I know, I know. You think Gabriel Byrne is off somewhere, enjoying his summer vacation. Perhaps traveling around Ireland, enjoying the gorgeous scenery. Or on a private island somewhere, reading a book on the beach. Or maybe just hiding out in his cool New York abode, avoiding the heatwave. Well, he IS in New York City, but he is definitely not hiding out!

No Pay, Nudity

After getting its initial kick from Kickstarter, this independent film is now officially in production.

gb-kevin-bannon-twitter-20140707Thanks to Kevin Bannon for sharing this pic of Mr. Byrne at work in his office!
Good thing Kevin was there. WE would have all fainted. Am I right? Of course I am…

CantonRep: [This article is no longer available on the Internet]

Canton native Lee Wilkof, a veteran Broadway, TV and film actor, emailed me last week to announce that he’s begun filming an independent feature titled “No Pay. Nudity,” whose cast includes Gabriel Byrne, Nathan Lane, Frances Conroy, Boyd Gaines, Loudon Wainright III and Donna Murphy. Wilkof is directing the film, a comedy about actors.

More news from DNAInfo.com:

“No Pay, Nudity” refers to an actor’s joke about work that doesn’t pay and requires nudity. It’s the directorial debut of Lee Wilkof, a frequent Broadway and TV actor who starred in the original “Little Shop of Horrors.”

The film will be shot all across New York, including on Grand Street in Williamsburg for a couple of weeks in the future, Rivera said. Williamsburg streets will largely be used as background for the actors’ homes, he said.

The film stars Byrne, known for movies like “The Usual Suspects” and “Miller’s Crossing,” as Lester Rosenthal, an actor who once had some success. Out of work and depressed, he starts spending time with his old actor friends, played by Lane, Conroy and Boyd Gaines.

They band together in hopes of reviving an old Actors Equity lounge, a now-defunct meeting place used for casting calls and auditions where many friendships were formed, Rivera said.

More news as it happens!

Way to Go: Death and The Irish

death-and-the-irish-gb-20140701“The manner of your death is not your choosing.
But how you prepare for death is.”

– Gabriel Byrne

As we know, Mr. Byrne is an outspoken supporter of healthcare and end-of-life reform in his native country. This show aired July 1 on RTE One in Ireland.

From Norah Casey’s website:

Presented by Norah Casey, whose husband Richard died in 2011, this frank and revealing film features first hand experiences of a broad range of people including healthcare professionals and people who are dying speaking openly and honestly about going through what will be the last months of their own lives.

We also hear thoughts and anecdotes from well-known figures such as actor Gabriel Byrne, broadcasters Marian Finucane and George Hook, plus comments from members of the general Irish public.

The programme prompts the question, given the fact that death is 100% certain to happen to every single one of us, why don’t we want to talk about it? It also examines the idea of planning ahead for a more dignified death.

Made in association with the Irish Hospice Foundation.

If anyone can grab the show and share it, that would be great. For now, here is a teaser:

Gabriel’s comments:

I think you know in the old days when Irish people had wakes they went back to the house and there was tobacco and there was whiskey and there was music and there was singing laughter and there was sex, sex especially because sex was a way of saying “we’re not dead – we’re going to keep life going”

Is the manner of your death your own choosing? No. How you prepare for death is of your own choosing.

Well, I think that the more you talk about it, the less fear you have about it. And the less fear you have about it the more you’re freed up to live, to live the life that you, that you have to live. Because let’s face, it we’re going to be dead much longer than we are alive, so why shouldn’t we prepare for that journey?

Hospitals exist in a purely practical way and they have to. Somebody comes in after an accident and they have to get them, to get them through, but in the event of a death for example, where people have to be brought together to be told that somebody has died, you don’t want that to happen in a corridor, people are rushing up and down.

Gabriel’s continued support for hospice care and death with dignity, in Ireland and the rest of the world, is so inspiring. I know everyone appreciates his efforts and his commitment to educating us about this issue.

Nobody Wants the Night

gb_robertpearyEyebrow alert!


Mediapro.es tells us:

Juliette Binoche, Gabriel Byrne and Rinko Kikuchi head the cast of the latest Isabel Coixet film, “Nobody Wants the Night”. Filmed in Norway, Spain and Bulgaria, the director is putting the finishing touches to her latest movie project in Tenerife. With the original script written by Miguel Barros (“Blackthorn”), the film is produced by Ariane Garoé S.L., MEDIAPRO and Neo Art Producciones, in co-production with Noodles Production (France) and One More Movie (Bulgaria)…

“Nobody Wants the Night” is the story of a woman Josephine Peary (Juliette Binoche) who wants to meet her husband, the explorer Robert Peary, and share with him his moment of glory on discovering the North Pole. The film tells the story of the wife’s journey across inhospitable lands, her adventures and her encounter with an Inuit woman Allaka (Rinko Kikuchi) which will change her rigid ideas about the world and her life forever. It’s an adventure film full of discovery, pain and survival and above all a marvelous love story.

nadie-quiere-noche--644x362Juliette Binoche and Gabriel Byrne–all bundled up!


