Monday 22 July 2019

'The way we work is very different' - Domhnall Gleeson opens up about father Brendan's career and its influence on him

Actor Domhnall Gleeson attends the European Premiere of 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' at Royal Albert Hall on December 12, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images)
Actor Domhnall Gleeson attends the European Premiere of 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' at Royal Albert Hall on December 12, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images)

Lynne Kelleher

Actor Domhnall Gleeson may be one of Hollywood's most prolific leading men, but he has revealed how he has only used his own Irish accent twice on the big screen.

His latest film The Little Stranger is a gothic ghost story centred around a post-war British upper-class family which inhabits what appears to be a haunted house in 1947.

The Dubliner is part of Ireland's greatest acting dynasty, but in an interview with GQ magazine, he revealed how his father Brendan's talent could have scared him away from following in his footsteps.

"I was interested in writing and directing," he said.

Brendan Gleeson and his sons, Brian and Domhnall. Picture: Colin Keegan
Brendan Gleeson and his sons, Brian and Domhnall. Picture: Colin Keegan

"That's what I went to college for, but I think I've become better at acting than I am at either of those two things.

"I'm interested in telling stories, essentially.

Charlotte Rampling, Domhnall Gleeson, and Ruth Wilson in 'The Little Stranger'
Charlotte Rampling, Domhnall Gleeson, and Ruth Wilson in 'The Little Stranger'

"My father is an incredible actor and in a way it made me realise it was possible.

"But in another way, it made me think, 'Well, I can't do it as well as he does it so what's the point?'

"My brother Brian is a phenomenal actor as well.

"So, there was already an actor in the family, even when I began."

Read more: Domhnall Gleeson: 'I'm not good with fame - it's just not how I was built'

The 35-year-old plays an English doctor in his latest movie, but he says he has only used his Irish accent a handful of times during his prolific career as one of Hollywood's hardest working leading men.

"I had a tiny bit in Calvary that I use my own accent in. I did this tiny comedy called Crash Pad a few years ago, but that's it," he said.

Gleeson plays Dr Faraday, a post-war doctor tasked with rehabilitating a veteran holed up in an English mansion in his new movie.

He spoke of his huge admiration for the work of his father who came to acting relatively late in his life.

"I'm very different to my dad in lots of ways," Domhnall said. "The way we work is very different.

"I wish I was more like him in lots of ways but I'm not.

"My dad has just been great in everything that he's done and I don't quite have that facility."

Read more: WATCH: Exclusive behind the scenes with Domhnall Gleeson and cast on Lenny Abrahamson's The Little Stranger

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