The Oscars Go Green with a Record Number of Irish Nominations

Rachael Dunphy

Colin Farrell

The nominations for the 95th annual Academy Awards were announced today, with a historic nomination for Ireland in the International Feature film category. 

The nods, announced by actors Riz Ahmed and Allison Williams, contained a record number of Irish stars across a huge number of categories. 

In the Leading Actor category, two out of the five nominees were Irish, with Colin Farrell receiving his first Oscar nomination for ‘The Banshees of Inisheerin’. Paul Mescal of ‘Normal People’ fame also got his first nod for Indie smash hit ‘Aftersun’, with his sister, musician Nell Mescal keeping Twitter up to date with the Maynooth family’s reactions. 

The Irish men face up against Bill Nighy (Living), Brendan Fraser (The Whale) and Austin Butler as the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll in ‘Elvis’ for the Leading Actor award.

Supporting Actor also had two out of its five nominations hailing from Ireland, with both Brendan Gleeson and Barry Keoghan picking up nods for their performances in Martin McDonagh’s ‘The Banshees of Inisherin’. 

Kerry Condon also took her place in the lineup for Supporting Actress for her turn as Siobhán Súilleabháin in Banshees. She’s up against Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu, respectively, for their performances in A24’s sci-fi action ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’, Hong Chau in ‘The Whale’ and Angela Bassett for ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’. Bassett’s nomination marks the first acting nomination for a performance in a Marvel franchise. 

‘The Banshees of Inisherin’, which boasts close to an all Irish cast and was filmed on Achill Island, picked up seven nominations, including four acting noms, original screenplay, directing, original score and motion picture of the year. The film is 2/1 on Paddy Power to win the Best Picture award.

Some are calling snubs in the Leading Actress category, with bookies favourites Michelle Yeoh (Everything Everywhere All at Once), Cate Blanchett (Tár) and Michelle Williams (The Fablemans) taking their spots, with shock nomination Ana de Armas receiving her first nomination for the Netflix Marilyn Monroe biopic ‘Blonde’. A shock nomination was in store for Andrea Riseborough, whose leading performance in ‘To Leslie’ has received major support from actors on social media for the last number of weeks, despite no other nominations from any other award bodies.

There was also Irish representation in Live Action Short Film, with ‘An Irish Goodbye’ getting a nomination. The short, set in Northern Ireland, shows two brothers reuniting after the death of their mother, and was also nominated last week for a BAFTA. 

The Irish interest grew even further today when ‘An Cailín Ciúin’ or ‘The Quiet Girl’ was nominated for International Feature Film. The film, set in 1980’s rural Ireland, tells the story of Cáit, a-nine-year old girl sent to stay with distant relatives in the Waterford Gaeltacht.

The film’s social media shared that they could ‘barely believe it’ and that to be nominated was a ‘truly historic moment for the Irish film and the Irish language’. 

Irish film fans will however have to wait until the 13th March to see if any Academy Awards are making their way back to the Emerald Isle. And with (technically) 14 nominations, it’s safe to say we’re in with a good shot. 

Rachael Dunphy