Thanks to Alberto Jo Lee for sharing what I think might be a birthday celebration picture!

Louder Than Bombs

My friend in the business attended the Munich Film Festival and talked to Isabelle Huppert!

Just asked Isabelle Huppert about LtB, shooting will start in September in NYC, before that she will do a play with Cate Blanchett at the Lincoln Center in New York. She’s looking forward to the shooting with Joachim Trier, and she is portraying a war photographer.

Isabelle-HuppertIsabelle Huppert

Isabelle Huppert, winner of the CineMerit Award at the 2014 Munich Film Festival, is interviewed about her latest film in this video from the festival. She talks about making films and working with great directors:


Speaking of birthdays, director Ken Russell would have celebrated his 87th on July 3.

Critic and author Ken Hanke decided not to let this anniversary pass by without a proper celebration!

This Thursday, July 3, would have been Ken Russell’s 87th birthday. I have yet to adapt to not being able to call him on his birthday, so I decided to mark the day by scheduling his 1986 film Gothic (a film on which he celebrated his 59th birthday on the crypt set) for the Thursday Horror Picture Show on that day. This was also the first Ken Russell film shown by either the THPS, or the Asheville Film Society — only this time, it will be shown from a much-improved copy. It was — when it was run a little over four years ago — a film that perplexed a great many in the audience. Afterwards, Justin Souther told me, “You realize that someone who had never seen a Ken Russell movie was apt to be pretty lost, don’t you?” Actually, I hadn’t. I thought Gothic was reasonably accessible, but then I’d seen a lot of Ken Russell movies by the time I drove 200 miles to see this one. And then I remembered friends of mine who were seasoned Russell campaigners complaining that it was “just so weird” when they saw it. I had kind of thought that was part of the point of this phantasmagorical movie…

On quite another level, it’s worth noting that this was the late Natasha Richardson’s first theatrical film, though you’d never guess that from her assured performance as Mary Shelley. How assured is that performance? Well, it was the film Richardson’s mother, Vanessa Redgrave, requested be shown at her daughter’s memorial. That’s a pretty good endorsement.

 gothic8Intense! And muddy!

We miss Ken Russell and we miss Natasha Richardson.

On being photographed by Sam Taylor-Johnson

The Guardian provided a very illuminating article on naked celebrities.

Wait. Well, there are a few portraits of nude people in this article, but Mr. Byrne is wearing tears.

The actual title of the article is:

Naked, in tears or dressed like Bardot: the secrets of the sitters
Celebrities from Vivienne Westwood to Gabriel Byrne and Beth Ditto reveal what it’s really like to sit for their portrait 

Caution: the link above will take you to nude ladies and a crying man. And don’t read the comments. I’m going over there to slap those people… wink

gb-sam-taylor-johnson-2002Gabriel Byrne, by Sam Taylor-Johnson

 In his own words:

I was uneasy afterwards: I felt I shouldn’t have shown that side of myself. I wasn’t doing it as a character – I was doing it as me. It puts you in a very vulnerable position. The whole relationship between sitter and artist is interesting. The sitter has to have a vulnerability and a patience, a willingness to surrender control. And the painter or photographer has to be ruthless. I could sense that ruthlessness in Sam – not in a bad way, but in the sense that she was going to get this photograph, even if she had to wait for hours.

Sam sent me a copy of the photograph. I looked at it once, and then never looked at it again. But I did go, quietly, one afternoon, to see the exhibition of the photographs in New York. I was most interested in watching people’s reactions. I could see them thinking. The best art hits you in the deepest place – the unconscious. That’s what Sam’s work does.

Just A Sigh

Here is an interesting perspective on the film we all love so much, from The Movie Waffler:

For most of mankind’s lengthy history it’s the males of our species who have been the ones to choose their mates. Historically, women waited to be chosen by a suitor, hoping for a specific partner but all too often ending up with the first one to pick them. Over the course of the last half dozen or so decades this trend has been reversed. Ask any couple and you’ll find, if they’re completely honest, that it was the female of the partnership who ultimately decided the relationship was going to happen. The contemporary female now has her pick of suitors while the modern male waits around like a rescued mongrel in a canine sanctuary, hoping a suitable mate brings him home before he’s put to sleep.

