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Thursday 14 December 2017

Saoirse Ronan 'absolutely extraordinary' in Brooklyn lead role - author Colm Toibin

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Oscar-nominee Saoirse Ronan has been described as "absolutely extraordinary" in her new role in Brooklyn by the man who penned the book.

The acclaimed actress (20) has finished filming on the movie based on the novel of the same name by award-winning Irish author Colm Toibin.

Co-starring Domhnall Gleeson, it tells the story of a young woman named Eilis who moves from a rural town in Ireland to the bright lights of Brooklyn as she tries to follow her dreams.

Once in the US, Eilis is initially homesick, but soon settles down in the city and falls in love with an Italian plumber called Tony, who is played by Emory Cohen.

And having seen the first version of the movie, which saw Nick Hornby writing the screenplay, Toibin was left singing the praises of the Carlow native.

"It's very, very emotional. It's the first time I suppose she's doing a part as a lead actress as an adult on her own and she's absolutely extraordinary," he said.

"I thought, maybe this is for people who remember emigration but all the young people who came from the publishers and agency in London, they were all in tears of the choice she had to make.

"Was she going to stay in Ireland or was she going to go back to Brooklyn and the guy, the American actor Emory Cohen plays it as pure charm. He'll do anything to win her."

He also said there was wonderful chemistry between her and the 'Stars Wars' actor, who's quickly becoming the toast of Hollywood and plays Saoirse's love interest in the film.

"Domhnall Gleeson in Ireland plays it the other way around (to Cohen).

"He is just so sincere, so honest, so decent that he would mean pure stability and he sort of needs her and she can see that every word he says is true. So they're playing the opposite ways against each other and she has to decide which way to go," Toibin told Newstalk's Pat Kenny.

The cast also includes Jim Broadbent as the village priest and Julie Waters as Ronan's mum with the production shot in locations including Enniscorthy in Wexford and Dublin.

Set in 1950's Ireland, the shoot then moved on to Montreal in Canada with the movie scheduled for release in early 2015 with Toibin saying the only thing left to do is add the music score to the film.

Author Toibin will shortly publish his eight novel, which is entitled Nora Webster.

mfinn@herald.ie

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