Rush producer Andrew Eaton: 'I would love to work with Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie again'

The film producer talks to Katherine Landergan about life behind the camera

You’ve worked on numerous films with director Michael Winterbottom. What’s that relationship like?

It’s been the best. I couldn't imagine doing what I’m doing without him. We’ve kind of grew up together, we were friends since our early 20s. You build a lot of trust, and make your mistakes together and you make your successes together. We’ve been really lucky.

The biggest life changing moment of our career was making the film “In This World” because it was just after 9/11 which involved going to Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran. We were trying to make a film that would say something about the state of the world at that time and I think we pulled that off.

You worked on Rush with director Ron Howard: what is he like as a director?

Ron grew up in Hollywood and is very much of that world. But it is unusual to meet someone from Hollywood who is so not cynical, enthusiastic, and energetic.

Are there any particular actors you’d like to work with in the future?

I saw two actors that I know in Los Angeles at the Globes: Michael Fassbender and Benedict Cumberbatch, and I think they’re both amazing and would be great to work with. Speed racer: Chris Hemsworth stars in Ron Howard’s ‘Rush’ Speed racer: Chris Hemsworth stars in Ron Howard’s ‘Rush’

I did a film, A Mighty Heart with Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt a few years ago. I would love to work with Angie again. Brad Pitt was actually a producer on that film with me and that would be great to work with him as an actor. He was really generous and it was very good to have someone like that on your team who is so well established and so well respected.

I had such good fun working with Angie. She is one of the actresses who is the most enjoyable. She takes the job seriously but at the same time is quite happy to have a bit of fun.

In one scene in Rush, Daniel Bruhl’s character races a car through the countryside – how are you when it comes to the speed limit?                                                                                                    

I’m a big motorbike fan. But I don’t tend to drive cars too fast, I’m pretty cautious, but maybe ten years ago it would have been a different story.

What was the first car you owned?

The first car that I owned was a yellow Mini Clubman and it was a very unsexy car but I put in these really expensive speakers so I could play music very loud. It was terrible. Yellow wasn’t my choice; it was the only one I could afford.

Rush is up for a lot of awards – are these prizes important to you as a producer? Or do they simply add to the film’s success? 

It’s more helpful in every regard obviously it helps promotes the film. It was obvious at the Golden Globes - when you have a film nominated everyone is much nicer to you and everyone is aware of your work.

Sometimes being in films can be quite a lonely experience, especially as a producer. Anyone who says otherwise is a liar: when you get a pat on the back it’s great - it helps the ego and your self-confidence. It’s also great for the next project you’re pitching because people know who you are even more so.   

Did you get to rub elbows with any celebrities at the Globes? 

I was sitting at the table next to U2 and they were chuffed to win the Globe, they were so pleased. People say I look a bit like the Edge, so I went up to him and he kind of agreed that we look quite alike - so we took a photo together.

Rush is a British-German production, and in a piece for The Guardian you wrote about such co-productions that “this used to be the last resort of a struggling project, but now it’s normal.” Why do you think films are becoming increasingly made between countries?

It’s mostly economically driven - it has a big economic benefit. And not to mention what the Lord of the Rings has done for New Zealand’s tourism. It focuses attention on your culture, and that’s massively beneficial.

Like any film about a real-life story, Rush was said to have slightly tweaked things: for example, over-dramatizing the feud between Hunt and Lauda. In your opinion, how closely should a film follow the story that it is based on?

It’s always subjective I think if you're making a film about a true story you've got license to play around with things that happened behind closed doors that nobody knows for sure because you’re speculating. But you can’t end up radically changing facts and adding characters. I think the rivalry on the track was genuine, I think privately maybe they were slightly better friends then we had made out. But we didn’t do anything like changing the outcome of races.

Andrew Eaton, born in Derry, Northern Ireland,  has been a film and television producer for more than 20 years. Rush is out now on DVD, Blu-ray, and digital.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Israeli-born actress Gal Gadot has been cast to play Wonder Woman
film
News
Top Gear presenter James May appears to be struggling with his new-found free time
people
Arts and Entertainment
Kendrick Lamar at the Made in America Festival in Los Angeles last summer
music
Arts and Entertainment
'Marley & Me' with Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson
film
Arts and Entertainment
Jon Hamm (right) and John Slattery in the final series of Mad Men
tv
Arts and Entertainment
theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Place Blanche, Paris, 1961, shot by Christer Strömholm
photographyHow the famous camera transformed photography for ever
Arts and Entertainment
The ‘Westmacott Athlete’
art
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tv Some of the characters appear to have clear real-life counterparts
News
Brooks is among a dozen show-business professionals ever to have achieved Egot status
people
Arts and Entertainment
A cut above: Sean Penn is outclassed by Mark Rylance in The Gunman
film review
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
James Franco and Zachary Quinto in I Am Michael

Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight

Arts and Entertainment
A scene from the movie 'Get Hard'
tvWill Ferrell’s new film Get Hard receives its first reviews
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: David Cameron (Mark Dexter), Nick Clegg (Bertie Carvel) and Gordon Brown (Ian Grieve)
tvReview: Ian Grieve gets another chance to play Gordon Brown... this is the kinder version
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in the first look picture from next year's Sherlock special

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Because it wouldn’t be Glastonbury without people kicking off about the headline acts, a petition has already been launched to stop Kanye West performing on the Saturday night

music
Arts and Entertainment
Molly Risker, Helen Monks, Caden-Ellis Wall, Rebekah Staton, Erin Freeman, Philip Jackson and Alexa Davies in ‘Raised by Wolves’

TV review
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
James May, Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond in the Top Gear Patagonia Special

TV
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    No postcode? No vote

    Floating voters

    How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

    By Reason of Insanity

    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
    Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

    Power dressing is back

    But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
    Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

    Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

    Caves were re-opened to the public
    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

    Vince Cable interview

    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
    Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

    Promises, promises

    But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
    The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

    The death of a Gaza fisherman

    He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
    Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
    Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

    The only direction Zayn could go

    We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
    Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

    Spells like teen spirit

    A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
    Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
    Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

    Licence to offend in the land of the free

    Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
    From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

    From farm to fork in Cornwall

    One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
    Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

    Robert Parker interview

    The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor