Saturday 16 December 2017

Boorman to get top honour at IFTAs

John Boorman: directed classics including cult film 'Excalibur' Photo: Getty Images
John Boorman: directed classics including cult film 'Excalibur' Photo: Getty Images

HE HAS called Ireland his home for four decades but Wicklow-based director John Boorman will finally be honoured next month by the Irish film industry with a lifetime-achievement award.

The director of cult classic 'Deliverance' is a former chairman of the first Irish Film Board. In 1980, he shot the epic 'Excalibur' in Ireland, featuring the then-unknown acting talents of Liam Neeson, Gabriel Byrne and Ciaran Hinds.

Irish directors have reason to be grateful to him. Neil Jordan said: "John Boorman gave me my first real screenwriting job and produced my first feature film, Angel. He is a true artist of the cinema."

Actor Brendan Gleeson, who played the lead role in Boorman's film 'The General', a biopic of Irish crime lord Martin Cahill, will lead the tributes to the director at The Irish Film and Television Awards (IFTAs) in The Burlington Hotel, Dublin, on February 20.

He said: "John Boorman has been at the centre of film-making in Ireland and has graced us with his vision and humanity."

Announcing Boorman's award at the launch of IFTA's 2010 rollout of events, Dr Martin Mansergh said that the award would "celebrate John's impact and influence on the early years of our film industry".

Ken Sweeney

Irish Independent

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