Category Archives: Belfast
It’s not very often you get to work on a TV series you love but this week I did as I started work on Ripper Street.
Ripper Street is a BBC TV series set in Whitechapel in London’s East End in 1889, six months after the infamous Jack the Ripper murders. The series stars Matthew Macfadyen, Jerome Flynn and Adam Rothenberg.
Keep an eye out for me in Season 2 in 2014!
I got the opportunity to work on BBC4’s biopic drama Wodehouse in Exile.
Featuring an all-star cast including Tim Piggot-Smith as PG Wodehouse and Zoe Wanamaker, it tells the story of how the author PG Wodehouse came to face a charge of treason during the Second World War and how this quintessential Englishman, creator of Jeeves and Wooster, became an exile from his own country, never setting foot on English soil again.
The production was aired on BBC4 and was filmed entirely at various locations in Belfast and around the North.
To Lose Control will have launch screenings for cast, crew, friends and family. The amount of help and support that people and companies have given this project has been overwhelming and I would just like to say a big thank you for all of it!
As you’ve probably heard before the seeds were sown on this project around this time 2 years ago and 6 months ago, after a long week, we finished principal photography.
This for me is definitely one I’m very proud to be involved with: to collaborate with someone on such a personal project was an honour and I hope I’ve done the material justice.
Here’s a ‘Behind the Scenes’ video for a bit of an insight into the production:
The screenings will take place on Friday at 5.30pm sharp at Queen’s Film Theatre Belfast and at the Moviehouse Dublin Road at 10.30am. If you would like to attend any of these they are both FREE, just email email@example.com and RSVP.
Hope to see you all there!
Here’s the synopsis and trailer of the movie…
After nearly ten years of military service including operations in several war zones, a former elite soldier Chris Draper struggles to deal with P.T.S.D. after leaving the armed forces. He decides to find a cure and explores a once controversial treatment of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing before he loses control completely.
We started on Monday and the biggest task was to make a quarry outside Newcastle Co. Down look like a military compound in Afghanistan. We were very lucky to have Jim Sherrard as part of the team, as he did an awesome job recreating “JTAC Hill” (or Hamburger Hill as I liked to call it).
When the cameras rolled pyrotechnics just kept coming and with two large speakers blasting out war effects we definitely got a feel and taste of war.
After Monday’s actual explosions the rest of the week was full of emotional ones, and they were probably the hardest to shoot. On various locations, and with a great supporting cast and crew, we made it to the therapy with Maggie Cronin, one of the stars from Terry George’s Oscar-winning film The Shore.
This has definitely been one the best experiences of my career and it should be a rollercoaster of a ride for the audience when it’s released. I just wanted to finish off by saying a big thank you to everyone involved – we couldn’t have done it without you!
Anyone following me on Twitter may have read some bizarre tweets towards the end of March – ‘Another day chasing aliens in Carrickfergus’, for instance. No, I hadn’t gone mad, but in fact was filming a BBC sci-fi sitcom pilot called V SIGN.
V SIGN follows a group of human survivors fighting off the universe’s most incompetent alien invasion force. I’m playing the role of Neil, one of the hapless group fending off the aliens.
The pilot was filmed in Northern Ireland by production companies Retort and Green Inc. It was written by Steve Turner (Tracy Beaker) and directed by Ed Tracy (Fonejacker, Facejacker).
The old saying goes “If you look after the pennies, the pounds will look after themselves“… you could apply this to the short film I worked on last year, 2p, as it has been selected by the The Arizona Film Festival this year.
From its small budget and a lot of heart from the cast and crew, 2p is certainly reaping its rewards.
Well done to everyone involved and a big thanks to producer Larry Cowan (Lamb Films) and Director Will Maloney for letting me play the role of Billy!
Keep an eye for 2p coming to festival near you soon!
Next week sees the airing of SOS: The Titanic Inquiry. It will be broadcast on BBC 1 on 16 April at 9.00pm and on RTE 2 on 17 April at 7.00pm.
Produced by Hole In The Wall Gang Ltd for BBC Northern Ireland, this courtroom drama tells the story of the official British inquiry into the sinking of the Titanic and its efforts to ascertain whether the SS Californian ship was in close enough proximity to the doomed vessel to help save some of the 1,517 passengers and crew who lost their lives.
It was shot over five days in the Masonic Hall Belfast and features the talents of Paul McGann (Withnail and I) as well as local actors Stuart Graham (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) and Owen McDonnell (Single Handed).
I will be playing the role of Ernest Gill, an assistant engineer on the SS Californian.
A small newspaper in New England, the Daily Item, printed a shocking story claiming that the Californian had refused aid to Titanic. The source for the story was the ship’s carpenter, James McGregor, who stated that his ship had been close enough to see Titanic’s lights and distress rockets. By sheer coincidence, on the same day, the Boston American printed a story sourced by the Californian’s assistant engineer, Ernest Gill, which essentially told the same story.
It’s something different for this Titanic season as it looks at what happened to the stricken vessel from the vantage point of the courtroom. Keep an eye out for it…
It’s probably my most ambitious role to date, as I take on the character of Royal Marine Chris Draper, an Afghanistan and Iraq war veteran who is trying to cope with P.T.S.D (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).
The film explores the once controversial therapy EMDR, (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) used for dealing with P.T.S.D, and how family and close friends all become affected by it.
Plans are to have cameras rolling this summer with some locations around Northern Ireland doubling for Afghanistan. Here’s a teaser trailer of what you can expect –
New showreel for 2012! It includes some of what I was up to last year thanks to Marty Stalker at Scattered Images.
There is some exclusive footage from movies that will be out later in the year, including Desecration and Coast.
The indie film scene is buzzing here with The Shore winning an Oscar in the live action short category over the weekend, and now The C-Project has released the trailer for its third project Desecration.
Here’s a little about the movie…
‘On a dark remote road a car is stopped by at a military check point. Something isn’t right and the soldiers find themselves in a situation they could never understand with deadly consequences.’
I had an amazing experience on this film working with such a great crew and their attention to detail. This is definitely one to keep an eye out for at the festivals this year. For more updates please ‘Like’ the Desecration Facebook Page.