There's a lot of very active W&I fans on tumblr posting a lot of brilliant content, so I thought I might start posting/linking to some of the fun stuff I find over there.
petramarwood has uploaded some recordings of Paul McGann and Ralph Brown talking about Withnail and I, possibly from this year's Slapstick Festival, and while I can't reproduce the audio here I will post transcripts (and you should totally go listen to the originals).
First, Paul McGann talking about the casting process (transcript by petramarwood, w/tiny corrections):
Ralph Brown: “How were you cast, Paul?”
Paul McGann: "How was I cast? I was cast, I think, because I’d been in a telly, a big telly the year before, "Monocled Mutineer", which we’d shot the same year as this, which was going on. And he’d presumably seen it, that I bore some resemblence to him at that point. And I walked in, I met him and I didn’t even sit down, he said: “Oh yeah, you’ve got the job.”
RB: “Wow! That’s the easiest audition in your life, man!”
PMcG: “Yeah. And then I spent the next hour just trying to pretend I wasn’t there, in case he realized he’d made a mistake.”
PMcG: "I suppose I had the sort of innocence or something that he had."
RB: “Yeah, that's... you're him. That’s perfect.”
^ I thought this was a very interesting little tidbit of information. Secondly, from the same occasion, Paul and Ralph talking about how Richard couldn't film the Penrith tea rooms scene without laughing (this one you should def listen to, it's hilarious):
PMcG: "He gets to the line about the jukebox - and he laughed. And of course, as you can see, it's all shot in one continuous take."
RB: "He's giggling here, look, you can see it, and so are you, you're both going."
PMcG: "Yeah but I'm really hard to corpse, he isn't, he's dead easy. Once he goes he goes, and that's it. And this is the very first take that we did, the very first, so this is completely fresh. He's really hanging on now."
RB: "Look at you. You're so enjoying that."
PMcG: "When we'd done the take, and we'd cut, Robinson said, 'Fantastic, fantastic, we've got it, it's great, but you know what Richard, we can probably get it better, if when you get to the line about the jukebox, you don't laugh. Don't laugh, it'll be even funnier.' ... We went to nearly, I think, 20 takes. He couldn't do it. I mean and he was upset, you know, 'I'm so sorry, Bruce, I did so unprofessionally'(?). So we used the first one."
Uncle Monty's Cottage
A 'Withnail and I' fan community
- paul mcgann on being cast as marwood and the penrith tea rooms scene