When approaching the film, Clegg felt that it was very important to remember that he was directing a piece of drama and could not get bogged down with every little detail. However, his duty to depict the characters in an honest way, neither glamourising nor deglamourising them, was foremost in his mind. Clegg's research was gained mostly by speaking to Andy McNab, partly because of time restraints and also because there is very little information available on the SAS, due to it being such a secret and highly specialised regiment within the army.
"To have the assistance of Andy McNab, who was one of the characters and knew all the people, has been tremendous for factual detail and has emotionally helped the actors," says Clegg. "It has been important to learn, through Andy, the strengths and weaknesses of each character. They were highly trained, but good people. There is a lot of humour and this is good for the film, because the characters don't take themselves seriously the whole time, they are not gung-ho heroes."
McNab comments, "In my environment collaboration has a very important meaning, so for me to help out has been great. We all work together as a team. I am emotionally involved with this project so I want it to look right, to reflect what it was about. Obviously we can't have everything in detail, there just isn't the time, but everyone is working hard towards making this film brilliant. During the first contact, I looked at the actors and thought that they really looked the part, everything is very authentic."
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