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Tuesday, 15 May, 2001, 15:28 GMT 16:28 UK
Naked Welshmen turn heads at Cannes
Cast of A Heap of Trouble,
The cast spent two days in just their shoes and socks
A three minute film showing men parading naked through a south Wales housing estate has set pulses racing at the Cannes Film Festival.

A Heap of Trouble - which receives its official screening on Tuesday night - reveals the antics of a group of men aged between 30 and 70 walking around dressed in little more than their sock and shoes.

Catherine Zeta Jones
Zeta Jones is also due to unveil her Welsh-based film

According to director Lancashire-born Steve Sullivan, the Full Monty-style movie illustrates the group's struggle for emancipation in a suburban world dominated by women.

The low-budget production could steal the thunder of Catherine Zeta Jones's own film production launch at the international festival, Coming Out, which focuses on life at a Welsh rugby club.

"I was inspired by an article I read in which a professor was suggesting that Britain should return to the values of the 1940s where women stayed in the home and men were the breadwinners," explained Mr Sullivan.

"I thought this was such a ridiculous notion it set me wondering how men would go about reasserting their masculinity and it occurred to me that the only way to do it would be for them to strip naked.


We shot during the day when all the children were at school and most people just thought it was hilarious although there were a few raised eyebrows

Director Steve Sullivan

"I set it in a suburban housing estate because that is a very feminised environment."

But, he added, getting nine actors to spend two days filming the nude scenes on the Pontprennau housing estate in Cardiff, had not been without its logistical problems.

"Before we started shooting we leafleted all the houses in the street and asked if anyone objected to what we were doing," he said.

"We shot during the day when all the children were at school and most people just thought it was hilarious although there were a few raised eyebrows.

"One resident who was a policeman, came out and asked us if what we were doing was legal but by the end of the second day he was allowing us to film in his driveway."

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See also:

11 May 01 | Film
Naked ambition hits Cannes
10 May 01 | Film
Boosting Britain at Cannes
12 May 01 | Wales
Zeta Jones makes 'home' movie
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