Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr Viber
Trending On Empire
The Big 2015 Movie Preview
The 50 Best Films Of 2014
Review Of The Year 2014
Subscribe to Empire!
Save up to 63%
Want To Be An Empire Journalist?
We're looking for reporters for the LFF

Kevin Macdonald On The Eagle
We talk to the director about his latest epic
More Interviews

The Eagle (2011)
Empire Star Rating
Fantastic Four (2015)
Empire Star Rating
Magic Mike XXL (2015)
Empire Star Rating
Jupiter Ascending (2015)
Empire Star Rating
Foxcatcher (2015)
Empire Star Rating
More new cinemas releases
DVD & Blu-ray releases

Channing Tatum And Jamie Bell Webchat
The Eagle's stars pop in for a bacon sarnie

submit to reddit

What have The Romans ever done for us, eh? Well, amongst other things (roads, language, civilisation as we know it) they eventually gave us a movie starring Channing Tatum and Jamie Bell - one by the name of The Eagle. And as the two stars were in town, we asked them round for a little webchat, and they happily obliged. So read on for details on dance-offs, bacon sandwiches and "hot water incidents". Ooo-err.

Channing Tatum And Jamie Bell Webchat

_amzz_ says: What was the funniest thing that has happened on set guys?
Jamie Bell: Channing dunked our director, Kevin, into a freezing cold river after he put us through weeks of misery and torture. So that was pretty amazing.

Channing Tatum: I dragged Kevin into the water after weeks of actual, physical torture.

RomanSoldier says: Were you guys ever fascinated by that time in history?
Channing Tatum: Absolutely. I love history, it was one of my favourite subjects in school, I guess because of the characters and stories, but doing the film has intrigued me even more.

Jamie Bell: I was, but I didn't know that much about the Roman occupation of Britain to be honest. But we've all grown up with that time in history being represented in film - the period just has great stories.

Q says: Did Chan and Jamie get to keep any of the set props/costumes? If so what?
Jamie Bell: Channing stole all of his! On the last day he took his armour and sword and jumped in the car.

Channing Tatum: Not true! Actually I have a tradition that I always steal my last costume on the last day of filming.

jessfung8 says: what was your favourite part of filming The Eagle?
Channing Tatum: Being carried by my good friend Jamie here, all the way through Scotland essentially.

Jamie Bell: I think for me it was the horseriding and the thrill of reverting to childhood - you dream of wielding swords and riding horses as a kid.

Big_Pants says: Channing, did your experiences at Military school help when it comes to performing fight scenes and stunts? I always picture TAPS when anyone says they're at military school...
Channing Tatum: Great movie, TAPS. But I did not go to military school. So sorry that that piece of information is out there. I do not know how to get it back.

Clairey says: Will you be doing another film together someday? How about a dance-off type flick?
Channing Tatum: I would like to do a musical version of this film, but the producers shut it down. Just kidding!

Jamie Bell: We tried to get some dance sequences in The Eagle, but it just didn't work out...

m says: How do you prepare for a role in a historical film? Do you find it more difficult to draw on your own experiences when you're playing characters who were alive hundreds of years ago?
Channing Tatum: Yeah of course. I mean, playing someone that obviously existed so long ago, it's hard to imagine what they had to go through, but at the end of the day it's just someone trying to figure out who he is because he never knew his father.

Jamie Bell: The film is definitely not a history lesson - it's very much an adventure, but yeah, but I did do a bit of research on the tribe of the Brigantes.

Dee says: I saw the rough cut of the Eagle a year ago, and also went to the premiere on Wednesday... what made you change the ending? And way to go guys, you both did a flippin' sick job!
Jamie Bell: Thank you for coming to the premiere! You made it a great night. I prefer the original ending myself, but what can you do?

Channing Tatum: Nice! Thank you. I think we were trying to go for the not-obvious ending and try to do something more symbolic, to not end the movie in a very traditional way, because we as characters rose above the task we started with. But going through all that and not also achieving what we set out to seemed wrong. It's called The Eagle, so you know we're going to deal with that.

jessfung8 says: Chan how painful was the hot water incident?
Channing Tatum: More painful than ever these little words could describe.

Jamie Bell: I can only imagine how painful that must have been... Hilariously, while Channing was racing to the hospital, 'My Sex Is On Fire' comes onto the radio. The irony!

Channing Tatum And Jamie Bell Webchat
Channing Tatum stars as Marcus Aquila in The Eagle

syerah says: Who's your idol and why?
Channing Tatum: Jack Kerouac, just because we were just having a conversation about him last night, and On The Road one of my all-time favourite books, and the lifestyle that they led was very free and unbridled.

