According to today’s Daily Star newspaper: “This is an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for a parrot with a big personality. We hope to uncover the next A-list avian superstar. ”The lucky winning bird will first be used as the official “spokesparrot” for the DVD launch of the second swashbuckling adventure, ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: The Dead Man’s Chest’. It will then be flown to the island of Dominica, where it will join co-stars Johnny Depp and Keira Knightley to shoot the final film ‘At World’s End’. Owners hoping to get their parrot on the big screen have been given some expert advice on how to prepare their feathered friends for the gruelling auditions. Oh yea lets see what happens.
Borkowski won numerous awards for a similar scam back in 1989. We were given the job of publicising a production of Treasure Island, starring Frank Windsor, at the Mermaid Theatre that year. Not many people know where the theatre is. And at Christmas, most people want to go to panto. So we had to create an angle on it. In the end, we decided to hold open, public auditions for a parrot to take the part of Captain Flint. News programmes and newspapers love that kind of “and finally” story … “and finally to the amazing escape of Jimbo the Tortoise who accidentally travelled to the South of France in the engine compartment of his owner’s Ford Fiesta” – you know the kind of thing. So we set up the auditions, which attracted the first batch of coverage. A few days later we announced that a parrot belonging to the F1 racing driver, the late James Hunt had been cast. Strange, that – at the time James Hunt just happened to be the biggest racing driver in the world.
This might have been the end of story. But one of the stage-hands started teaching Hubert (that was the name of the parrot) some interesting vocabulary. The long and the short of it was Hubert started shouting “Fuck Off” whenever Frank Windsor touched him, on stage. He then bit Frank’s ear – or at least I believe he must have because I had a long chat with Frank about the bird being temperamental and not long after Frank started wearing a large bandage on his ear. Somehow, the papers got hold of this. Can’t remember how that happened exactly, but I have a dim memory of buying bandages in Boots during the Christmas rush.
Chapter three in this sorry saga, was the final, last-minute, panic hunt for a replacement. Luckily, we found a placid parrot, which bonded happily with Frank, for a final photo call. As I keep banging on about it’s about re-castingfact and information as an entertaining story. A bad-tempered parrot shouting obscenities and biting off an actor’s ear! Now that’s what I call news! How could the press resist it! Its stuff people want to read!
Let’s see if the scam for Pirates has three chapters eh