In the early days of Colin Farrell’s career, someone must have advised the young actor to make action blockbusters, and the result was films like Miami Vice and Alexander. Meanwhile, Farrell has revealed the true extent of his talent to a much smaller audience with grittier roles like the ones he played in In Bruges and Crazy Heart. And if there was ever any doubt that he was meant to make nuanced dramas rather than bajillion-dollar spectacles, it was put to rest at last night’s Tribeca Film Festival premiere of Ondine, in which he plays a recovering alcoholic fisherman from a small Irish village.
On stage after the screening, Farrell stood alongside director Neil Jordan and his costar, newcomer Alicja Bachleda (with whom Farrell had a child last October), and told the audience that he had hired a dialect coach for the role. Growing up watching shows like CHiPs and T.J. Hooker, he said, gave him a better grasp of American accents than the regional Irish one that Ondine called for. “I had this nationalist sense of pride and fear that I’d be an Irishman doing a bad Irish accent!” he admitted.
Another Ondine revelation: Alison Barry, the 11-year-old who plays Farrell’s daughter in the film. It was her first acting job and she is spectacular. Sadly for us (though perhaps sanity-preserving for her), she has no immediate plans to continue acting. “The biggest challenge was to not be upstaged,” Farrell replied when asked by an audience member last night about the challenges of working with such a young co-star. “I failed miserably.”
Click here for more pics from last night’s red carpet.
Photo Credit: Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival. Ondine: © Magnolia Pictures.