While Northern Ireland was in the grip of the Troubles in the late 1970s, something was happening south of the border which would have a global impact on music.
In 1976, a band was formed in Dublin after a young drummer posted on the school noticeboard looking for other musicians to join him. That band was U2.
Now a new movie is to reminisce about that time — from the unusual perspective of a rival band.
Filming will get under way in Northern Ireland next month on Killing Bono — a story about two Irish brothers chasing a dream of being rock stars.
Heading up the cast will be Brit actor Ben Barnes, star of The Chronicle of Narnia: Prince Caspian and The Picture of Dorian Gray. Barnes will be joined by Robert Sheehan, who starred in the Irish movie Cherrybomb.
Killing Bono is based on Neil McCormick’s autobiography ‘I Was Bono’s Doppelganger’. Barnes play Neil McCormick while Sheehan plays his hapless brother Ivan. Together they set up a band in Dublin in the late 1970s. Sadly for them, however, so do their classmates and rivals — and they go on to become U2.
The movie begins shooting in Belfast on January 11. The script is written by Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, who worked on The Commitments, while Nick Hamm will direct.
Castlewellan musician Joe Echo — who was recently nominated for a Grammy award for co-writing the Madonna track Celebration — will be providing the soundtrack for the film.
Meanwhile budding actors are being sought out to appear as extras in the movie. They will be expected to take part in three secret gig scenes to be staged in Belfast city centre. For information on how to be an extra, email firstname.lastname@example.org .