Dublin city and its environs have become one of the most filmed places on earth thanks to a massive interest in all things Irish.
Even when the subject isn’t Irish, moviemakers have used Dublin, as with Educating Rita in which Trinity College stood in for an English campus.
Dublin is, of course, one of the world’s great cities but like all large cities it has its dark side. Three famous crime dramas have featured here: director John Boorman’s bio of criminal Martin Cahill (played by Brendan Gleeson), The General; Ordinary Decent Criminal, directed by Thaddeus O’Sullivan and starring Kevin Spacey as Michael Lynch; Veronica Guerin, directed by Joel Schumacher and starring Cate Blanchett.
John Boorman was actually robbed by Cahill in real life and the director used the crime in one of the scenes. The Caravaggio painting of The Taking of Christ, featured in the film, the painting can be seen in the National Gallery of Ireland. Veronica Guerin was a well-known Dublin investigative journalist who worked for the Sunday Independent and was murdered by the criminals she was uncovering.
Roddy Doyle’s Barrytown Trilogy – The Commitments, The Snapper and The Van – have all been filmed around Dublin and capture the rich and funny character of the Irish people.
Ireland’s dramatic and violent past has been featured in such films as Michael Collins, Cruise-Kidman historic epic Far and Away and the recent Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or winner from director Ken Loach, The Wind that Shakes the Barley. As much as the humans involved, Dublin and Ireland took a starring role.
Braveheart was set in Scotland but director-star Mel Gibson filmed the action scenes in the Wicklow Mountains and at Trim Castle. He hired virtually the entire Irish Army Reserves as extras and the story goes that to a man they were reluctant to play the English Redcoats rather than the rampaging Scots.
Ireland stood in for New England for the 1956 filming of the American whaling classic, Moby Dick (shot in Youghal, County Cork) and, most famously, for the bloody beaches of France for the harrowing opening scene of Saving Private Ryan (Wexford stood in for Normandy).
That most Irish of films, The Quiet Man, starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara, was filmed in Cong, County Mayo. The scenic locations are visited by thousands of movie fans each year.
As is the Dingle Peninsula where David Lean filmed Ryan’s Daughter. Killary Harbour was where Richard Harris and Brenda Fricker starred in The Field.
My Left Foot, the story of paralysed writer Christy Brown played by Oscar-winner Daniel Day Lewis, was filmed in Dublin and scenes from the original The Italian Job and Jim Sheridan's In The Name of the Father were shot at the famous Kilmainham Jail.
Join us today on one of our award winning day tours and let us take you through many of these famous movie locations, discover your very own PS I Love You moment as we head through the rolling hills of County Wicklow.