Belfast Telegraph

'Normal People' Liam Neeson and Lesley Manville to shoot film in Belfast this summer

Ballymena actor Liam Neeson is set to begin production on a new film in Belfast later this year.

The Hollywood star will appear alongside Oscar and Bafta nominated actress Lesley Manville in Normal People which is based on a play by Irish playwright Owen McCafferty.

The film will be directed by Lisa Barros D’Sa and Glenn Leyburn, who also helmed the 2012 Belfast-set film Good Vibrations.

Normal People will see Neeson and Manville portray happily married couple Tom and Joan, who together face the challenges thrown at them when Joan is unexpectedly diagnosed with breast cancer.

Production will begin in Belfast this July.

Speaking about their new feature, Barros D’Sa and Leyburn said: “It is a joy for us as directors to collaborate with Owen McCafferty, the justly celebrated playwright, on his first screenplay.

“Normal People takes an extraordinary look at ordinary love. It explores big questions and small moments of human connection with unique wit and warmth and a luminous and unflinching candour.

"We are thrilled at the prospect of bringing this beautiful, honest and unsentimental story to life with Liam Neeson and Lesley Manville in the starring roles, two of the most remarkable actors working on screen today.”

Normal People is jointly financed by NI Screen, Bankside Films, Head Gear Films, and the BFI.

Manville was recently lauded for her role in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread, for which she earned a best supporting actress Oscar and Bafta nomination in 2018.

Meanwhile, Neeson will return to the big screen this year in the Steve McQueen directed Widows, alongside Colin Farrell, and Hans Petter Moland's Hard Powder alongside Emmy Rossum and Laura Dern.

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