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Movies & TV

05th Mar 2018

Three Billboards director Martin McDonagh just wrote a letter in Irish to his Dad’s hometown

Michael Lanigan

“I’d like to say thanks a million to everyone involved in putting up the billboards in Leitir Mealláin.”

Director Martin McDonagh has penned an open letter to his father’s hometown, Leitir Mealláin in Connemara, Co. Galway, after they erected three billboards in honour of the success of his third film, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri received.

The billboards first appeared after his movie picked up five awards at the BAFTAs on Sunday, 18 February. Written in Irish, they read “Comhghairdeas Martin McDonagh”, “Réalt Mór Leitir Mealláin” and “Réalt Mór Hollywood”, which translate to “Congratulations Martin McDonagh, big star of Leitir Mealláin, big star of Hollywood”.

Ahead of the 90th Academy Awards, in which the movie was up for awards in seven categories, McDonagh responded to the gesture by writing back in Irish: “Tá mé ag iarraidh mo mhíle buíochas a rá le gach duine a ghlac páirt leis na billboards a chur suas i Leitir Mealláin.

“Buíochas ó chroí don fheirmeoir a thug an talamh, don scoil, don Ionad Oidhreachta, do Chomhairle Chuigéil agus go mór mhór na leaids a rinne an obair chrua na billboards a chur suas.

“Tá na pictiúirí feicthe agam agus breathnaíonn siad iontach. Tá súil agam iad a fheiceáil dom féin amach anseo. Fair play díobh ar fad. Martin.”

The translation is as follows:

“I’d like to say thanks a million to everyone involved in putting up the billboards in Leitir Mealláin.

“Thanks for the farmer who gave his land, to the school, to the Heritage Centre, to the committee in Comhar Chuigéil and especially to the lads who did the hard work of putting up the billboards.

“I’ve seen the pictures, and they look brilliant. I hope to get over to see them for myself soon. Fair play to you all. Martin.”

In case you missed it at the time, meanwhile, here is our exclusive chat with Martin McDonagh back in January.

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