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Paul Hickey

Paul Hickey

Paul Hickey

Paul was born and grew up in Dublin. He studied and worked in Belfast and now lives in West London. You might recognise him from Dr Who, the multi BAFTA winning Three Girls or as Johno in the award winning Irish cop show Red Rock, now on the BBC.

Paul has worked extensively in British and Irish Theatre, including at the RSC and many appearances at both the Royal Court and the National Theatres. Film and TV includes, Fr Ted, Whitechapel, Dr Who, Red Rock, Inspector Lynley, Three Girls, Saving Private Ryan

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Siobhan Finneran

Siobhan Finneran
Siobhan Finneran

Siobhan Finneran (Wikipedia)

Siobhan Finneran was born in 1966 and is an English actress. She made her screen debut in the 1987 independent film Rita, Sue and Bob Too, and subsequently worked consistently in television drama including roles in Coronation Street, (1989–1990) Clocking Off (2000–02) and The Amazing Mrs Pritchard (2006). In 2005, Finneran originated the lead female role in the stage play On the Shore of the Wide World and was awarded the Manchester Evening News Theatre Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role. Also a comedy performer, Finneran appeared as a leading character in the first seven series of popular ITV sitcom Benidorm (2007–15).

Later television roles include portraying a lawyer in the mini-series Unforgiven (2009), an embittered servant in the first three series of the costume drama Downton Abbey (2010–12) and a recovering addict in Happy Valley (2014–present), for which she was nominated for the 2017 British Academy Television Award for Best Supporting Actress. Later film credits include Mrs Swift in the 2013 film release, The Selfish Giant, which earned her a British Independent Film Award nomination.

Finneran was born in Oldham, Lancashire on 27 April 1966 to Irish immigrant parents. As a child Finneran was always drawn to the performing arts and was a fan of the celebrated English comedian Eric Morecambe, recalling that “as a little girl I wanted to be Eric Morecambe. Not to be like him but to actually be him”.  After studying a theatre studies course, she was in cast in her first major role as Rita in the 1987 film Rita, Sue and Bob Too. Kate Muir, chief film critic at UK newspaper The Times described the characters of Rita and Sue —two teenagers who both have a sexual affair with the older, married Bob (George Costigan)— “as raunchy, cheeky, unstoppable schoolgirls played with relish by Siobhan Finneran and Michelle Holmes.  Between August 1989 and March 1990 Finneran appeared as factory employee Josie Phillips, in the long running ITV1 soap opera Coronation Street.  The character of Josie is best remembered for her on-off employment, and difficult relationship, with her boss, Mike Baldwin.

Finneran continued to appear regularly on UK television, making guest appearances in numerous drama series including Heartbeat(1993, 1994, 2003), Peak Practice (1995),  Out of the Blue (1996), Where The Heart Is (1997), Hetty Wainthrop Investigates (1998) and The Cops (1999). Finneran also established herself in comedic roles including episodes of Josie (a 1991 comedy series starring Josie Lawrence), Cannon and Balls Playhouse (1991)[17] and as a regularly appearing cast member in ITV1‘s production of The Russ Abbot Show (1995–96).  Whilst having performed frequently in comedy, Finneran credits her performance as “a very damaged mother” in Out of the Blue in 1996 in triggering a shift towards more dramatic roles. From the late 1990s Finneran began to consciously cut back her acting work to raise her two children as her husband, the actor Mark Jordon, (whom she married in August 1997) was regularly away from home filming as a series regular in Heartbeat.

Between 2000 and 2002 Finneran appeared as Julie O’Neill in three series of the BBC1 drama series Clocking Off.  Subsequent roles in the early 21st century include the ITV1 Russell T Davies drama series Bob & Rose (2001), Sparkhouse (2002) –a modern re-telling of Wuthering Heights scripted by Sally Wainwright– and the two-part thriller Passer By (2004) starring James Nesbitt. In 2005 Finneran appeared as the female lead, Alice Holmes, in the original stage production of On the Shore of the Wide World at the Royal Exchange, Manchester. Finneran’s performance earned her the Manchester Evening News Theatre Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role. In 2006 Finneran was cast as a series regular in The Amazing Mrs Pritchard (2006). Her character, Beverley Clarke is an established partner in a law firm who is inspired to launch a career in politics by her experience of the titular Ros Pritchard, and ultimately becomes an MP.

