Irish Eye on Hollywood:
Awards Season Highlights Irish Talent

Brie Larson.
Brie Larson.

By Tom Deignan, Contributor
February / March 2016

It’s that time of year again in Hollywood. Everyone from critics’ associations to film review boards are giving out awards, all leading up to the Oscars, which will be held this year on February 28 in Hollywood.

The Irish are doing quite well thus far, racking up a wide range of awards and nominations, which suggests they will be well-represented by the time the Academy Awards roll around.

Saoirse Ronan (right) has already picked up numerous awards and nominations for her turn as Irish immigrant Eilis Lacey in Brooklyn, directed by Irishman John Crowley. The New York Film Critics Circle, for example, gave Ronan their Best Actress award back in December. They also named the Belfast thriller ’71 a “top independent film” for the year. Ronan also received a Golden Globe Best Actress nomination alongside Irish American Rooney Mara (for the ’50s love story Carol). Though it was Brie Larson who won the Best Actress Golden Globe for Room, directed by Irishman Lenny Abrahamson, based on the book by Irish author Emma Donoghue.

Indeed, the Golden Globe nominations have a particularly strong Irish flavor this year. Room and Spotlight (about the sex scandal that rocked Boston’s heavily Irish Catholic church) were nominated for Best Drama while Kerry-reared Michael Fassbender (for Steve Jobs) was nominated for Best Actor. But it was Leonardo DiCaprio, playing brutalized Irish American pioneer Hugh Glass in The Revenant, who won the award, as did The Revenant, which ultimately took away the Best Drama Globe.

Irish American Melissa McCarthy was up for a Best Actress in a Comedy Golden Globe, while Tom McCarthy (no relation) was up for Best Director. McCarthy (Tom, that is) as well as Emma Donoghue were up for Best Screenplay and Maura Tierney won Best Supporting Acress in a TV series for her work in the searing cable drama The Affair. Finally, Dublin native Caitriona Balfe – who will next be appearing alongside George Clooney and Julia Roberts in the film Money Monster – earned a Best Actress in a TV Drama Golden Globe nod for Outlander.

The L.A. Film Critics Association also recognized Spotlight as Best Picture, McCarthy’s script as Best Screenplay, and Fassbender as Best Actor.

The National Board of Review tabbed Brie Larson as Best Actress for Room, which the Board also named as one of their nine top films for the year.

All of which means things are shaping up nicely for the Irish when the Academy Awards roll around in February.

 

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