Jamie Bell: Kerouac is a good call!

Kiva says: Have you two ever met before the making of this movie, or heard of each others' work?
Channing Tatum: Yes, both.

Jamie Bell: Yes, both. I was very aware of Channing's work ever since A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints.

Channing Tatum: We actually had attempted to act together a few times but never got a job together. Very happily, got to work together on this movie. I had obviously been a fan of Mr Bell's achievements beforehand.

Big_Pants says: The chemistry between the two of is important to the story, is there a real life bromance going on?
Channing Tatum: Yeah, of course. It was a very complicated thing, enjoying each other's company so much and then having to have tension and dislike and disdain for each other in the movie.

Jamie Bell: For sure! It's interesting how hard it is to act like you hate each other...

cdngirlsuz says: Why did they change the title from "Eagle on the Ninth" to just "The Eagle"?
Jamie Bell: Because then it would sound like a golfing movie! Like 'Bogey On The Fifth' or something...

Darth Marenghi says: Question for Jamie: Is there a particular role that you'd really love to play one day? Or do you not think that far ahead?
Jamie Bell: It's really hard to think that far ahead. You take the roles as they come, try to take things that challenge you. That's the plan I like to stick to.

Lee47 says: What's your favourite movie?
Channing Tatum: I would love to be able to say just one. I have all different types of favourite movies for different things. But Legends of the Fall is awesome, Gladiator's awesome. Cool Hand Luke is awesome, The Hustler is awesome. And The Goonies is awesome.

dardpo says: Do you have any recurring dreams?
Jamie Bell: That's a really good question! I used to think my Auntie's house would fall down, in a Buster Keaton way.

Channing Tatum: I have the flying dream a lot where I'm jumping off a building and just flying around.

Laauuriiss says: Who is your favourite singer? Kisses from Madrid
Channing Tatum: Thank you for kisses. Adele, the first person who comes to mind.

Jamie Bell: Love Madrid! Was just there... My favourite singer? It's definitely Channing.

georgia says: Channing, is there going to be a part 2 of G.I Joe?
Channing Tatum: I don't know. I know that there is a script, but I haven't really engaged yet.

Hi says: Jamie, what has it been like working with Spielberg on Tintin? Is it similar to working with Peter Jackson?
Jamie Bell: Um, they both have their own individual styles. It was such an honour. The guys are amazing, and they are huge fans of Tintin. I've seen some of the movie, and it looks awesome. Mo-Cap has never been better.

khower23 says: What was it like working with Donald Sutherland?
Channing Tatum: He's a legend, he's been acting longer than I've been alive. Professional, but loves telling dirty jokes. Jamie geeks out when he's around Donald Sutherland.

Jamie Bell: Donald's a great guy. He has huge testicles.

Channing Tatum: I actually don't know how to follow that.

Jamie Bell: We're still laughing about Donald's balls.

Channing Tatum: This is what happens when you let a Northern Brit take control of the keyboard.

Channing Tatum And Jamie Bell Webchat

dardpo says: Channing, sometimes you seem to suffer from feelings of guilt. Have you ever felt yourself like you're a bad guy?
Channing Tatum: I think we all suffer from guilt at some point in our lives, but for the most part I never really regret, and I try to always remain positive. Yes, I think that those issues are very interesting to play in a character, and they're prominent issues in life, and I think people can relate to them.

NikkiC says: What is your favourite film you have starred in and why?
Jamie Bell: Good question. And a hard question to answer. Really proud of everything I do. Kong was such an achievement from Peter - it was a dream come true for me.

Channing Tatum: Right, favourite film, probably A Guide to Recognising Your Saints because it was a very personal story to me.

Lis_x says: I wrote an essay for uni that was based on Channing's role in Dear John (I got 70% for it, so thank you!). Who have been your main inspirations throughout your careers?
Channing Tatum: 70%? Solid. Inspirations: Jamie Bell has been a seminal actor in my study of the art.

Jamie Bell: Many different actors have been inspiring for me. Alec Guinness and Gielgud among many others.

Lydia says: I haven't seen it yet, but I trust in Kevin Macdonald, as he's constantly awesome. What was he like to work with?
Jamie Bell: Kevin is a great story teller, he is all about the realism. As a director who comes from a documentary background, the authenticity is all-important to him.

Channing Tatum: Kevin is a truly brilliant, brilliant man. I learned a lot.

Kesker says: Every person except for yourselves have been turned into zombies. This is your excuse to kill anyone you want (all in the name of survival of course). Who do you go to town on first?
Jamie Bell: Bush, probably, right?

