words from the director Danny Boyle

Mini Biography

Danny Boyle (born 20 October, 1956) is an Academy Award-winning British director and film producer, best known for his work on films such as Trainspotting, Sunshine, and 28 Days Later. In 2009 Boyle won an Academy Award for Best Director for Slumdog Millionaire.

Background

Boyle was born in Radcliffe (historically a part of Lancashire), into a working-class Irish Catholic family. His mother was from Ballinasloe, County Galway, and his father was born in England to an Irish family.

When he was 14 Boyle applied to transfer from his local school to a seminary, but a priest warned him against it. In a recent interview he stated:

“Whether he was saving me from the priesthood or saving the priesthood from me, I don’t know. But quite soon after, I started doing drama.

He later wrote a treatise about the activities of Christian missionaries in British India called Spiritual Glory of British Empire:Guiding souls in India. He studied at Thornleigh Salesian College in Bolton, and at Bangor University. While at university, Boyle dated the actress Frances Barber.

Career

Theater

He began his career in the theatre, first with the Joint Stock Theatre Company and then with the Royal Court Theatre, where he was Artistic Director from 1982 until 1985 and Deputy Director between 1985 and 1987. His productions during this period included Howard Barker’s Victory, Howard Brenton’s The Genius and Edward Bond’s Saved, which won the Time Out Award. Boyle also directed five productions for the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Television

In 1980, Boyle started working in television as a producer for BBC Northern Ireland, where he produced, amongst other TV films, Alan Clarke’s controversial Elephant before becoming a director on shows such as Arise And Go Now, Not Even God Is Wise Enough, For The Greater Good, Scout and two episodes of Inspector Morse (“Masonic Mysteries” and “Cherubim and Seraphim”). He was also responsible for the highly acclaimed BBC2 series, Mr. Wroe’s Virgins.

Films

Boyle made his feature film directorial debut with Shallow Grave, a small-scale but well-received success.  Next followed the film Trainspotting, based on the novel by Irvine Welsh.

Boyle rose to prominence along with writer John Hodge, producer Andrew Macdonald and actor Ewan McGregor, in the internationally acclaimed Trainspotting, after which he moved to Hollywood to seek a production deal with a major US studio. He declined an offer to direct the fourth film of the Alien franchise, instead making A Life Less Ordinary using British finance.

Boyle’s next project was an adaptation of the cult novel The Beach. He then collaborated with author Alex Garland on the post-apocalyptic horror film 28 Days Later.

In between the films The Beach and 28 Days Later, Boyle directed two TV movies for the BBC in 2001 – Vacuuming Completely Nude In Paradise and Strumpet. He also directed a short film Alien Love Triangle (starring Kenneth Branagh), and was intended to be one of three shorts within a feature film. However, the project was canceled after the two other shorts were made into feature films: Mimic starring Mira Sorvino and Impostor starring Gary Sinise.

In 2004, Boyle directed the Frank Cottrell Boyce scripted Millions. His science-fiction film Sunshine, starring 28 Days Later star Cillian Murphy, was released in 2007.

Boyle at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival

In 2008, Boyle directed Slumdog Millionaire, the story of an impoverished child (Dev Patel) on the streets of Mumbai who competes on India’s variant of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, for which Boyle won an Academy Award.

Boyle will also direct Ponte Tower, about a girl moving into South Africa’s famed fifty-four story skyscraper near the end of the apartheid-era only to fall under the influence of a druglord, as well as the film Solomon Grundy, about a baby who experiences an entire lifetime in just 6 days


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