Bottom Lines

by Rik Mayall Interviews And Articles Archive Blog

By Fleur Michell,, July 2000

British comic actors Ade Edmondson and Rik Mayall admit that they like nothing more than sitting down and thinking up ways to injure their various body parts. And it’s obvious that more than a little brainstorming in the ouch department went into the making of their new movie, Guest House Paradiso, which opens this week.

The pair reprise their roles as Richie and Eddie from their hit series Bottom, obnoxious owners of a disastrously run hotel. Along the way, they get into all manner of eye-watering strife, including Richie having his head slammed in an oven, two metal hooks being inserted up Eddie’s nostrils, a pencil shoved in Eddies eye, and Richie having same rubber underwear heat-fused to his bum.

“I thought the scene of my bullocks getting squashed was really well thought-out and executed,” says Rik, recalling one leg-crossing scene. “But we’ve done this kind of comedy for so long now, it’s hard to keep coming up with stuff,” adds Ade. “One reason we stopped making Bottom was that we’d already hit each other with everything in the flat.”

The pair, recently in Australia to promote the flick, say they’ve never actually been hurt by each other, although Rik did once knock himself out during shooting by walking into a camera. “It’s not so bad,” he says. “You go out, come round, and everyone thinks you’re great.”

And he laughs off the motorcycle accident where he really did damage his noggin two years ago. “Did it change my perspective on life? Yeah, because when I came to I was lying on the floor. It’s just made me the same, only alive.”

Scotching rumours of a Young Ones reunion (“it would just took like when The Monkees got back together — sad,” says Ade), the pair are content to work on more projects involving their Bottom characters, and have just released a video — Bottom Live.

“These two characters fill in the bits of each other; they’ve become bigger than we are,” explains Ade, who’s just directed the pilot for wife Jennifer Saunders’ new sitcom, Mirrorball. And what do they think of Australia? “I love it here,” says Ade. “It’s just like England — but without the bollocks.”