Doug, the quiet professor of literature played here by Gabriel Byrne, is one such modern male. He’s chosen almost arbitrarily by a beautiful stranger but that’s enough to warrant his asking her to return to England with him, after little more than a spot of afternoon delight in a Parisian hotel room. Time is running out for Doug you see, and time is one of two themes explored in Bonnell’s exhilarating new film, the other being money.


In Treatment (2008 – 2010)

In response to the premiere of the new HBO series The Leftovers, IndieWire provides a list of “9 TV Shows That Were Total Downers But Still Worth It.”

Here is what they have to say about our favorite shrink and his troubled but apparently interesting patients:

HBO’s “In Treatment” was always a gamble. The show, which premiered nightly and followed the conversations between a therapist and his patients, didn’t seem so entertaining on the surface, but “In Treatment” eventually proved to be a fascinating character study worthwhile of thirty minutes, five days a week. It starred Gabriel Byrne as a therapist who would see a different patient each day of the week. For its three seasons, the show was frequently tense, gloomy and never an expected happily-ever-after. That’s what made “In Treatment” such a great series. It was a realistic depiction of people’s life problems and makes us realize that a clean, satisfying ending to our issues is not in store for most of us.

It is always so nice, and also gratifying somehow, to see In Treatment mentioned in articles such as this and also on social media. Some viewers remember it fondly and others are just now seeing the series–they find themselves stunned by how good it is, while we veterans of the show nod sagely. Yes, it was a great series. It IS a great series.


And it is also nice to see “graduates” of the series as they continue their careers. Sarah Treem, an executive producer for In Treatment who also wrote many episodes for the series, currently has a new play opening in New York City: When We Were Young and Unafraid. Ms. Treem’s writing for In Treatment centered on the young patients: Sophie, April, and Jesse. Her new play also has a cast of young people, but the lead character is a mother, played by Cherry Jones. Fans of Gabriel Byrne and Ms. Jones will recall their work together in A Moon for the Misbegotten.


Hilton Als, theater critic at The New Yorker, says this:

Ever since she played the emotionally doomed Catherine Sloper, in the 1995 revival of Ruth and Augustus Goetz’s “The Heiress”—she won a Tony for her portrayal—Jones has made her characters’ incorporeal beings, their spiritual selves, visible to her audiences. The effect can sometimes feel supernatural, and yet Jones is always grounded. Her Mrs. Warren, in the 2010 staging of George Bernard Shaw’s “Mrs. Warren’s Profession,” was mercenary and tough, but also full of hope, which kept her pure. In last season’s revival of Tennessee Williams’s “The Glass Menagerie,” Jones, who is Southern-born, found a match in the willful and sometimes brutally realistic single mother, Amanda Wingfield, a survivor who wishes on the moon. In the past decade or so, Jones, now fifty-seven, has played a number of mothers poised on a precipice, who keep themselves from falling by being indefatigable, if not indestructible. Now, in Sarah Treem’s weighty, flawed, and politically astute play “When We Were Young and Unafraid” (a Manhattan Theatre Club production at City Center’s Stage I, directed by Pam MacKinnon), she portrays a single parent named Agnes, who owns a bed-and-breakfast on an island off the coast of Washington State. It’s 1972, and the action is set in Agnes’s kitchen and dining room, where the emotional climate is often as thick as the weather outside…

The rest of the article is behind a pay-wall, I’m afraid, but the review goes on to give us a glimpse of the entire play and its characters and it certainly made me what to hop a plane to the Big Apple to catch this play. I love how Gabriel Byrne’s connections to the artists with whom he works continue to ripple through our lives and enrich us.

That’s all the Byrne-ing News for this summer–so far. Stay tuned for more. It would seem Gabriel Byrne is not planning much of a vacation and you never know where or when he might turn up next!

Many thanks to Angelle, Moondreamer, Elf, ByrnePerfection, and others who shared news and pictures. Much appreciated!

Your Gabriel Byrne Wallpaper reward for reading to the end:

gbsummerbluewallpaperSummer Blue


  1. Thank you Stella for sharing this new edition of Byrne-ing News with us. It is such a joy to read about all the projects GB is working with. They are all interesting but also very different.

    There are many beautiful and strong photos of GB in this article. When I see the photo of GB by Sam Taylor-Johnson, I can only look at it for a short time. Because it fills mye eyes with tears. It also feels like my heart is cut into little pieces and that it will never be repaired again.

    It is impossible to comment all things in the article here. But I was very glad to read about In Treatment again. Yesterday I saw one episode from IT again, and then I remembered what a fantastic tv series IT was and is!

    Thans for the Summer Blue wallpaper. It is like a comfort after I have seen the photo of GB crying.

    (from Norway)

  2. Looking forward to seeing all Gabriel Byrne’s new films!

  3. Nice to read your interesting posts again. Missed you.

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