A YOUNG Cork man is set to become a television star after making his dream of working with renowned director Lenny Abrahamson a reality.
At just 22, Eanna Hardwicke has got his big break with a role in the TV adaptation of author Sally Rooney’s Normal People.
The coming-of-age book has been adapted as a 12-part series for the BBC and will be directed by the Oscar-nominated filmmaker, Abrahamson.
The story follows the complicated relationship between Marianne and Connell from the end of secondary school in Co Sligo to early adulthood.
Eanna will be in good company as fellow Cork actor Sarah Greene, who just so happens to be a family friend, has also been cast for the show.
The Lir Academy of Performing Arts graduate also grew up with Chris Walley of the Young Offenders Fame.
Eanna, who will play Connell’s best friend in the production, described his excitement around working with Lenny Abrahamson.
“He was so kind and full of stories,” he said.
“Lenny Abrahamson has been the main influence on me for a long time and I had always wanted to work with him. Working with him was a great experience. He gives you so much faith in yourself and your instincts as an actor.”
Eanna was also excited about the prospect of bringing Sally Rooney’s work to life.
“The book captures my generation in incredible detail. It defines a time in a lot of Irish people’s lives. Sally Rooney has done something amazing in getting the voices and experiences of people during that time to a tee. It meant a lot to all the actors working on the show who saw so much of their own lives reflected in the book.”
Eanna discovered he had secured the role while making a self tape at a friends.
“I got an email first because they couldn’t get through to my phone,” he said.
“When I got the email saying that I had the part I couldn’t believe it.
“ I still didn’t believe it until I heard that voice at the end of the phone. This was an incredible project that it became more than just about getting a part.”
Being an actor meant that Eanna faced a lot of rejection.
“You get used to hearing no, but this time around the stakes were so high.”