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Award-winning playwright Conor McPherson steps behind the camera for the first time with Saltwater, a tale of ordinary folk in extraordinary circumstances. In an out-of-season coastal town in Ireland, the local chippie is on the verge of going under. Ever since his mother's death, Frank (Peter McDonald) has been helping his father (Brian Cox) hold the fort. But dad is in hock to the local bookie and loan shark (Brendan Gleeson) so Frank takes matters into his own hands and robs the bookie. Needless to say, things don't quite go as planned.

Inspired by a dream McPherson had several years ago, the film began as a stage play called This Lime Tree Bower, which took the form of a series of monologues from the three main characters: Frank, his younger brother Joe, who feels his mother's absence the most, and Ray, a university tutor who is in love with the brothers' older sister.

McPherson then teamed up with producer Robert Walpole, who, along with his directing partner Paddy Breathnach, had turned his first screenplay, I Went Down, into an award-winning hit film. Saltwater went into production just as McPherson's acclaimed play The Weir was earning raves on Broadway in New York.

The film world-premiered in the Panorama section at the Berlin Film Festival in February where audience reaction was favourable. It had its Irish premiere at the Galway Film Fleadh in July and will open in Ireland through Buena Vista in September.


Type of film
Conor McPherson 1st Feature
The Plague Monkeys.
Conor McPherson.
Exec prods
David M Thompson, Rod Stoneman, Clare Duignan.
Robert Walpole.
Conor McPherson.
Oliver Curtis.
Prod des
Luana Hanson.
Emer Reynolds.
Main cast
Peter McDonald, Brian Cox, Conor Mullen, Laurence Kinlan, Brendan Gleeson, Valerie Spelman, Eva Birthistle.
BBC Films, BBC Worldwide, Irish Film Board, RTE, Alta Films.

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Last updated 24th June 2005

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