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.

Arts and Entertainment
Sir Nicholas Serota has been a feature in the Power 100 top ten since its 2002 launch
art
Arts and Entertainment
Awesome foursome: Sam Smith shows off his awards
music22-year-old confirms he is 2014’s breakout British music success
Arts and Entertainment
Contestants during this summer's Celebrity Big Brother grand finale
tvBroadcaster attempts to change its image following sale to American media group
Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Dales attempts to sell British Breeze in the luxury scent task
tvReview: 'Apprentice' candidate on the verge of tears as they were ejected from the boardroom
Arts and Entertainment
Kate Bush: 'I'm going to miss everyone so much'
music
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Laura Wood, winner of the Montegrappa Scholastic Prize for New Children’s Writing
books

Children's bookseller wins The Independent's new author search

Arts and Entertainment
Pulling the strings: Spira Mirabilis

music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Neville's Island at Duke of York's theatre
musicReview: The production has been cleverly cast with a quartet of comic performers best known for the work on television
Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol

art
Arts and Entertainment
Lynda Bellingham stars in her last Oxo advert with on-screen husband Michael Redfern

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Hunger Games actress Jena Malone has been rumoured to be playing a female Robin in Batman v Superman

film
Arts and Entertainment
Tim Minchin portrait
For a no-holds-barred performer who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, Tim Minchin is surprisingly gentle
Arts and Entertainment
Clara takes the lead in 'Flatline' while the Doctor remains in the Tardis
tvReview: The 'Impossible Girl' earns some companion stripes... but she’s still annoying in 'Dr Who, Flatline'
Arts and Entertainment
Joy Division photographed around Waterloo Road, Stockport, near Strawberry Studios. The band are Bernard Sumner (guitar and keyboards), Stephen Morris (drums and percussion), Ian Curtis (vocals and occasional guitar), Peter Hook (bass guitar and backing vocals).
books
Arts and Entertainment
Sean Harris in 'The Goob' film photocall, at the Venice International Film Festival 2014
filmThe Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Streisand is his true inspiration
Arts and Entertainment
X Factor contestant Fleur East
tvReview: Some lacklustre performances - but the usual frontrunners continue to excel
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Tuttle's installation in the Turbine Hall at the Tate Modern
artAs two major London galleries put textiles in the spotlight, the poor relation of the creative world is getting recognition it deserves
Arts and Entertainment
Hunger Games actress Jena Malone has been rumoured to be playing a female Robin in Batman v Superman
film
Arts and Entertainment
On top of the world: Actress Cate Blanchett and author Richard Flanagan
artsRichard Flanagan's Man Booker win has put paid to the myth that antipodean artists lack culture
Arts and Entertainment
The Everyman, revamped by Haworth Tompkins
architectureIt beats strong shortlist that included the Shard, the Library of Birmingham, and the London Aquatics Centre
Arts and Entertainment
Justice is served: Robert Downey Jr, Vincent D’Onofrio, Jeremy Strong and Robert Duvall in ‘The Judge’

Film

Arts and Entertainment
Clive Owen (centre) in 'The Knick'

TV

Arts and Entertainment
J.K. Simmons , left, and Miles Teller in a scene from

Film

Arts and Entertainment
Team Tenacity pitch their fetching solar powered, mobile phone charging, heated, flashy jacket
tvReview: No one was safe as Lord Sugar shook things up
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.

    Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

    Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

    Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
    Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

    Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

    The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
    New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

    New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

    Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
    Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

    Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

    The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
    The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

    Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

    The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
    11 best sonic skincare brushes

    11 best sonic skincare brushes

    Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
    How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

    A crime that reveals London's dark heart

    How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
    Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

    Lost in translation: Western monikers

    Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
    Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

    Handy hacks that make life easier

    New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
    KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

    KidZania: It's a small world

    The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
    Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

    'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

    The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
    From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

    Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

    From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
    Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

    Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

    A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
    The 10 best smartphone accessories

    Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

    Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
    Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

    Liverpool v Real Madrid

    Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?