In 2007 Finneran appeared as Kelly in the British Independent film Boy A. Also In 2007 Finneran appeared as part of the original regular cast in the British sitcom Benidorm which details the experiences of holidaymakers and employees at the fictional Solana hotel in Benidorm, Spain. Finneran described her character Janice Garvey as “feisty, foul-mouthed and quite fantastic”. Over the course of the series, Janice struggles to keep her family unit—comprising Janice’s mother Madge (Sheila Reid), her husband Mick (Steve Pemberton) and their own children and grandchild—under control. A television correspondent at the Sunday Mirror described the character as a “fiercely protective lioness, humorous, straight-talking, and saucy” inclined to “let-it-all-hang-out” with a wardrobe comprising “skimpy, mutton-dressed-as-lamb outfits”.  Finneran found elements of the shoot embarrassing — including the requirement to be filmed in swimwear— and one scene which involved her character “snogging” a young barman played by an actor in his early twenties.  In spite of the outlandish elements of the sitcom, Finneran notes that the cast “tried to find the truth in each character, to make them a real person – not a stereotype.” In 2008, Finneran explained that as the series was filmed on location in Benidorm, her parents stepped in to help with childcare back home, with the children visiting during half-term.

Finneran would ultimately remain with the series, through to its 7th series, which aired in 2015. Discussing the enduring appeal of the series in 2013, Finneran stated that the series’ fan base had become firmly established by the fourth series and that viewers were attracted to the “banter” and recognisable family dynamics that take viewers “to the extremes”.  She also felt that the contrasting summer setting and typical winter air date also provided a form of escapism for the UK audience. After discussing their intent to leave Benidorm during filming of the sixth series (2014), Pemberton and Finneran announced their join departures ahead of the 7th series (2015). Both actors wanted to spend less time filming abroad, and neither wanted to leave on their own. Finneran found filming her last scenes “heartbreaking” noting she was in “a terrible state” upon bidding farewell to co-stars and crew with whom she had forged a close relationship.

Alongside her role in Benidorm, Finneran continued to star in original drama series’. In 2008 she portrayed Sister Ruth, a Vatican nun drawn to investigate a priest who performs exorcisms, in five episodes of the supernatural thriller Apparitions.  In 2009 Finneran appeared as a main cast member in the three part ITV1 thriller Unforgiven as Izzie Ingram, a family lawyer who aids convicted murder Ruth Slater (Suranne Jones) track down her long lost sister. George Costigan, who appears in Unforgiven and first worked with Finneran in 1987 cited the mini-series as an illustration of Finneran’s versatility, and justification of his appraisal of her as an acting “hero” and personal inspiration, stating that “she has no background in it and she just goes there. It’s extraordinary. Those are the actors that electrify you.”[31] Also in 2009, Finneran appeared in episodes of The Street, and Blue Murder,  and the straight-to-DVD soap opera spin-off Coronation Street: Romanian Holiday. ‘She’s worked since she was probably 14 or 15 years old, and has basically sacrificed her entire life to somebody else, for the good of their life and their home — it’s no wonder that she would get frustrated or angry about things.” “

In 2010 it was announced that Finneran had been cast in Downton Abbey, a period drama depicting the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their domestic servants. Upon its transmission, Downton Abbey received extensive critical acclaim, and strong viewing figures in both the UK and America.  Finneran’s character, lady’s maid Sarah O’Brien serves as an archetypal villain in the series’ narrative, whose schemes affect both her employers and her colleagues. The role was Finneran’s first in a costume drama. To become O’Brien, Finneran was required to wear “frumpy black” servants attire, a wig— which Finneran described as having “poodle curls” and “one bit [that is] proper bouffant” and spend around an hour in make-up each day to look less attractive.  Though screenwriter Julian Fellowes did not give her a backstory to work with, Finneran imagined that O’Brien was both traumatised by past experiences and, had accumulated anger, frustration and resentment issues from having worked in service all her life. In 2012 Finneran stated that she enjoyed the response to the character noting that viewers “love that she’s a nasty piece of work” and “love to dislike her”.

During her time on the show, the Downton Abbey cast won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series in 2012 (for series 2), and were nominated also in 2013 (for series 3).  Finneran announced her departure in March 2013, ahead of the fourth series, explaining that she had been signed for only three series and did not wish to extend her contract, adding: “When I stop loving something, I stop doing it.” BbLater that year, when asked by the Radio Times how her character’s abrupt exit would be handled, Finneran retorted: “I’m hoping she’s flung off the roof of the Abbey”.

