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Tearful Paul Mescal praises co-star Daisy Edgar-Jones as 'Normal People' crashes Emmys

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Daisy Edgar-Jones and Paul Mescal

Daisy Edgar-Jones and Paul Mescal

Daisy Edgar-Jones and Paul Mescal

'Normal People' star Paul Mescal has been nominated for a prestigious Emmy Award for his critically acclaimed performance in the smash-hit drama.

The Kildare actor is in good company in the category for lead actor in a limited series or movie.

He is up against Jeremy Irons for 'Watchmen', Hugh Jackman for 'Bad Education', Mark Ruffalo for 'I Know This Much is True', and Jeremy Pope for 'Hollywood'.

There was also good news for fellow Irish actors Andrew Scott, who was recognised for his performance in 'Black Mirror' in the Best Guest Actor category, and Fiona Shaw, who was nominated for Outstanding Support Actress for her role in 'Killing Eve'.

Mescal (24) received rave reviews for his performance as shy but popular Connell in coming-of-age drama 'Normal People'.

As his Emmy nomination was announced, the actor tweeted a still from the drama showing him crying saying: "My actual face right now!"

He thanked the show's producers and director Lenny Abrahamson and made special mention of his co-star, Daisy Edgar-Jones, saying: "This only exists because of you and your extraordinary talent it's as simple as that."

The drama, which was shot in Ireland, earned universal praise and made household names of Mescal and Edgar-Jones, who played troubled Marianne.

Mescal's second TV project - crime drama 'The Deceived', which he began shooting just two days after 'Normal People' - is due out next month on ­Virgin Media One.

'Normal People' received four Emmy nominations overall, with Abrahamson getting a nod in the category of Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, author Sally Rooney and Alice Birch were nominated for Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, while Louise Kiely was nominated for Outstanding Casting for a Limited Series.

Tweeting his congratulations to his fellow nominees last night, Abrahamson also had special praise for Edgar-Jones.

"Huge love too to the brilliant Daisy Edgar-Jones who is woven into the DNA of this show in a way impossible to separate. The nominations are hers too," he said.

Andrew Lowe and Ed Guiney, executive producers of 'Normal People' and co-founders of Element Pictures, said: "The response to the show internationally has exceeded our wildest dreams and this is an incredible honour for the show and for everyone who worked on it."

Culture Minister Catherine Martin congratulated the cast and crew of the series.

"TV drama is hugely important to the Irish audiovisual sector and a key focus of the Audiovisual Action Plan. Screen Ireland committed significant funding and resources to TV drama production last year and 'Normal People' was the first large-scale indigenous project that Screen Ireland supported with this fund," she said.

Screen Ireland's chairperson Dr Annie Doona said: "The critical success of the show reminds us of the intrinsic value of Irish storytelling on-screen.

"We are delighted to see Irish creative talent recognised and celebrated at the highest level on the international stage."

The Emmy Awards take place on September 20.

Irish Independent