A Salute To Irish Actors On St. Patrick's Day
When you think "Irish actor," Colin Farrell immediately comes to mind. A reformed bad boy who reportedly dated Britney Spears and made an infamous sex tape with former girlfriend and Playboy model Nicole Narain, Farrell has altered his priorities in the past few years.
Farrell recently showed his tender side when he opened up about his 4-year-old son's genetic disorder, Angelman Syndrome, which affects his motor skills. Farrell said on Irish TV show "Tubridy Tonight," "He's nothing but a gift. As far as I'm concerned, he's exactly the way he should be... He has his own path. He's just brilliant."
Jonathan Rhys-Meyers is really beginning to make his mark on American audiences. He appeared in 2004's "Vanity Fair" and "Alexander," as well as "Match Point" (2005) and "Mission: Impossible III" (2006). He's also the star of the popular Showtime series "The Tudors." He's been to rehab and was arrested at Dublin airport in November 2007 for public drunkenness, unfortunately supporting the Irish stereotype about alcohol.
Cillian Murphy is the type of actor filmgoers may have seen before but cannot place. He appeared in "28 Days Later" (2002), "Girl With A Pearl Earring" (2003), and "Intermission" (2003). But many may know him best for playing the creepy Scarecrow in "Batman Begins" (2005). Born in Douglas, Cork, Ireland, Murphy is definitely Irish born and bred.
Cillian Murphy's "Batman Begins" co-star Liam Neeson is also of the Irish persuasion. He starred in the Scottish epic "Rob Roy" (1995) and the Irish drama "Michael Collins" (1996), but his most famous roles are probably as Oskar Schindler in "Schindler's List" (1993) and as Qui-Gon Jinn in "Star Wars The Phantom Menace" (1999). He'll tackle the role of the sixteenth president of the United States in 2009's "Lincoln."
If Gabriel Byrne became a priest like he aspired to as a young boy, we never would have seen him in films such as "Millers Crossing" (1990) or "The Usual Suspects" (1995). He currently stars in the HBO psychiatric drama series "In Treatment."
Other Irish actors:
-Pierce Brosnan, Irish born but British raised
-Peter O'Toole, Irish born but British raised
-Aidan Quinn, born in Chicago and raised in both the U.S. and Ireland by Irish immigrants
-"Roseanne" & "Angel" star Glenn Quinn, who died in 2002 of a drug overdose
-"Rome" and "Munich" star Ciaran Hinds
-Charlize Theron's actor boyfriend Stuart Townsend
-Shakespearean actor Kenneth Branagh
-Newcomer Saoirse Ronan, known for playing the young Briony Tallis in "Atonement"
Story by Noelle Talmon
Starpulse.com contributing writer
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