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The Friday Five: Neil Brand
This weekend sees a return to Scotland of one of the world’s leading silent film accompanists, Neil Brand, as he kicks-off the 2012 Hippodrome Festival of Silent Cinema in Bo'ness.
Brand has been performing live music to silent films for over 25 years and he'll be taking part in two events at this year's Festival, Opening Night film Show People (1928) and the Jeely Jar Special screening of Harold Lloyd's Safety Last! (1923).
What was the first film that had an effect on you?
Ben Hur (1956) It's the first movie I can remember seeing in its entirety at the age of 7 or 8 - my family were good churchgoers and saw the film as wholesome, unaware of the wall-to-wall violence, brutality and endless parade of human misery they were unleashing on their sensitive son. The view of the galley approaching at ramming speed through the oar-hole of the Roman galley has stayed with me for ever, as has the bright red face of Charlton Heston.
What's your local cinema?
What was the last DVD you bought/film you downloaded?
The silent Robin Hood (for work).
What's your favourite moment in a Scottish film?
The moment the two old guys start to groove to the music after discussing their forthcoming windfall from the oil company in Local Hero.
What's your favourite film?
God that's hard. Probably The Producers but it would be run a close second by most films with a train featured heavily in them.
Watch our interview with Neil recorded at the close of 2011's Hippodrome Festival of Silent Cinema.