Bill Douglas: Childhood Trilogy in Le Monde: Justified Sinner

Bill Douglas: Childhood Trilogy

Three of the most compelling films about childhood and adolescence – ever made – released for the first time on DVD by BFI.

Bill Douglas has always been appreciated in France but the enthusiastic response of the cinephile media to the DVD release two weeks ago of the Trilogy shows that his status is now higher than ever. He is spoken of as in the ‘pantheon’ of British directors.

It is particularly gratifying to read a glowing tribute to Bill’s work by Thomas Sotinel in Le Monde*. His piece also recognises the role the British Film Institute played in helping the young Scot get his first feature film off the ground in the early 1970’s – and contains a reference link to an account on this very website: Bill Douglas – his ain man – (as published by Sight and Sound in 1991)

It is my greatest regret that after I commissioned Bill to write a screenplay adaptation of James’ Hogg’s 19th Century Classic, Confessions of a Justified Sinner, no funding was forthcoming to make what I believe was a personal and inspired adaptation. I stand by what I said in the article more than 20 years ago:

I hope that when the film is made — and it will be — I can, in my mind at least, make peace with him.

* published at http://www.lemonde.fr/culture/article/2013/07/30/bill-douglas-une-enfance-en-ecosse_3455298_3246.html subscription only,  but may be read in full if you put ‘Le Monde’ and ‘Bill Douglas’ into your search engine!

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