Sean to the rescue in hospital medical DVD HOLLYWOOD movie star Sean Bean is known the world over for hit films such as Lord of the Rings which are enjoyed by millions of fans. But the 47-year-old's latest project is closer to home - because it has been inspired by love for his 89-year old grandmother Ann.
Sean, originally from Handsworth, has narrated a new medical DVD which will help hundreds of patients at the Northern General Hospital preparing for hip and knee replacement surgery. He put his instantly recognisable voice to the orthopaedic DVD after staff asked Ann, who has been treated at the hospital for joint problems, if she would sound out her famous grandson about taking part in the project. And to the amazement of medical staff Sean - who voice can also be head on O2 and Morrisons TV commercials - readily agreed.
Now the DVD is complete and is being given out to patients before surgery to help them prepare. Sean recorded the voiceover for free at his own expense in a London studio. Ann, from Ecclesfield, who has herself received a new hip and knee joint at the Northern General, and Sean's dad Brian, 71, were invited to the special screening to celebrate the launch.
"I think it's very good," said Ann, afterwards. "I've been treated very well at the hospital and when I asked Sean he was happy to help."
Ann - who has a collection of Sean's films at her home - said hearing her famous grandson narrate the DVD had been a pleasure. Big-hearted Sean has previously shown his support for the hospital by attending the opening of a new osteoporosis centre, where Ann was previously involved in a medical trial. Brian said the Bean family remain close-knit and he speaks to his son regularly for hours on the phone when he's in America. "He's the same as he's always been, and hasn't changed a bit. He's done well," added Brian.
Staff in the orthopaedic department still can't believe their luck in having such a big star narrating their patient DVD. Orthopaedic surgery manager, Andrea Watson, said: "It's fantastic as it started off as a joke when we were looking for someone with a good Yorkshire accent. Someone said how about Sean Bean? Then someone else remembered his granny had been treated here.
"From there it was a case of talking to Ann, then writing to Sean formally, and the team were amazed when he said 'yes'. "It's amazing. He's an A list Hollywood star but he went into a studio and recorded it between films. I never would have thought we'd have Sean Bean's voice on it."
Research shows that patients who know what to expect before joint replacement surgery recover more quickly. Each year around 1,300 patients are treated for hip and knee replacements at the Northern General and most are well enough to go home after six or seven days. 13 January 2007