But while Shane Meadows’ biopic-cum-concert-movie Made of Stone focused on the Roses, and the real-world implications of their recent reunion, Spike Island tells a fictional tale of a group of mates who go to ridiculous lengths to see the Baggy band at the height of their fame.
We recently sat down with Nico Miragello, who plays Dodge in the movie, to discus filming, chemistry and the reaction to the film back in Manchester.
The chemistry between the lads
Me and Elliott are best friends in real life, so the part could have not been more perfectly suited for me and Elliott to just go in and go, ‘boom’. The chemistry was there, we knew each other personally inside out, we knew the characters from the script inside out, and it was like, ‘let’s go and smash it’.
One thing that’s people have said about the film that’s really nice, is that the chemistry between the lads is there, which is something we tried to create, and make happen. To write a film about five young lads from Manchester, who have known each other since they were two years old and lived next door to each other, sometimes you can get on set and there’s a bit of tension, or it’s a bit weird because one of the actors isn’t joining in with the banter, or whatever, and this just – we clicked straight away.
The reaction to the film in Manchester
Me and Elliot went to Park Life, a little festival in Manchester at Heaton Park, and it was nice, because we were completely covered up, glasses, hoods up, and people were coming up to us going, “you’re in the new Spike Island film, can’t wait to see it”. That’s always nice to hear.
Hopefully we do it justice for them, because there are people who have set their heart on the film because they adore the Stone Roses, like we do. We want everyone to just enjoy it really.
The run-and-gun nature of the shoot
We’re quite ‘kick-bollocks-scramble’, if the sunrise is going that way, and the lads are facing that way, “let’s shoot the bastard. Let’s get it up and film what we can”. In that sense, I love all that, rather than, “let’s rehearse, let’s talk about the scene, let’s get into the character and see what he had for breakfast”. I like to shoot it, and if the director doesn’t like it, let him give you the note and say, “change it this way”, and then we can try it again.
Is Dodge a bad guy?
You’ve got to remember that these are kids still. They’re still 16 years old, and they still do things like, “that’s my ball. You’re not playing with my ball. If I’m not allowed to play, nobody’s allowed to play”. I had bit of an issue with that bit in the script, where Dodge takes the ticket off his best mate, and he’s not arsed about anyone else, but you’ve got to think about the whole picture behind it all. Dodge was very much the introvert, and solely about the music, and focused. I don’t even know if he particularly likes the girl, he just wants her because he wants to be a bit of a rock star. He wants to be John Squire. And I think in his head, he thinks he’s that genius as well. He emulates the haircut, the T-shirt that John Squire has from Top of the Pops. He’s very much a shy character that hides behind Tits.
What did they actually see on set?
We saw a lot of windy fields. That was the main bit. It was good actually, because they’d built this gate, this big 25 foot gate that guarded the actual event at Spike Island, so there wasn’t the actual gig there, obviously, that would require a few extra hundred million, but we saw fields and fields, and wind, , and rain, and sun, people. Lots of people, lots of extras. And it was great, because every extra came in the right costumes, they didn’t care about makeup shaving half their head, for that real 90s haircut or whatever, and they were proper getting into it: the swagger, the dancing. It was perfect. The vibe and the atmosphere on that set was just incredible, and you can’t create that, it’s just got to come from everybody.
But yeah, it wasn’t so much about what we saw, it was about the feeling during the filming, it was extraordinary. Honestly. I’ve done 15 jobs now,I’ve been doing it since I was 15, and that was one thing that will stay in my heart forever and ever.