In 2013 Finneran starred in the second series of The Syndicate on BBC1, portraying Mandy, a hospital worker and domestic abuse victim who wins the national lottery with her colleagues. Finneran was attracted to the role because of the suspense of her character’s storyline, and the challenge of keeping the abuse scenes as true-to-life as possible.  Also in 2013, Finneran portrayed Mrs Swift in The Selfish Giant an independent film inspired by both Oscar Wilde‘s short story of the same name and screenwriter and director Clio Barnard‘s personal experiences of the socially fragmented northern English underclass.  Finneran’s character is a troubled yet loving mother, who she describes as “not quite the full shilling”.  In spite of the tough subject matter of the film Finneran enjoyed the filming process noting that she felt “safe and secure” in the hands of Barnard, who she felt to be a calmer director than any other she had worked with.  For her portrayal, Finneran was nominated for the 2013 British Independent Film Award for Best Supporting Actress. In 2014, Finneran appeared in the French-Language film Un Illustre Inconnu (Nobody from Nowhere). In her private life, 2014 saw Finneran obtain a divorce her husband, Mark Jordan.[2]

Also in 2014, Finneran portrayed recovering heroin addict Clare in BBC One‘s Happy Valley—a crime drama that centres on the personal and occupational struggles faced by Clare’s cohabitant sister, sergeant Catherine Cawood (Sarah Lancashire)—to general acclaim. Whilst eulogising the series’ feminist credentials Gerald O’Donovan of The Daily Telegraph praised Finneran’s “quietly compelling performance” and the character’s “gritty wisdom” and stated viewers were unlikely to witness “a more believably crafted female character” that year. A second series aired in 2016, which gave more focus to Clare’s backstory, interpersonal relationships and struggles with alcoholism. Reviewing an episode of the second series, Jack Seale of The Guardian described Finneran as “brilliant” in her depiction of both Clare’s “jittery vulnerability” and portrayal of “a snarling addict who has relapsed”. In spite of the series’ subject matter, Finneran claimed that as an inept cook, she found having to peel carrots and act simultaneously the hardest part of filming. She blamed being given a faulty vegetable peeler by the props team in having to “hack” at the vegetables and opined that the end result of filming “looks like I’m digging a hole in the road.

By the time of Happy Valley‘s second series, Finneran had known Lancashire for over 30 years. Both their on-screen partnership and the depiction of middle-aged women in general in Happy Valley have been lauded as two of the series’ most distinctive elements by television journalists and critics. Reflecting on the series’ popularity, Finneran stated she felt viewers had taken the show to their hearts because the cast “reflected them” and “looked like real human beings with authentic emotions and flaws”. Radio Timesreviewer Alison Graham stated in 2016 that Finneran and Lancashire “should share every acting award going”. Happy Valley won the British Academy Television Award for Best Drama Series in Both 2015 and 2017.  Finneran was nominated in the Best Supporting Actress category in 2017.  Though correctly predicting that she would not win the award, Ben Lawrence of The Daily Telegraphidentified her as who he felt to be the deserving winner praising the “subtle, unfurling power” of her depiction. A third and final series of Happy Valley is expected to enter production, though not before Autumn 2018.

Between December 2014 and February 2015, Finneran appeared in the stage drama 3 Winters at the Royal National Theatre in London. In Autumn 2015 Finneran played a supporting role in the three part supernatural drama serial Midwinter of the Spirit.

In 2017, she portrayed real-life Detective Constable Christine Freeman in two-part drama The Moorside, a depiction of the 2008 disappearance of Shannon Matthews told from the perspective of the local community. Upon reading the script, Finneran felt that The Moorside told a necessary story that illuminated truths that had been distorted by media coverage.

Finneran’s next television role in 2017 was as Detective Chief Inspector Lauren Quigley, one of the protagonists in six-part ITV drama The Loch, a crime mystery set on the banks of Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands. Quigley is an ambitious English career detective drafted in to investigate a serial killer and acts as a foil to the other protagonist, working mother and local woman DC Annie Redford (Laura Fraser). Finneran was keen to star in the series after reading the first three scripts and finding both her character and the small community setting intriguing, in addition to the prospect of working with a former Downton Abbey director (Brian Kelly) and Laura Fraser, whose acting she had long admired. Finneran based herself in Glasgow during the filming shoot and enjoyed “the buzz, the architecture, the social life”,describing the city as “one of my favourite places to ever work

In 2017, she played Nikki Kirkbright in ITV’s Cold Feet.

In 2018, Finneran played Becka Savage in the Doctor Who episode “The Witchfinders“.

In 2019 she played Sally Newell in The Widow episode “Poteza”.

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Aaron Harris

 

Aaron Harris

Aaron Harris is known for his work on Returned (2015), Used to Temporary Happiness(2013) and Finesse (2014).

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Nicola Coughlan

Nicola Coughlan
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Shayne Ward

Shayne Ward

Shayne Ward was born on October 15, 1984 in Manchester, England as Shayne Thomas Ward. He is an actor, known for Coronation Street (1960), You AreBeautiful (2009) and Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway (2002).

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Jessie Buckley

Jessie Buckley

IMDB:

Jessie Buckley is an Irish singer and actress, who came in second place in the BBC talent show-themed television series I’d Do Anything, and subsequently played Anne Egermann in the West End revival of Stephen Sondheim’s A Little Night Music. Most recently, Buckley appeared on three BBC television series, as Marya Bolkonskaya in BBC’s adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace, as Lorna Bow in Taboo and as Honor Martin in The Last Post.

