Tuesday 21 May 2019

Barry's rise from personal tragedy earns heartfelt tribute from Farrell

Barry Keoghan with the Wilde Card rising star award, presented
to him by Colin Farrell. Photo: Getty
Barry Keoghan with the Wilde Card rising star award, presented to him by Colin Farrell. Photo: Getty
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

Colin Farrell praised actor Barry Keoghan for overcoming 'insurmountable' personal tragedy to become one of Ireland's fastest rising stars.

Farrell presented Keoghan with the Wilde Card rising star award at the annual Oscar Wilde party in Santa Monica, California.

The pair worked together on Yorgos Lanthimos's 'The Killing of a Sacred Deer', and Farrell said it was an honour to share the screen with the 25-year-old.

"It's really incredible what he has achieved in a few years. Anyone who knows Barry can testify to the fact that he has gone through a certain amount of experience in his own personal life," he said.

"He has experienced a certain amount of absolute desolation in his personal life in his past, things that I would find, in my contemplation of such loss, completely insurmountable.

"So for him to put every bit of hope and pain and curiosity into his work but also be a man of great generosity and warmth fun, little bit of madness - just the right measure - is the most impressive thing."

Keoghan's mother died from a heroin overdose when he was small, and his maternal grandmother raised him after her death.

Farrell said Keoghan's role in 'Dunkirk' was pivotal and "for me at least the true heart and soul of the film... in a film of epic scope he was the one who brought home the personal loss inevitable in conflict".

Keoghan, from Summerhill in Dublin's north inner city, almost missed the awards after his flight out of Dublin was first cancelled, then delayed by 24 hours.

"The whole of Ireland is shut down," Farrell said. "There is a shortage of bread, s*** has hit the fan."

Keoghan was feeling the jetlag kick in when he took to the stage, thanking the Oscar Wilde team he added that he was "absolutely wrecked, lads".

Other honorees on the night included 'Star Wars' actor Mark Hamill, 'Best in Show' and 'Home Alone' star Catherine O'Hara and 'Hunger Games' actress Paula Malcomson.

Hamill spoke about his paternal Irish heritage and his time shooting on Skellig Michael.

"I have learnt everything I know about Ireland through movies and what a rich heritage it is, from the exuberance and joy of 'The Commitments' to harrowing tragedy of 'Angela's Ashes'," he said.

Now in its 13th year, the Oscar Wilde awards honour filmmakers with a connection to Ireland and Irish film.

Other guests included Martin Short, Kathy Griffin, Diane Keaton, Jason O'Mara, Sarah Bolger, Andy Serkis, comedian Aisling Bea, Victoria Smurfit, Nora-Jane Noone, and designer Don O'Neill.

Irish Independent

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