The actor who starred as the banjo player in the hillbilly thriller Deliverance is to appear with the instrument in Tim Burton's new movie.
Billy Redden was 16 when Deliverance was made in 1972, but he hasn't appeared on screen since then. He was found working as a cook and dishwasher in a cafe in Dillard, northeast Georgia, by members of Burton's production crew, says the New Yorker.
Burton, who was on location in Alabama shooting Big Fish, said he wanted Redden for the film. He said: "The banjo boy was such an iconic figure to me. Whatever that visceral thing is in film, when you can't explain why a scene grabs you - well, that scene had it."
Redden was hesitant about appearing in the film because he hadn't liked Burt Reynolds during the making of Deliverance. Redden said: "He wasn't polite. And he made us look real bad. He said on television that all people in Rabun County do is watch cars go by and spit."
Redden didn't actually play the banjo in Deliverance. Director John Boorman had to use another boy to hide behind the swing Redden was on and slip his hand through Redden's sleeve to finger the changes. In Big Fish, due out next month, Redden is on screen for only a few seconds with his banjo.
He said: "Tim Burton said, 'Just sit there and hold that banjo, that's it.' He was a real nice guy, a lot nicer than Burt Reynolds."
Deliverance banjo boy reappears for new film: