Tuesday, February 26, 2008

National identity...

Max Ryan, an actor, works with a sniper rifle on loan from the Lebanese Army.

“It brings back the memories,” said Emil Zir, 38, who fought near the building in the 1980s as a member of the Lebanese Forces, a Christian militia, and was twice wounded.

Another cast member, Abbas Sayed, returned to Lebanon for the first time since 1985 to work on the film. He remembers seeing the hospital, which also housed a school, in 1974, before the war started.

“It’s terrible to see it like this,” he said, gazing around at the blackened, graffiti-scrawled concrete structure, where water from recent rains dripped from huge gaps in the ceiling.

Nearby, shivering in the cold, stood Grant Masters, a chiseled 43-year-old British actor who plays the leader of the three-man private security team.

“When you’re standing next to someone who’s actually been on the front line, that’s a reality check,” he said. “We’re working with a guy who was shot nine times.”

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