Hollywood has arrived en masse on Co Mayo's Achill island as two international films are currently being shot there.
Ireland’s renowned A-list actors Brendan Gleeson and Colin Farrell are on the island filming the Oscar-winning writer and director Martin McDonagh’s latest film, named The Banshees of Inisherin.
Other well-known names involved in the film include Dunkirk star Barry Keoghan and Kerry Condon who starred in the 2019 film Dreamland.
The Banshees of Inisherin tells the story of a pair of lifelong friends on a remote Irish island, who find themselves at an awkward time in their relationship when one of them no longer wants to be friends.
A joint Irish and Finnish film production, My Sailor, My Love is also being shot at locations around the island which is directed by Finnish director Klaus Haro and starring Scottish actor James Cosmo.
Old sea captain
The film centres around an old sea captain who returns to his hometown in order to rest for the remainder of his days. He is in love with his high school sweetheart, but bitterness among his adult children is caused by this.
After spending so many years out at sea, they would like the father to be there for them. The children take their father to an old-age home to get him out of the house. The old couple can then only meet in secret.
Many islanders are being cast as extras on both films.
Chris McCarthy, Achill Tourism manager, said that the filming on the Co Mayo island was a massive “shot in the arm” for Achill as the majority of accommodation has been booked out.
We are delighted that they chose Achill as a location and they are living among us in our community
“The majority of the accommodation in Achill has been booked up for the next four to five weeks, which is another season for 2021 in the tourism business. It is absolutely fantastic for the accommodation providers on the island and a massive shot in the arm coming at the end of the two years of Covid,” said Mr McCarthy.
“We are delighted that they chose Achill as a location and they are living among us in our community. We hope they have a good time and everything goes well during the filming. There is great excitement here and its good to see a number of locals getting roles as extras. Hopefully there will be more movies to come in the future,” he said.
Filming on The Banshees of Inisherin is expected to continue until next month.