PortalHenryCavillBR spoke exclusively to Duncan Falconer, Henry Cavill’s friend, a very talented author and a former soldier of the Royal Marines.
Cavill invited him to join his team in the Commando Challenge, which took place on October, 8th.
In that interview, Duncan talks about how he started writing, why Henry Cavill left the production of Stratton,
what happened behind the scenes of the Commando Challenge and tells us, at first hand, about a future project he is involved in with Cavill.
With the release of Stratton in the movie theaters, what was your impression when you realized that your book would have a version for the big screen? Did you get involved in writing the script? What are your expectations about this movie?
DUNCAN FALCONER: I was very happy when I heard my Stratton series was to be made into a movie. We had a low budget while we looked for an actor. When Henry agreed to make the movie it immediately became a much higher budget. I wrote the script and Henry wanted to make my script. The problems began when the director decided to change the script with another writer. This eventually resulted in Henry leaving the project.
Recently, on October, 8th, you have participated with Henry Cavill in the Commando Challenge. What was the most difficult challenge in that competition? And what was the moment you liked the best? Were there any weird or funny incidents during the run?
I did something like the Commando challenge over 40 years ago when I was a young Royal Marine and so when Henry asked me to join him on the run I was not sure if I was fit enough to enjoy it. I’m 60 years old so I had to go for a 10K run where I live to see if I could do it. Henry only gave me 2 weeks warning. Of course, the Commando challenge is much more than 10K with 8 major obstacles to overcome during the run such as tunnels, ponds and muddy trails. So I found the entire run a challenge. The best moment was a meter from the finishing line! Henry is a very amusing man and throughout the run he was taking every opportunity to make jokes – the entire team are those kind of people so there was quite a bit of laughing going on, except when we had some very steep hills – then it went quiet while we pushed ourselves up them. But at the top of each hill was a funny comment from someone to carry us on to the next.
By your own assessment, how would you evaluate the results of the event?
It was a great success. I understand many more people turned up for the event this year, which must have been because of the publicity Henry created for it. And Henry has agreed to do it next year so I fully expect that to be even more of a success.
What would you like to say to your fans and to everybody who joined the Commando Challenge this year?
I’d like to tell them thank you very much for your support. Perhaps next year you guys should have a 10K run in Brazil somewhere, or in several places in Brazil, at the very same time and we can celebrate together.
You sir have already served as a Royal Marine. Has this somehow contributed to the excellent performance you presented in the competition?
Ha! You are very kind! I would not say excellent performance. You would not say that had you seen me crawling along the tunnels. Running is ok, but crawling along long stony tunnels on your hands and knees is not something you prepare for as you get older. But yes, you are right. There is a kind of mindset you develop in the Marines that stays with you for life – the mindset that it is only pain, and no one ever died from pain.
Henry Cavill, an actor and a friend of yours, is an ambassador for the Royal Marines. He has invited you to join the event. What was your first reaction when receiving your friend’s invitation? In your opinion, how important was his support to the challenge and in terms of his participation in the Royal Marines? How was our Superman’s performance in real life?
My first response was to laugh out loud and complain to him that he gave me 2 weeks warning only. I would have liked 3 months warning in order to prepare. I accused him of deliberately inviting me so that I would keep the team pace slow. Therefore I was determined to try and keep pace with the others. I did not quite manage it of course. His support for the challenge was immense. He must have doubled the number of people that turned up for the race. A lot of supporters were wearing Superman costumes. And Henry’s performance was fabulous. He was in full training mode for Superman, which means he does not do a lot of running – the training is very different. So he was not able to prepare himself either. Considering that, he did very well indeed.
We all know that you like to write. What motivated you to write? And what would you like to communicate to the readers through your work?
I began writing by accident on a trip to Los Angeles many years ago. Someone asked me to help them write a screenplay. I ended up writing the entire screenplay and Warner Brothers Studios bought it from me. That’s how I began – not with books but with movies. I don’t have anything particular to communicate to people through my writing. Not in general. I just like to try and tell a good story.
What do you have in mind in the future? And Mr. Duncan, what can fans expect regarding new projects in terms of your career? A new book? A new movie? A TV series?
I’m working on several screenplays at the moment. One of them is almost financed – an epic war/love story about the only woman who ever served in the French Foreign Legion. And also hopefully a new project with Henry – which is top secret for now.
Is there something special you would like to say to the fans of the Portal Henry Cavill BR website?
Just that I think Henry is very lucky to have such a great collection of fans. I’ve read many of your posts and what strikes me is how you are attracted to the finer qualities of people such as their good deeds and intentions rather than focusing on the more shallow aspects of their fame.
We want to thank Duncan Falconer for his kindness and availabilty. If you would like to know more about Falconer’s career, please access his website on www.duncanfalconer.com