An Interview with Eoin Macken

How did you move from model to actor to writer/director/producer?  Do you prefer being in front or behind the lens?

I have no idea. I just did things, and over time other things seemed to happen, or projects intertwined. I have always just tried to make films, and my opinion has always been that to understand film and cinema I have to learn as much as possible about as many elements as possible. I created a lot of my own work early on – films that allowed me to explore my acting abilities. I want to be involved in telling stories and I love the art form and the possibilities of film. When I was younger I would write constantly and draw stories, so it’s an evolution of being a child I guess.

When do you find time to write screenplays and what inspires you? Does a degree in psychology aid in the development of your characters?

I write constantly. On set, on the train, sometimes out walking or having drinks with buddies in a bar I get ideas, or a conversation or comment sparks something and so I write it down. I’ve been known to leave a conversation for a few minutes to write down something that occurred in my head triggered by something somebody said or that I saw. I am always thinking about characters and situations and how people would react. I think I always had that interest, which is what drew me to psychology initially.

Any new independent projects in the pipeline?

I have a new book coming out later this year, Hunter and the Grape, which I think is quite beautiful, and I adapted a book that is being produced by Richard Bolger, called Here Are The Young Men, which is a very powerful, gritty Irish coming-of-age film in the veins of Trainspotting or This Is England. We are in development with the Irish Film Board on it and I’m hopeful that we get to make that later this year.

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The relevance of Resident Evil for our times, according to Eoin Macken

A childhood connection The Resident Evil films are very loosely based on the video game series of the same name – which Macken admits “scared the bejesus” out of him when he was younger. “My friend had a basement garage and we’d play it together. It was always dark. He loved horror and being scared, but I didn’t enjoy that. “It was first time I ever played a computer game that actually scared me. Up until that point I’d been playing things like Mario Kart.” Movies based on games have a poor cinematic reputation. But Macken believes the Resident Evil series is, in its own way, a worthy representation of the games on the big screen. “A video game adaptation doesn’t have to follow it exactly. You can create your own expression within the game. “But Paul [W.S. Anderson, director] understands the game because he knows them. “I think that’s what comes across within every Resident Evil movie, and especially this one. That’s the most important thing – to care about your source material.”

He regularly creates work for himself too. Macken wrote, produced and directed the independent feature Leopard, and recently wrote and directed short film The Green Rabbit and The Ice Cream Girl. But there’s another passion he’s aiming to tap into. “I actually wanted to be a marine biologist and make documentaries,” he says. “I’m getting there.” “I want to get involved in conservation stuff. I want to try and do a David Attenborough.”

Fortunately, there’s still time to do so. The global apocalypse isn’t here just yet.

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Eoin Macken on Zombies – and Far Realer Threats to Humanity

Resident Evil: The Last Chapter sees humanity on its last legs. Which seems rather close to the bone. How are you feeling after the shitstorm that was 2016?

Drained, confused and exhausted. I don’t really know how to express my feelings in an interview like this, but there is more of a need now than ever for humanity to take a look at itself and bond together to survive, a little like Resident Evil – there’s a deep moral message in this film, surrounded by the zombies and the chaos and the excitement, that is incredibly relevant right now.

What are you most proud of?

Being able to have gone to Mozambique and made a documentary for Sightsavers. Having the skillset as a filmmaker to make that documentary, and to have a little bit of a cachet as an actor to be asked, is humbling, and made me proud that I was able to do something worthwhile.

Full article.