Publication/Article Link:Evening Times
HOLLYWOOD heart-throb Gerard Butler has admitted he owes his success to growing up in the west of Scotland.
The 39-year-old star of Guy Ritchie's new film Rocknrolla was brought up in Paisley and studied law at Glasgow University.
Gerard, who plays a clueless gangster called One Two, said: "There's a lot of Glasgow in me and there's a lot of Glasgow in One Two.
"In my time I've known a few gangsters but it's never been a big part of my life. But the experience of growing up in Glasgow, I think, endows anybody with a lot of personality for better or worse."
Like his character in the film, Gerard admits he's no stranger to dealing with unsavoury characters. He said: "I'm not going to exaggerate and say that is how I spent my life, but I grew up in quite a working class area so you can't avoid coming across that every now and again.
"Funnily enough, when I started studying law, in some ways I became even more involved, because then you start going out to the clubs in Glasgow where there is a real mixture of middle class and crazy people.
"I think there are a lot of similarities between the inner depths of Glasgow and cockney London.
"Definitely, there's a lot of the same characters, they just have different accents."
Despite his A-list status he still retains close links with the city and is known to enjoy a beer or two in Stravaigin in the West End. (GB.NET CLARIFICATION: Gerard still maintains an alcohol free lifestyle.)
And Butler joked that more Scottish men could benefit from following the sort of fitness regime that gave him a famously fit body for his role as King Leonidas in 300. He had to train for four months solid to get the look.
He laughed: "I think everywhere needs more men like me!"
Gerard made his film debut in Mrs Brown, alongside another superstar who owes his success to his Scottish background, Billy Connolly.
Since then he's gone on to star in major Hollywood blockbusters like 300, Dracula 2000 and opposite Angelina Jolie in Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life.
He is about to star in a remake of the classic gangster film The Untouchables, which is due out next year. (GB.NET CLARIFICATION: The Untouchables is still on hold. The Ugly Truth and Game are due out next year and Law Abiding Citizen starts filming next month.)
Read the full interview in this week's Big Issue - out tomorrow.