Buckley was born in Killarney, County Kerry, the eldest of five children. Her mother, Marina Cassidy, encouraged her to sing and coached her. She has a brother and three sisters. Buckley went to Ursuline Secondary School, an all-girls convent school in Thurles, County Tipperary, where her mother works as a vocal coach and where she performed in school productions. She played a number of male roles at school, including the male lead role of Jets gang founder Tony in the musical West Side Story and Freddie Trumper in Chess.

She has achieved Grade eight in piano, clarinet and harp with the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She is also a member of the Tipperary Millennium Orchestra. Buckley also attended The Association of Irish Musical Societies (AIMS) workshops during the summer, to help improve her singing and acting; it was where she was then recognised as a talented actress and was encouraged to apply for Drama School in London. Just before she auditioned for I’d Do Anything, she was turned down by two drama schools, including one the day before her first audition for the show. In 2008, Buckley won the AIMS Best Actress award for her portrayal of Julie Jordan in the Killarney Musical Society production of Carousel.

Buckley competed in I’d Do Anything, a search for a new, unknown lead to play Nancy in a London West End stage revival of the British musical Oliver. Buckley reached the final on 31 May 2008, finishing in second place behind Jodie Prenger. Before the final vote was announced in Show two of the final, Graham Norton asked the panel who they each thought was Nancy. Three of the panel said Buckley and two Prenger. John Barrowman and Denise van Outen said “Jodie”, while Barry Humphries, Cameron Mackintosh and Andrew Lloyd Webber said “Jessie”. However, the public voted for Jodie.

uckley performed at the Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Birthday in the Park show in Hyde Park, London on 14 September 2008, singing “I Don’t Know How To Love Him” as a solo and “Light at the End of the Tunnel” from Starlight Express with fellow I’d Do Anything finalists Keisha Amponsa-Banson, Niamh Perry, Rachel Tucker as well as Any Dream Will Do finalists Daniel Boys, Lewis Bradley, Ben James-Ellis and Keith Jack. On 18 September she and Aoife Mulholland performed with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra at an Andrew Lloyd Webber evening at the National Concert Hall in Dublin. On 26 August 2008 Buckley performed on Denny Street in Tralee, Co. Kerry where the first ever Millionaire raffle was broadcast live on RTÉ Radio 1. After this, Jessie performed at a charity concert in Tipperary, where she announced that she would be starting rehearals for A Little Night Music in London the following Monday.

Buckley was offered the opportunity to understudy Nancy, but turned it down in favour of another production: on 10 October 2008 it was announced that Buckley would be appearing in a revival of the Stephen Sondheim musical A Little Night Music, in the role of Anne Egerman, at the Menier Chocolate Factory, a fringe Studio Theatre, in London from 22 November 2008 to 8 March 2009. She appeared alongside Maureen Lipman and Hannah Waddingham in the production, which was directed by Trevor Nunn. A Little Night Music transferred from the Menier Chocolate Factory to the Garrick Theatre in London’s West End on 7 April 2009 (previews from 28 March – 6 April). A Little Night Music was Buckley’s West End debut. The show closed on 25 July 2009. Since then, she has appeared in a number of concerts nationally, including a Christmas concert alongside Maria Friedman, Cantabile – the London Quartet and Tim Rice, and in February 2010 appeared alongside Daniel Boys (and Night Music co-star Kelly Price) in a series of Valentine musical concerts.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: ahmetkozan

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Olwyn Feore

 

Olwyn Feore

Brilliant actress who hails from Clifden.

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Sharon Horgan

Sharon Horgan

Sharon Horgan was born on July 13, 1970 in Hackney, London, England. She is an actress and writer, known for Catastrophe (2015), Pulling (2006) and Imagine Me & You (2005). She has been married to Jeremy Rainbird since October 16, 2006. They have two children.

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Rory Keenan

Irish actor Rory Keenan has worked extensively in theatre and film. He performed leading roles on the London stage, he has also appeared in TV and film projects such as Peaky Blinders, War & Peace, Birdsong, The Guard, and soon Versailles. Rory resides in London, England where he continues to work regularly in theatre.

Rory Keenan
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Moe Dunford

Moe Dunford

IMDB Entry:

Moe Dunford is an actor, known for Vikings (2013), Patrick’s Day (2014) and Gridlock(2016).   Named as one of European films’ Shooting Stars by European Film Promotion. [2015]   In 2015, he received an IFTA in the category of Best Actor in a Lead Role in Film for Patrick’s Day.   He grew up in Dungarvan, County Waterford, Ireland.   In 2016, he received an IFTA in the category of Best Actor in a Supporting Role in TV Drama for Vikings.