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Movies & TV

26th Mar 2024

Ardal O’Hanlon and Amy Huberman cast in movie about underdog side drawn to face Shamrock Rovers

Patrick McCarry

Amy Huberman

“It has been a joy to see this incredibly talented cast and crew bring it to life.”

Amy Huberman and Ardal O’Hanlon are among the cast of a new football documentary based on a series that ran on our TV screens over a decade ago.

O’Hanlon made an appearance on our House of Football show, last year, and spoke warmly about his life-long love of the game, supporting Leeds United and living through the raucous Jack Charlton era with the national team.

The Father Ted and Derry Girls star is starring in a new movie that has the potential, if it is done right, to be a real success.

Fran The Man has begun shooting in Dublin and is a feature-length follow-up from the popular mockumentary series, Fran, which aired on Setanta Sports over a decade ago. Darragh Humphreys reprises his role from the series, surrounded by an ensemble that includes Ardal O’HanlonAmy Huberman (Flora & Son), Risteard Cooper (Après Match), Toni O’Rourke (God’s Creatures) and Deirdre O’Kane (Intermission). A release for the production outlines the film’s plot:

‘When non-league St Peter’s Celtic are drawn to play titans Shamrock Rovers in the first round of the FAI Cup, assistant manager Fran Costello hopes his team will pull off one of the greatest shocks in football history. But it isn’t long before the sh*t really hits the Fran… ‘

Amy Huberman
Ardal O’Hanlon, Darragh Humphreys & Amy Huberman star in Fran The Man.

Amy Huberman and Ardal O’Hanlon star in Fran The Man

The mere mention of Shamrock Rovers into the mix adds an extra element of appeal to football fans here. Rovers hold the record for league (21) and FAI Cup (25) triumphs.

The feature mockumentary, written by Richie Conroy, directed by Stephen Bradley and is being produced by Collie McCarthy’s Forty Foot Pictures, with support from Screen Ireland and RTE. Paul Grindey, the executive producer, has been involved in movies such as In Bruges, Slumdog Millionaire and The Father.

“I’m very happy to be shooting Fran The Man with Richie Conroy’s very funny and clever script,” said Stephen Bradley (not to be confused with the current Shamrock Rovers manager, of the same name). “We have assembled an inspiring cast and crew and their energy will be up on screen in the form of loads of laughs and a whole lot of heart.”

Collie McCarthy from Forty Foot Pictures added, “It’s great to be up and running with my first feature on home soil. The script is a gem and it’s been a joy to see this incredibly talented cast and crew bring it to life.”

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