Dance First had its world premiere as the Closing Film at the San Sebastian Film Festival on September 30.

I know we all wish we could have attended, because the thought of Gabriel Byrne playing Samuel Beckett on the big screen in glorious black and white is delightful, but alas! Most of us must wait for Gabriel’s Beckett a little longer and console ourselves with pics from the event and an early (very nice) review.

And be sure to check out the videos of Gabriel’s arrival at the festival, the Photocall, and the Press Conference, too!

With the exception of two images from Getty, all of the photos here have been provided by the San Sebastian Film Festival, and we thank them! Just click the Tab labeled Pictures at the link to see them all.<3

Photocall Pics


There’s that smile!
Gabriel explains something complicated about living on a farm in Maine to his co-star Sandrine Bonnaire, who appears enchanted!

Press Conference Pics

Red Carpet and Signing


Jonathan Romney/Screen Daily
October 1, 2023

Dance First: San Sebastian Review
Gabriel Byrne is transformed into Samuel Beckett for James Marsh’s stylised look back at the Irish writer’s life

You would naturally expect a film about Samuel Beckett to be on the lugubrious side. What’s surprising about quasi-biopic Dance First is that it is quite so lyrically lugubrious. Revolving around Gabriel Byrne’s engagingly dry performance – or performances plural – the film, directed by James Marsh and scripted by Neil Forsyth, offers a series of vignettes from the writer’s life, from childhood to old age, interspersed with dialogues between Beckett and himself. . .

The film is at its strongest when Byrne – either solo or artfully composited into dialogues with himself – is at centre stage. Giving a rueful but often tartly humorous evocation of Beckett as a vulnerable, tender figure, he convincingly humanises a writer often represented as an inaccessibly lofty secular prophet. Byrne brings Beckett the man into accessible focus. . .

Dance First will be coming to theaters soon, so stay tuned for more.

And Congratulations to Gabriel and all involved with bringing Samuel Beckett to our screens! We can’t wait to see him! heart

A still from the film

One Comment

  1. Great review ! Looking forward to this film,

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