McCourt Returns to Teaching
By Irish America Staff
February / March 2002
Frank McCourt has been giving accent coaching to veteran American actor Paul Newman. After a dinner one night, Paul told Frank that he was playing an Irish character and would like some `accent’ coaching. It was arranged that Paul would visit Frank at his apartment where Frank proceeded to read Paul’s lines into a recorder. They then enjoyed coffee and a chat as Paul regaled Frank with stories of the making of Butch Cassidy. Next day, Frank received a jug of Tullamore Dew whisky as a gracious thank you gift from Paul.
Brothers Frank and Malachy McCourt have signed on to act in a new film written by Irish American New Yorker Mike Carty.
Carty’s film — co-directed with Irish writer Colum McCann — centers on three twenty-something characters Sean Lenihan (Dan Brennan), Bridget (Christy Meyers) and Rock (Javier Pice), growing up in the fictional town of Greenwood, an Irish American enclave in the Bronx.
Sean’s brother Danny, played by John Carry (Mike’s cousin) is the local tearaway while Sean’s other brother Jimmy is a cop.
Frank plays the Lenihan brothers’ father, while Malachy plays one of his closest friends, a straight-up guy against Frank’s hard-drinking character.
McCann got Frank involved after both fell in love with the script.
“The script is great,” said Frank, “it’s very tough and unyielding. It’s a very different view of Irish America, there’s no sentimentalism, shamrocks or shillelaghs.
“I’m playing my real-life father’s role,” he says wryly, “one of those hapless Irish men who should never get married.” ♦