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Jan 18 2012 Exclusive by Paul English
A SENIOR policeman has urged film fans to shun a new drama about Scottish gangster Paul Ferris.
Detective Chief Superintendent John Carnochan spoke out after a promotional trailer for the film was leaked online.
And he said he believed few people in Scotland would have any sympathy for the production, made by a
London-based company and shot down south.
The sympathetic trailer shows Ferris, known as “the enforcer”, as a victim who was bullied as a child and whose road into vicious career criminality came as a reaction against the “monsters” of his youth.
It also contains scenes similar to the 1980s classic childhood friendship film Stand By Me.
One shows Ferris as a young boy sitting around a fire with his childhood pals saying: “When we’re old, we’ll always be together.
“We’ll live in huge castles and be kings. We’ll fight monsters and demons.”
DCS Carnochan, head of Strathclyde Police’s Violence Reduction Unit, said last night it was wrong that people should seek to profit from Ferris’s criminal career.
He added: “There comes a point in our understanding of the importance of the effect of early years has on later life when you’re beyond the point of saying, ‘You’re worthy of our empathy.’
“I’ve seen nothing of the film, so it’s hard to comment completely, but I understand why people will have a problem with this.
“I don’t think that anyone should profit from criminality. Whoever they are and at whatever stage, I think it’s wholly inappropriate.”
The film stars Greenock-born Sweet Sixteen actor Martin Compston in the lead role, with support from Hollywood Scots John Hannah and Denis Lawson.
Hannah plays Ferris’s former enemy Tam “The Licensee” McGraw, while Lawson plays his father.
Opening scenes see the young child Ferris climbing walls around his home in Blackhill in Glasgow’s east end, walking his dog and making “forever friends” pacts.
Compston then emerges as the snarling adult Ferris, hell-bent on retribution against his childhood oppressors, growling: “Every single day of my life those b******s have bullied me. They sucked the life out of me. No f*****g more.”
The scenes are played out against a sentimental score of plaintive folk guitar.
No one from producers Carnaby Films was available last night.