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Issue 52 - Jack meets, shoots, and leaves

Whisky Magazine Issue 52
November 2005


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Jack meets, shoots, and leaves

Jack and Jean Oswald have turned their passion in to a hobby and business. Dominic Roskrow reports

They say film-makers and photographers make their own luck.

It's not so much a case of being in the right place at the right time, but knowing to be in the right place at the right time.

So for American whisky lover Jack Oswald, capturing Mickey Mouse as he arrived at Bunnahabhain during the Islay festival is up there in the ‘priceless' category.

“We had stopped at Edradour on the way to the festival to visit Iain Henderson,” Jack recalls. “We had tried to persuade him to come over with us but he refused.

“Then a week later Jim McEwan and John MacLellan were hosting the manager's night at the festival and in comes Iain dressed as Mickey Mouse. It brought the house down and I captured it on tape.

“No-one knew that he was coming and it was the first time I'd seen Jim completely off his guard.” This memory is just one of thousands that Jack and his wife have stored up while visiting the distilleries of Scotland, which they have filmed and put out on four DVDs in recent years.

If ever there were a great example of someone taking a passion and building a business around it, it is Jack Oswald. Having lived in, and fallen in love with, Scotland some years ago, he had nurtured the idea of working with whisky at some point.

But his full-time role as a documentary filmmaker at the head of a production company in Southern California meant that it was only in 2002 when he retired that he was able to pursue his interest in malt.

He teamed up with two former students ...

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