Trainspotting 2: Catching up with Renton and co. 20 years on
The first full-length trailer for T2: Trainspotting has been released, and despite having a name that makes it sound like a mashup with The Terminator, it’s a cracker. Thankfully there’s no Arnie here, as Danny Boyle returns to the director’s chair as do original cast members Ewan McGregor, Ewen Bremner, Jonny Lee Miller and Robert Carlyle. Here we take a look at:
- What we know so far
- What the film is based on
- What Ewan McGregor, Ewen Bremner, Jonny Lee Miller and Robert Carlyle have been up to since the first film
What we know so far
Twenty years on from the events of Trainspotting, much has changed in Edinburgh. As Renton (Ewan McGregor) acknowledges in the trailer, this is now a world of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and zero-hours contracts. The trailer opens with Renton and Sick Boy (Jonny Lee Miller) meeting up for the first time after the heist and betrayal of the original film, which it appears to echo with psychedelic segues and hints of violence, as well as copious amounts of illicit substances.
Arguably the most memorable character from the first film, Carlyle’s Begbie returns sporting a moustache that would make Tom Selleck proud. And he appears to have lost none of his red-blooded rage. It appears that the gang are planning more dodgy shenanigans.
The film will be loosely based on Irvine Welsh’s 2002 novel Porno, which is itself a sequel to his Trainspotting novel.
What the actors have been up to?
To say a lot has changed since Trainspotting was released on August 15, 1996, is an understatement. Back then, John Major was still Prime Minister, England had just gone out on penalties to Germany in Euro 96 and the Spice Girls were number one in the UK music charts with their debut single “Wannabe”. Here’s what the Trainspotting stars have been doing since we met them two decades ago.
When McGregor took the role of Mark Renton, he’d only previously appeared in three films, including the Danny Boyle-directed crime drama Shallow Grave. Trainspotting’s transatlantic success catapulted McGregor into the Hollywood stratosphere, and he went on to star as a young Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars prequel trilogy, as well as taking parts in films as varied as the musical Moulin Rouge, war film Black Hawk Down and Jim Carrey comedy I Love You Phillip Morris. Earlier this year he directed his first feature, American Pastoral.
Bremner is best known for playing Spud in the 1996 film, but like the rest of the cast, he’s since gone on to enjoy Hollywood success. The period 2000-2001 was a particularly purple patch: he played the role of Mullet in Guy Ritchie’s gangster flick Snatch, co-starred with McGregor in Black Hawk Down and also played a lieutenant in Pearl Harbor.
Jonny Lee Miller
In 1996, Miller married the then little-known actress Angelina Jolie, who he met on the set of Hackers, but they were divorced in 1999. He later married model Michele Hicks in 2006, and they have a son together. Following Trainspotting, Miller went on to appear in films like Mansfield Park and Dracula 2000. He was later nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Scottish Film when he starred as Graeme Obree in The Flying Scotsman in 2006. In recent years, he’s best known for playing an updated version of Sherlock Holmes in the American detective series Elementary.
A year after starring in Trainspotting, Carlyle took the lead in the smash hit British comedy-drama The Full Monty and won a BAFTA Award for Best Actor. He was later cast as villain Renard in the 1999 James Bond film The World Is Not Enough and starred as Don Harris in zombie-apocalypse film 28 Weeks Later, the sequel to Danny Boyle’s 2002 film 28 Days Later.