Sunday 17 December 2017

Stars defend IFTAs after Fricker attack

NIAMH HORAN

It may have gotten a thrashing from Irish Oscar-winning actress Brenda Fricker last week, but a stream of film stars have come out in defence of the Irish Film and Television Awards.

Hollywood star Michael Fassbender, Brendan Gleeson, Liam Cunningham and director Jim Sheridan have all come out in staunch defence of the annual awards ceremony.

It seemed there wasn't much for support for Ms Fricker when she decided to hit out at the event, calling it "mind blowingly boring" and a "mess".

Speaking about the association who had spotted him as a "rising star" before he hit the big time, star of Shame Michael Fassbender said: "Whether I've been nominated or not The IFTAS are something that I always try to make sure I can make it for."

Calling it "fun" and "a nice environment", he added "there's a very supportive feeling in the room".

Brendan Gleeson stressed the need to keep high standards in Irish talent on the big screen and he said: "This awards ceremony is one way of making that happen."

Ed Guiney, producer of Gleeson's latest box-office hit The Guard described his IFTA award as "the crowning glory" to the movie's spectacular success.

Sources say the organisers of the IFTAs, were "flooded" with calls of support following Ms Fricker's comments.

"The phone was hopping with calls and texts from big names in the industry saying they couldn't believe the comments that were made.

"They all had a fantastic night, but, more importantly, they know how important the association is to the Irish film and television industry."

Next year will be the 10th anniversary of the awards.

Sunday Independent

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