Tuesday 17 September 2019

For Irish Golden Globe hopes, meet 'The Favourite'

Ruling: Olivia Colman in ‘The Favourite’, which will be released in Ireland in January
Ruling: Olivia Colman in ‘The Favourite’, which will be released in Ireland in January
Aoife Kelly

Aoife Kelly

A film on an English queen and a court of intrigue has the Irish film world celebrating.

The Irish producers of 'The Favourite' - starring 'Broadchurch' actress Olivia Colman, and Oscar-winning actors Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone - are celebrating the news their film has been nominated for five Golden Globes.

It equals 'A Star is Born' and 'Green Book' in terms of the number of nominations, beaten only by 'Vice', Adam McKay's film starring Christian Bale, which has six nominations.

'The Favourite' is the latest from writer/director Yorgos Lanthimos, and marks his third collaboration with Element Pictures following award-winning films 'The Lobster' and 'The Killing of a Sacred Deer'.

Colman has been nominated for Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy, while both Weisz and Stone are competing for Best Supporting Actress.

Tony McNamara is up for Best Screenplay and 'The Favourite' is also in the running for the big prize, Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy.

Dublin-based Element Films co-produced with Scarlet Films. Executive producer Andrew Lowe, who is co-founder of Element along with Ed Guiney, revealed that they were "crossing our fingers" ahead of the announcement. The film had already been well received, premiering at the Lido in Venice where it won the Grand Jury Prize and Olivia Colman won Best Actress.

"We were sort of pinching ourselves, to be honest," Lowe told the Irish Independent.

"If we had got four or five, we would have been very pleased. We were ambitious for this film and it took a long time to put together and one of the key decisions for us was partnering with Fox Searchlight, who are the pre-eminent global distributor for 'specialty' films, with that term as it applies in Hollywood.

"Fox Searchlight has been doing this for a long time and it has won more Oscars than anybody else.

"Certainly last year, they dominated the Academy Awards," said Lowe.

The Globes are often an indicator of how a film will fare at the Academy Awards, and 'The Favourite' is certainly well-placed ahead of the Oscars campaign, thanks to Fox.

"It helps on a number of levels," said Lowe. "First and foremost, and most importantly in a way, is the film is now on general release in the US.

"It has really helped in terms of targeting attention and bringing an audience to the film."

The film, which was shot by Irish cinematographer Robbie Ryan and was partly post- produced in Dublin, has been garnering rave reviews from US critics and is performing extremely well at the US box office.

'The Favourite' will be released in Ireland next month through Fox Searchlight.

Irish eyes will also be keeping an eye on acclaimed Irish actor Caitriona Balfe, who has been nominated for Best Actress in a Television Drama Series.

This is Balfe's fourth Golden Globe nomination in a row for her part in acclaimed TV series 'Outlander'.

Irish Independent

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