SIR Sean Connery’s son has told how he was terrified to show his famous father the draft for his new movie about golfing pioneer Old Tom Morris – because of the actor’s love of the sport.
But actor and director Jason Connery has revealed to The Scotsman how the Edinburgh-born star gave him “great ideas and insight” for his new film.
Jason said: “I actually sent him the first draft. It’s always a bit worrisome to do that, because usually the first draft is a bit fat and long, and there are things there that you know you’ll need to change.
“I sent it to him and said ‘this is early draft, but I’d love to get your thoughts’, and he was very encouraging and he had some real insight.
“He also gave some great notes, obviously because he has such great experience, but he comes from the idea of what is at the heart of a story from a character’s point of view.”
Jason Connery has also revealed he plans to shoot the forthcoming movie in and around St Andrews.
Based on Kevin Cook’s acclaimed book about the 19th century golfer, Tommy’s Honour will be shot on location later this year.
It focuses on four-time Open champion Old Tom Morris, widely considered the founder of the modern game, and his son, Tommy.
Morris was the son of a weaver from St Andrews who went on to design some of the world’s greatest courses, including Prestwick and Muirfield, and helped popularise the modern rubber golf ball.
He founded the Open Championship at Prestwick in 1860, and seven years later became its oldest winner, at the age of 46.
The film also explores his relationship with his son Tommy, a golfing great in his own right, who matched his father’s achievement with four Open wins, the first at the age of 17, managing the feat in consecutive championships.
Both men set records that still stand today, and have been recognised with induction into The World Golf Hall Of Fame.
Mr Connery explained how his passion for golf had come from playing with his father as a child, and had learned about Mr Morris during visits to Gleneagles.
The 51-year-old said: “I grew up, somewhat, on a golf course with my dad. When I wasn’t at school I was there, so the story really spoke to me,”
Mr Connery said he felt Tommy’s achievement was a blueprint for modern-day sportsmen and women.
He said: “He really pushed the boundaries of golf, and in some ways he was the first professional touring athlete. So, many athletes probably owe him for the fact that they’re making £150 million a year or whatever.”
An actor in his own right, best-known in the UK as Robin Hood in the 1980s ITV drama Robin of Sherwood, Mr Connery’s fifth film as a director, Tommy’s Honour, will be his first shot in Scotland.
He said the game portrayed in the film would not be considered the same type of golf played nowadays: “The golfing style is completely different. If you see the clubs they used, they’re like cudgels. I don’t know how they managed to hit the ball, let alone get it anywhere near the hole. Totally different style from now.
Though casting has not started yet, Mr Connery said his crew hoped to draw on local talent, adding there was “great talent and depth to the Scottish acting fraternity.”
Despite living in LA, the director said he maintains his links with Scotland, where he owns a cottage in the Borders, and wanted to make a film that “the people of Scotland will be proud of”.