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Director John Michael McDonagh says Irish films are not 'technically accomplished' or 'intelligent'

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Calvary star Brendan Gleeson (left) with the film’s director, John Michael McDonagh

Calvary star Brendan Gleeson (left) with the film’s director, John Michael McDonagh

Dark role: Chris O'Dowd with Brendan Gleeson in 'Calvary'

Dark role: Chris O'Dowd with Brendan Gleeson in 'Calvary'

Dylan Moran with Brendan Gleeson in Calvary

Dylan Moran with Brendan Gleeson in Calvary

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Calvary star Brendan Gleeson (left) with the film’s director, John Michael McDonagh

John Michael McDonagh has said that he would prefer if his latest film, Calvary, was not called an Irish film because he doesn't find Irish films that 'intelligent'.

Speaking in a video interview for Associated Press, McDonagh, said, “I’m not a big fan of Irish movies, I don’t find them to be  technically that accomplished and I don’t find them that intelligent.

"So I’m trying to get away from the description of the movie as an Irish film in a way."

He added, "You see the problem is they [audiences] know that lots of Irish films aren’t very good and they’re actually hesitant about going to see the movie themselves.

“So when you’re making a film there, you’re trying to convince the Irish audience ‘No, it’s not like all those terrible Irish movies you’ve seen before.'”

Calvary, which stars a predominantly Irish cast including Brendan Gleeson, Chris O'Dowd, Aidan Gillen, and Dylan Moran, was set, and shot, in the west of Ireland.

The film was also partly funded by the Irish Film Board.

However, McDonagh, who was born and raised in London, insisted, "It’s not an Irish film. It’s just set in Ireland with lots of Irish characters.”

Calvary received rave reviews in Ireland where it bagged an impressive €1.6m at the Irish box office.  A strong opening weekend in the US last month - taking an average of $18,000 per screen - saw it expand its US run.

In April this year Calvary won Best Film, Best Actor (for Gleeson) and Best Script awards at the IFTAs.

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