Screenwriter / director Jim Sheridan has had an amazing career – his films have been nominated for bunches of Oscars, and he’s worked with talents ranging from Jake Gyllenhaal to rapper 50 Cent – so it’s only fitting that the Irish Film Institute in Dublin is hosting a season marking Sheridan’s finest work.
At a screening last week of perhaps his most famous film, My Left Foot, its Oscar winning star Daniel Day-Lewis (he won the first of his two Best Actor nods for his starring role as Christy Brown, the Irish writer/artist who was afflicted with cerebral palsy) reminisced about the 1989 masterpiece.
"This film and working with Jim Sheridan changed my life. I doubt I will have a happier experience. Not just because the film had a kind of success that we certainly didn't expect, but more really because of the way we made the film,” Day-Lewis recalled.
"Jim, with his great openness and generosity, gave me the chance to work properly for the first time . . . I might have had a decent career without this film but the career I have had, and the wonderful opportunities I have had in my life, I had because Jim Sheridan and producer Noel Pearson gave me a chance to do this film.”
My Left Foot was nominated for five Academy Awards and won two of them – Day-Lewis’ and Best Supporting Actress for Brenda Fricker, who played Christy Brown’s mother.
Sheridan, whose next film, Dream House, stars Daniel Craig, Rachel Weisz and Naomi Watts, is as proud of My Left Foot today as he was when it first debuted.
"The director Danny Boyle has said, ‘Your first movie is always your best movie' and I think that's true. My Left Foot was a first film and I still think it's an amazing movie,” Sheridan feels.
Truer words were never spoken. The film is available online in a re-mastered/restored DVD format.