Channing Tatum: A large number of politicians, all over the world.

Jamie Bell: Or is it even better to just leave him as a zombie?

Channing Tatum: Are they anything different actually?

Flexy says: what is your favourite dancer/choreographer and why? kisses from GIBRALTAR!
Channing Tatum: Mia Michaels probably.

Jamie Bell: Savion Glover, the great tap dancer. Not sure on spelling!

evs75 says: Channing, I loved your role in Public Enemies, what was the legendary Michael Mann like to work for?
Channing Tatum: Incredibly brilliant. He had an attention to detail to the point that he picked out my tie.

kimbaland90 says: Jamie - do you still get seen as Billy Elliot, or have people finally been able to move past that? And if so, do you mind always being seen as Billy...?
Jamie Bell: It's still the frame of reference for many people. Billy Elliot is no longer just a character, or a role I played - or even an international musical. It's an idea, and a concept of expression. And I feel privileged to have been a part of that.

Lydia says: If you were in Inception, who would you have played? You better have both liked it!
Channing Tatum: The spinning top.

bopper says: My surname is Aquilina which I believe is similar to your characters name Channing , am very interested to know if he was a real character in history? Forgive my ignorance on the background to this story. Feel a Google / family history session coming on!
Channing Tatum: Not to my knowledge. He wasn't a real person but he was the character in the original novel.

Channing Tatum And Jamie Bell Webchat
Jamie Bell as Esca in The Eagle

Camilla says: You guys have both dancing in your past... what about singing? Kisses from Italy, home of the Roman soldiers.
Channing Tatum: I would love to sing. I would love to do a musical, but I wouldn't say that that singing is my strong suit.

Jamie Bell: I'm definitely not a singer. I can hold a tune... if I had to.

Channing Tatum: That is so not true.

Lydia says: Is this the kind of film you always dreamed of making when you decided to become actors?
Channing Tatum: Actually yes!

Jamie Bell: Not really.... It's childhood dream, of course.

Marie says: Questions for Channing: Hello, I'm Marie, I'm a writer, free hug from France =P - What is the precise time of your life where you realised that your destiny was to become an actor and what are your feelings when you read the script?
Channing Tatum: Thank you for the free hug first - as opposed to how much do you charge for hugs in France? I would love to know the going price. But the precise time, I took an acting workshop and just loved it and knew that I really was never going to do anything else. As for the second question, depends no the script. But ultimately it's about who's directing and do I have any connection to the material.

Jamie Bell: For me, it's after I heard that song in Pinocchio. Weird, weird movie.

kimbaland90 says: I assume Empire if your favourite film magazine, of course, but do you guys read the film reviews about your films, or do you tend to avoid them?
Channing Tatum: I try at all costs to try to avoid them.

Jamie Bell: I agree Empire is the greatest movie magazine - THE GREATEST - but I stay away from reviews.

Seal warrior says: All right guys, how's it going? Planning on venturing back to Scotland anytime soon or are there too many cold memories?
Channing Tatum: More cold memories than I ever have planned on having in my entire life, but Scotland was one of the most beautiful places I've ever been, and I'd love to return, especially to have another ceilidh. And a scotch.

Jamie Bell: Scotland is amazing. It's a very important character in our film. Could do without the freezing rivers, though...

peachesr says: Have you ever had a moment onset, during this film or any other, when you were asked to do something and just thought, 'not a chance!'?
Channing Tatum: Unfortunately I'm not unwilling to do very much. So probably I haven't denied very many directors.

Jamie Bell: Yes, in The Eagle I would think that exactly that, then have to do it anyway...

SarahRhodzy says: Do either of you have any Broadway/West End theatre plans in mind for the future? Is it something you'd like to do?
Channing Tatum: I would love to do that. I know that Sienna Miller is doing a play right now. I haven't seen it yet, but I hear it's great. And Matthew Fox is doing one that I think I'm going to see tonight.

Jamie Bell: I'd love to do some theatre. I think it improves you as an actor. Just about timing, you know?

Helen Sim says: Channing - not film related as such but were you a dancer in Ricky Martin's "She Bangs" music video? I love it!
Channing Tatum: I was! But I wasn't a very cool dancer, I was just background. I don't even think I was dancing; I think I was flipping a bottle or something, it wasn't very interesting whatsoever. There were more people doing much cooler things.

carynnadz says: What is the most extreme scene you've ever filmed?
Channing Tatum: The river scene in The Eagle.

