Gloucestershire

Eddie the Eagle says actor playing him in biopic is 'uncannily' like him

Composite image of Taron Egerton and Hugh Jackman (left) alongside Eddie 'The Eagle' Edwards Image copyright AFP/Getty Images
Image caption Taron Egerton and Hugh Jackman star in the biopic about Eddie "the Eagle" Edwards

Britain's best-known ski jumper, Eddie "the Eagle" Edwards, said the actor playing him in a film about his life is "uncannily" like him.

The movie, due to be released in April, stars Welsh actor Taron Egerton in the title role.

Edwards, who lives in Stroud, Gloucestershire, shot to stardom at the Calgary Winter Olympics in 1988 despite finishing a distant last.

He said "only about 5%" of the biopic would be true to life.

Image caption Eddie Edwards (right) said Taron Egerton (left) has got his mannerisms "just right"
Image copyright MARK CARWELL/AFP/Getty
Image caption "Eddie the Eagle" became one of the best-known athletes at the 1988 Winter Olympics

The former ski jumper, whose real name is Michael Edwards, said: "Taron has done a very, very good job.

"I sat down and chatted to him for an afternoon at Pinewood Studios back in March and it's amazing - he's got my mannerisms and everything else just right.

"It's uncanny how much he looks like me - he's wearing the glasses and got the hair style and moustache."

'A shock'

Edwards confessed he first signed a deal about 18 years ago to make a film about his life, "but I didn't think it was ever going to happen.

"Then [director] Matthew Vaughn phoned me while I was shopping in a supermarket in Stroud and said 'I've just bought the rights and we start filming in two months'.

"It was bit of a shock, but now it's about to be released so it's good news."

While Edwards said he had seen "about 70%-80%" of the finished film, he pointed out that "only about 5% of it is true".

He said a documentary and book about his life were also being planned "to tell the true story".

Eddie the Eagle, which also stars Hugh Jackman, is due to be released on 1 April.

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