HOLLYWOOD star Sam Neill admitted he was "thrilled" to return to the island of his birth.
Mr Neill (65) -- who has an Irish passport -- arrived in Cork to promote wines from his New Zealand vineyard, Two Paddocks.
"It's great to be here -- I love Ireland," he said.
The star of such blockbusters as 'The Hunt for Red October', 'Jurassic Park' and 'The Piano' is also expected to visit Dublin and Tyrone, where he was born.
He recalled that the last time he visited Cork he was presented with a hurley that had been specially made for him.
The star said his visit was also apt in that he was currently shooting a film with Irish actor Cillian Murphy.
While raised in New Zealand, the actor was born in Omagh where his New Zealand-born father was serving in the Irish Guards. He spent his first seven years in Ireland.
Mr Neill agreed to be guest speaker at a Network Cork event during his 24-hour stay on Leeside.
Network Cork president Rebecca Birchall said they were delighted.
"He is a very brave man venturing into a room full of 100 Cork business women," she said.
During his visit, the actor will promote the Rieslings and Pinot Noirs for which his vineyard is best known.