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‘Banshees of Inisherin’ First Look: Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson Lead Dark Friendship ‘Break-Up Story’

Oscar winner Martin McDonagh writes and directs his first feature set in his native Ireland, re-teaming up with both "In Bruges" actors.

"The Banshees of Inisherin"

“The Banshees of Inisherin”

Searchlight

The “Banshees” are a-calling.

Set in the fictional island of Inisherin during the very real Irish Civil War in 1923, Martin McDonagh’s “The Banshees of Inisherin” stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson as two lifelong pals whose friendship is shattered after conflict arises. Barry Keoghan and Kerry Condon also star in the first feature written and directed by Oscar winner McDonagh set in his native Ireland. “The Banshees of Inisherin” premieres October 21 from Searchlight.

Following “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” and “Seven Psychopaths,” writer-director McDonagh opted to revisit the onscreen dynamic between Gleeson and Farrell found in “In Bruges,” this time telling a “break-up story,” as McDonagh revealed to Vanity Fair.

“This is about things getting inexorably worse from a simple, sad starting point,” McDonagh said. “The love was there, like in any broken-down relationship, but it was interesting to have them not have that ease with each other — because they love each other as actors, as people, but they cannot have that onscreen.”

He added, “I wanted to make something that someone who likes ‘In Bruges’ would go with, but that could be a little more, at least at the outset, odder or weirder — and definitely something different.”

As for the cinematography, McDonagh had a specific vision in mind: “I wanted it to be as beautiful as possible, to aim for beauty and for cinema.”

The filmmaker quipped, “Because if you heard of a story of two guys grumbling at each other, and you didn’t have the epic kind of beauty, it might get a little tiresome.”

McDonagh summed up, I’ve seen a lot of U.K. and Irish films that don’t seem to aim for the cinema as their number one choice. When I’m watching ‘Mean Streets’ or ‘Goodfellas,’ I’m hearing 90 percent of it. I’ll miss some Italian or New York dialogue, every couple of lines — but it doesn’t matter. I’m going with it.”

The historical context also further fuels the tension between Farrell and Gleeson’s rife: “The Irish Civil War was between two sides who, a year before, were on the same side and fighting the British and the British Empire,” McDonagh stated. “The tragedy of that war was that everyone was close friends — and then they were killing each other.”

Check out the first look at “The Banshees of Inisherin” below.

“The Banshees of Inisherin” premieres October 21.

Banshees of Inisherin

“The Banshees of Inisherin”

Searchlight

"The Banshees of Inisherin"

“The Banshees of Inisherin”

Searchlight

"The Banshees of Inisherin"

“The Banshees of Inisherin”

Searchlight

"The Banshees of Inisherin"

“The Banshees of Inisherin”

Searchlight

"The Banshees of Inisherin"

“The Banshees of Inisherin”

Searchlight

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