Eric Cantona back in his adopted hometown of Manchester. As well as visiting in person during production of the latest Ken Loach film (on the famous Keppel Road, Chorlton) and appearing at the premiere, Eric is currently gracing silver screens in cinemas all over Manchester (and across the world), thanks to his role in Looking for Eric where he stars as lui-même .It is great to see the eminent french football philosopher and scientist
It is a little known fact that Eric actually has a PhD, with a thesis titled (roughly translated from french):
Making it count with nonchalant gallic passing and scoring.
This prize winning thesis was awarded on graduation from The University of Old Trafford back in the summer of 1997, by the Faculty of Football Science under the supervision of Professor Alex Ferguson. The thesis hasn’t been published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal yet but a lot of the raw data is available on youtube. Eric knows a thing or two about the art and science of timing in football .
As for the film, it is not really about football (thank God, footy flicks have an atrocious track record in cinema) or Manchester United Football Club (too divisive) but a touching story about the power of the human imagination in overcoming adversity. Worth watching and very enjoyable, IMHO, you can read all about it in the local newsrag, The Manchester Guardian .
So whether you’re red, blue, white, black, seagull, sardine or a trawler – there is something for everyone in this film.
C’est bon or is it c’est bien? Je ne sais pas [gallic shrug]. Bienvenue à la maison Eric!
- Ken Loach et al (2009). Looking For Eric , Eric Cantona mosaic above by Mark Kennedy (markkennedy.co.uk)
- Michael Hopkin (2006). Goal fever at the World Cup: Why the first strike counts. Nature, 441 (7095), 793-793 DOI: 10.1038/441793a
- Simon Hattenstone (2009). The awkward squad: Ken Loach and Eric Cantona The Guardian