Jamie Bell: Channing's right - it doesn't get much worse than that.

arcticmonkey says: Jamie - I worked at a film festival a few years back where we had what I believe was the first screening of Undertow, I was wondering what it is you look for that attracts you to a script or character when you get a script like Undertow sent to you?
Jamie Bell: David Gordon Green, the director, first and foremost -- just a chance to do something completely different.

_amzz_ says: What do you guys love about England?
Channing Tatum: I love England. I love your enthusiasm and the devotion to your daily drink. And just overall the humour and charisma of the people, I love it here.

Camilla says: In which country would you like to film a movie if you could choose?
Channing Tatum: Thailand. It's incredibly warm and there are cheap massages there.

Jamie Bell: Thailand does sound good, actually.

SarahRhodzy says: Chan - how did you find producing "Earth Made of Glass"? Would you like to produce again?
Channing Tatum: Yes, absolutely I would. I had sort of a very minor role in that one, but it was intensely fulfilling. And especially producing docs is an incredibly noble venture in any right. It's just very, very hard to get them made.

Kesker says: Is there a genre of film you haven't done yet but would absolutely love to?
Channing Tatum: Musical.

Jamie Bell: I'd love to direct a documentary... I just think documentaries are the best kind of movies.

Cottia says: Can I go back to the film The Eagle... Director Kevin McDonald spoke of imagining the story from The Eagle of the Ninth as a like Western. Is that partly how it has turned out? Do you think it worked?
Channing Tatum: I think so. It's very much in my opinion like The Searchers. It's two men going into the unknown and trying to survive almost unsurvivable territory and adventure.

Jamie Bell: I think it does work - Westerns focus on characters and landscape. Everything that this film is about.

Channing Tatum And Jamie Bell Webchat

Vicky says: Jamie, how was your experience on the set of Jane Eyre? Do you like literature? Which are your favourite novels?
Jamie Bell: I love Jane Eyre - the film experience was great. Carey, the director, is an amazing talent. Literature is the be all and end all of language.

RichMahogany says: All right chaps, pressing question now... Favourite Muppets?
Channing Tatum: Miss Piggy. Cause she's hot.

Jamie Bell: Kermit, innit.

kimbaland90 says: Have either of you experienced any practical jokes on set of any of your films? Or been the joker...?
Channing Tatum: Not me.

Jamie Bell: No, I was worried that Channing might pull some pranks now though - he keeps hitting me with a pencil. It's his way of showing affection.

Lydia says: Jamie - where do you keep your Bafta? If you say it's a doorstep, I'm going to hit you =p
Channing Tatum: That's the best post yet. Love the tongue face.

Jamie Bell: My mum has it.

Belometemvelo says: Loved the Eagle! Hugs from Switzerland! Did you guy have to exercise a lot to get physically ready for the Eagle?
Channing Tatum: I just had to run a lot. A LOT. A LOT. Basically Kevin said I was fat when I got there.

Jamie Bell: There was lots we had to prepare to be physically ready. But no dieting or physical trainers or anything.

FoodieFilm says: Big question! What are your favourite sandwiches?
Jamie Bell: BLT is taking the biscuit, but I also like egg salad - but a lot of people don't, I know.

Channing Tatum: Grilled cheese. And the bacon sandwich - this is something I've learned from Britain, the bacon sandwich. We do not have them in America and they are unbelievably awesome. Incredibly bad for you, but awesome. I'm not kidding, I walked in and Jamie and this huge bacon sandwich. I was like, "What's this?" He says it's a bacon sandwich, and I'm like, "Tell me everything!" This is why this question is always asked, I guess...

Jamie Bell: America has crappy bacon, you see.

castielsays says: Question for Jamie: is it true that you're going to shoot 28 Months Later? Or is it just a rumour? Kisses from Gran Canaria. We love you! X
Channing Tatum: Thank you for the kisses, kisses for you too. I have not heard anything about that, so really I have no idea what you are talking about.

cdngirlsuz says: What is the most difficult thing about being in showbiz that you wish you could change?
Jamie Bell: The amount of waste that I encounter. Needs to be more eco-friendly.

Channing Tatum: The TMZ paparazzi nation that has been born.

RomanSoldier says: The film is one of the best of the year by far in my opinion, would you consider doing a sequel?
Channing Tatum: Thank you so so much. That really means a lot to us, and I think we would love to.

Jamie Bell: Thank you very much! I don't there will be a sequel though...

arcticmonkey says: Jamie - You mentioned wanting to direct a documentary, is there any subject matter you have in mind that's important to you?
Jamie Bell: One on Kerouac would be amazing... I don't know yet. I appreciate Charles Ferguson as a filmmaker, and the great Errol Morris.

