EWEN Bremner is sitting in the parking lot of a truck stop in rural New Mexico when I call. “The wild west,” he says. “It’s the only place I can get a phone signal around here.”
A phone signal that stutters and drops out more than once over the next half hour. On those moments when Bremner’s soft Edinburgh accent drops away I find myself trying to jerry-rig a metaphor out of our communication difficulties. Something along the lines of Bremner having a career that has been blinking in and out of visibility ever since he made his name on some film back in the 1990s … What was it called again? Oh yes, that’s right Trainspotting [ . . . ]
Twenty years after Trainspotting made him a star – and the poster boy of 90s excess – could Ewan McGregor become Renton again?
The characters were people you felt you already knew. There was Begbie, played by Robert Carlyle, the booze-fuelled, unpredictable psycho, a small-town Scottish version of Joe Pesci in Goodfellas. Spud (Ewen Bremner): hapless, surreal, a lovable, smackhead loser. Sexy Sick Boy (Jonny Lee Miller), out for whatever he could get, mostly women and drugs. And Renton, played by Ewan McGregor, the heroined-up antihero, who kept kicking drugs and then going back, and doing the same to his mates, until he finally robbed them all (except Spud) and ran away. [ . . . ] Read Full Story: Ewan McGregor: ‘What if I’m not Scottish enough any more?’ | Film | The Guardian
Born in Edinburgh, Irvine Welsh was working for the council and studying for an MBA at Heriot-Watt University when he wrote Trainspotting. Published in 1993, the novel was a hit, and in 1996 was made into a film by Danny Boyle. A sequel is released next month, and an immersive theatre adaptation of the original book runs at The Vaults, London SE1, until 15 January. Welsh’s latest novel, The Blade Artist, was published this year. He is married for the second time and lives in Chicago.