Joining the St. Patrick’s Festival 2009 in celebration of all things green, the Irish Film Archive is proud to present Disney’s Darby O’Gill and the Little People (1959), the tale of a crock of gold, a wily Irishman and his battle of wits with the King of the Leprechauns.
Although actor Cyril Cusack and Chief Justice (later President) Cearbhall O Dalaigh are said to have picketed the film’s launch for what they felt was its ridiculous stereotyping of Irish people, this boisterous romp remains eminently watchable, even decades after its release. It has some wonderful scenes of merriment and horseplay, sparkling performances by Jimmy O’Dea and a young Sean Connery, and breathtaking special effects. There’s also the nightmare-inducing charge of a banshee-driven Death Carriage.
We are delighted to welcome film director Jim Sheridan to introduce one of his all-time favourite ‘Irish’ films, which, he says, features ‘some of the best performances ever by Irish actors Jimmy O’Dea and Albert Sharpe’.