RuthCristina says: Channing - how is it to be an actor and to also have an actress-wife? Do you have enough time for each other?
Channing Tatum: We have to make time. But yes.

Channing Tatum And Jamie Bell Webchat

kimbaland90 says: Who's the most interesting famous person you have in your phonebook?
Jamie Bell: Channing Tatum.

Channing Tatum: Hmm. [looking through phone...] Jamie Bell.

RebzzJLSForever says: Channing; is your character in your movie anything like yourself?
Channing Tatum: Not sure. I never lost my father to Scottish tribesmen and then had to have Jamie Bell as a slave, to be fair.

tegels says: Did you read the original novel of Eagle of the Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliff that The Eagle was based on? If so, what did you think of it?
Jamie Bell: No. My introduction was Jeremy Brock's screenplay. I read the novel afterwards.

Channing Tatum: I read the script first and then Kevin MacDonald didn't want us to read the novel in the beginning because they had really adapted it in their own way.

Camilla says: Since the movie is about Roman soldier... Are you coming to Italy to promote it?
Channing Tatum: I don't know if we're going to Italy. I can't travel all that much because I just had surgery on my hip.

Hi says: Do you ever Google yourselves?
Jamie Bell: I try not to!

Channing Tatum: Never! I do not suggest it to anyone. It is a horrible, horrible idea - you leave feeling like you want to kill yourself.

forget_you says: If Jamie Bell were your slave for the day, what kind of stuff would you make him do?
Channing Tatum: Carry me around and make me bacon sandwiches. Plus I'd flog him on the regular.

Jamie Bell: I love Channing's sensitivity...

RichMahogany says: If you guys could cast yourselves in any role in cinema history, what would it be, and why?
Channing Tatum: Jamie bell in his life story. Strike that: Jamie Bell in Black Swan.

Jamie Bell: Hard to say... so many... too many...

guest4531 says: you both got your start in films that involve dance. Have you ever challenged each other to a dance off?
Channing Tatum: [quick break: Channing is trying on our Gladiator helmet] That's fuckin' great. I would like to wear this all the time. Imagine walking down the street with this: "'Sup?"

Channing Tatum: I beat Jamie at every game possible on the face of the planet, so a dance battle would not end any different.

Jamie Bell: Except for FIFA. I rule that game.

Channing Tatum: Okay fine, FIFA.

Flexy says: What style of dance are you both best at?
Jamie Bell: Tap dance. And is krunking with a k or a Chan?

Channing Tatum: Right Jamie, krunking, krunking I know. Ceilidh dancing. Or breakdancing.

Fatima says: Can you tell us about some up coming projects?
Channing Tatum: Going to do 21 Jump Street, with Jonah Hill. Big comedy.

Jamie Bell: As for me, well there's Tintin, Jane Eyre, and Man On A Ledge. I think all are opening this year. Yikes! Or "Great snakes!" As Tintin would say.

khower23 says: If you could start a band, what music would you play and what would the band's name be?
Jamie Bell: 'Poo Poo Platter', and they would play the blues.

Channing Tatum: I would start a ska band - just kidding. Blues would be good, or bluegrass. Bacon Sandwich would be my band's name.

Channing Tatum: As a closer, all the love and care and support to Japan and anyone else affected by our horrible news today.

Jamie Bell: Peace and love to the people affected by the tsunami... There are no words to sum up what we all woke up to this morning. It's truly tragic. Praying for all those people right now.

Empire Meets Ridley Scott
The great director on The Martian, Blade Runner 2 and the Prometheus sequels

Jessica Chastain On The Martian
On becoming an astronaut and rescuing Matt Damon AGAIN

My Movie Life: Justin Kurzel
The Macbeth director on how Rocky changed his life and the worst ever date movie

Life On Mars: Trips To The Red Planet
A dozen of cinema's Martian misadventures

Hallowed Ground: Folk Horror In British Film
Ten tales from our island's dark past

All Hail Macbeth! The Scottish Play On Film
By the pricking of our thumbs, ten adaptations this way come(s)

10 Star Wars: The Force Awakens Toys You’ll Want To Own
Falcon quad copter? BB-8 Sphero? We’re already asking for pay raises…

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Empire print magazine

Delivered to your door – with exclusive subscriber only covers each month! Save money today and

Subscribe now!

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Empire digital magazine

Exclusive and enhanced content – get instant access via your iPad or Android device! Save money today and

Subscribe now!

Subscribe now and save up to 63%
Print, Digital & Package options available Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire Digital Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  Digital Edition  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)