WHAT IS IT?
HUGH Jackman plays disgraced American coach Bronson Peary, who helps British amateur winter Olympian Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards, played by Taron Egerton of Kingsman: The Secret Service fame, to the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics amid international adulation and condemnation.
WHAT’S IT ABOUT?
In the words of Hugh Jackman, this feel-good film is a blend of the unlikely ambitions of the Jamaican bobsled team in Cool Runnings and the amateur perseverance of Billy Elliot.
The plot focuses on Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards’ journey from aspiring downhill skier to amateur ski-jumper at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics as Great Britain’s first-ever competitor in the sport.
As Edwards’s fame begins to grow, so does opposition and ridicule from the ski-jumping establishment, with event organisers even asking the long-sighted Edwards not to compete at one point. Peary, played by Jackman, supports and tutors Edwards, even though the real-life plasterer from Cheltenham never had one as he was entirely self-funded.
DOES IT LOOK ANY GOOD?
As a motivational story of against-the-odds competition, the Dexter Fletcher-directed picture looks set to be popular when it lands next February, with early previews of the film praising Egerton’s transformation from svelte Kingsman spy to the clumsy, underbite-sporting Edwards.
The real-life Edwards, however, has expressed concern over the authenticity of the storyline, suggesting that parts of the tale may be embellished for the movie.
• Eddie the Eagle is set for release in cinemas April 2016