Ewan McGregor finds African trek oddly peaceful

Wed Jul 30, 2008 12:25pm EDT
 
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Alex Dobuzinskis

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Actors Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman braved the specter of armed kidnappers and fierce hyenas when they set out on a motorcycle journey in Africa but what they encountered was quite different: little violence and curious kids.

A documentary film, "Long Way Down," which shows just how peaceful their journey was, will enjoy a brief run in theaters starting on Thursday, then appear on television on the Fox Reality Channel beginning on Saturday.

McGregor, 37, star of the recent "Star Wars" movies, said the documentary of his three-month trek from Scotland to South Africa upends many past portrayals of Africa.

"We are bombarded with two things, images of famine and wildlife, and we (McGregor and Boorman) always felt that there's a lot of other sides to that continent and I hope that we showed that," he told Reuters.

Shot in 2007, "Long Way Down" is a follow-on to McGregor and Boorman's 2004 journey from London eastward to New York. On that trip, they passed through Europe, Asia and North America. That trip was captured in the documentary "Long Way Round."

"Long Way Down" starts with McGregor and Boorman in England gearing up for the trip by taking a survival course. One instructor warns them to sleep with their heads in their tents to avoid hyena bites. In a life-like training scenario, armed kidnappers ambush the celebrities.

But McGregor said all the concern about dangers proved to be overblown. "We didn't come across any trouble at all, contrary to a lot of the advice we got," he said.

CURIOUS KIDS, FLOWER FARMERS   Continued...

 
<p>Actor Ewan McGregor smiles during a panel for the Fox Reality series "Long Way Down" at the Television Critics Association 2008 summer press tour in Beverly Hills, California July 11, 2008. McGregor and Charley Boorman braved the specter of armed kidnappers and fierce hyenas when they set out on a motorcycle journey in Africa but what they encountered was quite different: little violence and curious kids. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>