Colin Farrell was 19 years old when he was barred from MaCarthy's Pub in Castletownbere, Co Cork, but the ban was lifted just a few years later, giving way to a special friendship.

"While his behavior was outrageous back then, he was just young and enjoying life," Adrienne MacCarthy, the owner of the west Cork pub, recently told Echo Live.

Farrell was 19 and filming "Falling for a Dancer" in Castletownbere when he was barred from MacCarthy's Pub.

Now 46, Oscar nominee Farrell was once known for his partying ways but gave up drugs and alcohol in 2006 for a sober lifestyle. In 2018, he checked into rehab as a "preemptive" measure to maintain his sobriety. 

MacCarthy said "we've watched Colin grow up" and that they now look forward to the Hollywood A-lister's visits after his ban was lifted.

“The first time he returned while filming 'Ondine,' I was in the middle of cleaning out the airing cupboard,” MacCarthy told Echo Live with a laugh.

The Cork pub was proudly featured in a scene of the 2009 film directed by Neil Jordan in which Farrell starred alongside Alicja Bachleda. (Farrell and Bachleda welcomed a son in October 2009, but separated the following year.)

The good-humored publican joked that Farrell didn't recall ever being barred from the pub: “Anyone who is barred doesn’t remember afterwards which is handy for them."

Last year, MacCarthy’s Bar shared photos of their “very special visitors” on social media, noting that they were “delighted” to see Farrell and his son.

Very special visitors today. Delighted to see him and his son

Posted by Maccarthy's Bar on Thursday, March 31, 2022

Farrell made another visit last September after giving his teenage son the choice between a road trip across America or the Wild Atlantic Way.

“It was great to see him again and we were really thrilled he popped in," MacCarthy said of Farrell's visit. "There were plenty of hugs.”

MacCarthy said Farrell, who she described as "very normal and down to earth," has been back to Castletownbere "a few times" and "knows that he is always welcome.” 

Of his visit in September, MacCarthy said: "I think he was proud to be able to show his son his Irish roots.

"He was delighted to be back."

MacCarthy added: “He doesn’t boast or brag. No matter what happens it won’t change him. His feet are always on the ground and he will never lose his footing.

“It’s crazy to think that his oldest son is the same age he was when we had to barred him from the pub. We just laugh about it now.”