Robert Carlyle’s directorial debut to open EIFF 2015
Robert Carlyle as Barney Thomson

Edinburgh International Film Festival (EIFF) today announced that the Opening Night film for 2015 will be the Glasgow-set thriller The Legend of Barney Thomson, starring and directed by EIFF Honorary Patron, Robert Carlyle.

The film also stars Emma Thompson, Ray Winstone and Tom Courtenay, alongside Ashley Jensen, Martin Compston, Brian Pettifer, Kevin Guthrie, James Cosmo, Stephen McCole and Samuel Robertson, with a screenplay by Colin McLaren and Richard Cowan.

Based on the book The Long Midnight of Barney Thomson, the film is a dark comedy that tells the story of Barney (Carlyle), an awkward barber who inadvertently stumbles into serial murder, with both absurd and macabre consequences. Complicating matters further, Barney’s mother Cemolina (Thompson) has a secret of her own, causing a bloody and comedic chain of events.

While Barney clumsily tries to cover his and his mother’s tracks, the local police inspector Holdall (Winstone) fights his own battles within his inept homicide department as he tries to solve the crime of the century. A black comedy of errors unfolds as the police try to capture the murderer at large.

Filming on The Legend of Barney Thomson began in Glasgow in June 2014 and it will premiere on on Wednesday 17 June at Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre.

Robert Carlyle said: “After a career-long association with EIFF it gives me enormous pleasure to have The Legend of Barney Thomson chosen as Opening Night film. It really is such an honour for me to have my first feature as director premiered here in Edinburgh at the Festival that has played such a huge part in my life.”

Mark Adams, the new Artistic Director of EIFF said: “We are thrilled to be opening this year’s Festival with Robert Carlyle’s wonderful black comedy. It is a marvellously macabre and playful film, impressively directed and with a terrific cast. It is the perfect film to kick off what promises to be an exciting festival.”

Visit the EIFF website for more information on this year’s festival.

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