10:11am PT by Alex Ritman
Winston Churchill's Grandson Defends 'Transformers: The Last Knight' Over Nazi Outrage
The grandson of Winston Churchill has attacked the media for generating "a completely manufactured" controversy about the birthplace of Britain's World War II prime minister being covered in Nazi iconography for the shoot of Transformers: The Last Knight.
On Sep. 23, The Sun published photos of Blenheim Palace, where Churchill was born in 1874, swathed in Swastikas, describing how actors in SS uniforms had been marching to the palace with Nazi artillery. The publication quoted ex-British Army commander Colonel Richard Kemp, who said the wartime leader would be "turning in his grave."
But speaking to The Guardian Monday, Nicholas Soames — a Conservative politician and Churchill's grandson — described the ensuing fuss "absolutely the most dismal, idiotic story I've ever read."
"They do as all newspapers do," he said of the initial article. "They go until they can find some wretched veteran who is prepared to say, ‘Winston would be turning into his grave.’ They’ve no idea what my grandfather would have thought!"
Responding to the outrage on Friday, director Michael Bay said that Churchill was a "big hero" in the film and "would be smiling."
Added Soames: "It’s preposterous. Why can’t they make a film at Blenheim 75 years after [the war ended]? It’s absurd. That’s all I have to say; it’s pathetic."