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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Christian Abbott

Who is the real Brandon Lee from Netflix's My Old School and what is he doing now?

The story of Brandon Lee is one of the most bizarre in recent Scottish history.

He was a former medical student who, after failing his exams, tried his hand at school once again.

He changed his identity to that of a Canadian teenager and returned to the school he graduated from more than a decade previously.

His story is about to be told in Netflix ’s My Old School, which will premiere on the platform on July 22.

Alan Cumming is taking on the main role, with one of Brandon’s former classmates directing the documentary.

Who is Brandon Lee?

My Old School is available on Netflix from July 22, with Alan Cumming playing Brandon Lee (Magnolia Pictures/Youtube)

Brandon Lee was actually born Brian MacKinnon, but changed his name and identity to re-enrol in secondary school.

Back in 1993, Brian was a failed medical student, having been unsuccessful in his medical exams twice while at university.

After exhausting all options to return to medical school, he decided to go back to the secondary school he graduated from in 1980 to try and get better grades the second time around.

At the age of 30, Brian enrolled into Bearsden Academy, though this time known as 16-year-old Brandon Lee.

Bogus pupil Brandon Lee (aka Brian MacKinnon), with two friends (PA)

He used two references to get in, one from London and another from Canada - both were accepted on face value.

Once he was there, he spoke with a Canadian accent and told his fellow students and teachers that his parents were dead.

This charade lasted two years until he was finally caught while on holiday to Tenerife with three school friends.

His passport contained his original name, Brian MacKinnon, and his date of birth, revealing to them that he was in fact in his early 30s.

There were some cracks in his narrative before this though, as some of his classmates questioned why he had a car at the age of 16, but he explained that people in Canada could drive at that age.

Another pupil questioned his age and he answered it by explaining he suffered from premature ageing.

BBC Scotland broke the news with it making headlines worldwide soon after.

What did Brandon Lee say about his deception?

Brandon Lee, aka Brian MacKinnon, is 58 years-old now (Robert Perry 2022)

Following his exposure in 1995, he sat down with the BBC to explain his actions.

He said walking through the school gates on his first day back was “nerve-racking”.

He added: "I was aware of the fact that at any moment a question could arise that I couldn't answer, I might be asked for a birth certificate, but I wasn't.

"I simply kept my head down, looked shy and boyish and that's all I could do - and it presented no problems at all.”

Despite being a grade-A student, he knew he couldn’t excel too much to avoid standing out.

He said: "I did not want to win a number of prizes in the first term and end up in the local paper."

Where is Brandon Lee today?

My Old School is available on Netflix from July 22, with Alan Cumming playing Brandon Lee (Magnolia Pictures/Youtube)

Today, Brandon - or Brian - is 58 years-old and worked closely with the documentary filmmakers to tell his story.

According to the Daily Mail, he now lives a reclusive life, still near the town of Bearsden.

He goes to the supermarket and to his local library where he enjoys reading up on conspiracy theories on the internet.

However, he mainly keeps to himself, with little known about the details of his life.

The film was directed by Jono McLeod, one of his former classmates.

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