New Scottish documentary, Charlie’s Army to hit STV screens this June

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As part of STV’s four-part Incredible Stories series, Charlie’s Army follows the story of proud Scot, Charlie Allan and his band of bearded, battle-re-enactment, fort-building bikers, who've started their very own 21st Century Scottish clan.
The program documents Charlie’s life from early childhood, where even as a child, he had a keen interest in Scottish clan history, to the larger than life character that has Clan Chief in his title and Hollywood superstar Russell Crowe on speed dial.
Not many men start their own clan (Clanranald), muster their own army (Combat International) and create their own heavy metal bagpipe band (Saor Patrol), that regularly plays to sell-out crowds all over Europe. Charlie is also in the process of building his own fortified medieval village (Duncarron), just outside Stirling.
This huge project alone would break many lesser men, but for Charlie it’s the dream that has helped him forge ahead, and now, helped by clan members, volunteers, assorted friends and some very enthusiastic support from his mate Russell Crowe, that dream is finally becoming a reality.
The programme shows Russell talking to Charlie about the clan and about their first, iconic meeting on the movie set of Gladiator, and later again in the film version of Robin Hood. We see clips of them working together in these movies, and gain a fascinating perspective on the character, struggles and achievements of this likeable giant of a man and his army of supporters.
Now that the huge fort at Duncarron is almost ready to open to the public, his private army is in constant demand from international film companies, and the wild music of Saor Patrol is climbing up the European Charts, this fascinating, action-packed and entertaining documentary is ready to hit STV screens.
Elizabeth Partyka, Deputy Director of Channels at STV, said: “Charlie’s Army is an incredible story of a man who is so proud to be Scottish, he set up his own clan. I am delighted to be showing this documentary to STV viewers and hope they find it as fascinating as I did.”
Charlie Allan, Clan Chief of the Clanranald Trust for Scotland, said: “When I first set up the Clanranald Trust, its purpose was to build a fortified village that gave as accurate an account as possible of what life would have been like in Scotland in the early medieval period.
Primarily built for schools and groups to utilise as an educational facility, the Trust and Duncarron have also become a social enterprise venture that will provide a lifetime of social benefits for volunteers, the unemployed and the justice reform service now and in the future.
Duncarron has already become a film set location for small projects, and friends of the trust like Russell Crowe have discussed larger budget movies being filmed there. I always knew if we built Duncarron people would come. It holds an interesting pull for many and has provoked world wide curiosity.
For me personally the Trust and Duncarron has become my whole life. Even when I'm not there, I'm abroad promoting it and raising funds or I'm on a film set with 50 of the Clanranald combat team, Combat International, making exciting movies and raising even more funds.
The programme is pacy and full of impact and made big hairy volunteers shed tears of happiness. It tells our story to the world, acknowledging all the years of hard work and dedication that our modern day clan has accomplished to date.
Onwards and Upwards!”
Charlie’s Army is a STV commission and was produced by independent production company 1A Productions.
Norman Stone, Director/Producer at 1A Productions, said: “Charlie Allan is a born leader, a natural warrior and a fascinating subject for television. He entertains, challenges and inspires in equal measure. You won't have met anyone quite like him before.”
Incredible Stories is sponsored by Weatherseal.
Charlie’s Army – 8pm, Tuesday 5 June 2012 on STV
Press Contacts:
Lauren Ferson - / 0141 300 3290
Kirstin Stevenson - / 0141 300 3670