Style stakes raised amid star-studded line-up for Derby
FILMMAKER Jim Sheridan took to the races over the weekend but it's straight back to work today for his latest project.
The Irish Independent can reveal that he is to replace Thaddeus O'Sullivan as director on the film adaptation of Sebastian Barry's novel 2008 'The Secret Scripture'.
O'Sullivan, whose work includes 'Ordinary Decent Criminal' and recent RTE drama 'Amber' is no longer attached to the project.
The film will star Jessica Chastain and Oscar winner Vanessa Redgrave – who worked with Sebastian Barry's mother Joan O'Hara on her last film 'How About You'.
The script was penned by late screenwriter Johnny Ferguson with Sheridan working on subsequent drafts.
"Johnny did the first draft, I did some of the rewrites and I'll be behind the lens directing," Sheridan told the Irish Independent while at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby in the Curragh.
"It's an extremely exciting project and the cast is sensational. I'm looking forward to it," he said.
"We're getting everything lined up before we start shooting."
Sheridan was just one of several high-profile guest who mingled with over 40,000 punters at the races over the weekend.
As predicted, the main event was won by Aidan O'Brien's Australia, with delighted owner John Magnier saying: "It was a wonderful race and he's a great horse with great speed."
Thistlebird owned by Lady Rothchild won the Newbridge Silverware Pretty Polly Stakes yesterday.
Some 23,946 were in attendance on Saturday alone. Former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern enjoyed the action with son-in-law David Keoghan, whose horse Accepted came first in the Full Of Surprises EBF Maiden with 13/2 odds.
"You don't get a better start then that," Ahern said.
Broadcaster Gay Byrne, Anne Doyle, 'Mrs Brown's Boys' actor Rory Cowan, retired champion jockey Lester Piggott and boxer Bernard Dunne were also in attendance.
Golfer Rory McIlroy was spotted soaking up the atmosphere in the stands while 'Made in Chelsea' star Millie Mackintosh was on hand to pick out the Best Dressed Lady.
"I've been blown away by the style today," Mackintosh said. "The Irish ladies have really brought their A game."
Catriona Hanley, a nurse from Raheen in Co Limerick, took home the top prize which included flights to Dubai and a shopping spree in Brown Thomas.
"I can't believe it. I just wanted to go for something timeless," she said.