A U.S. actress has been cast in a leading role in an Irish production.

Grace Kelley, who was born in Alaska, plays one of the lead roles in the RTE series “Free House.” She beat off hundreds of applicants to be included in RTÉ's Storyland competition.

“Free House” has made it to the final stages of the competition which sees production teams produce a pilot for a potential new series. The final eight competitors will face a public vote and the winner will get to make an entire series of the show.

The show focuses on the protagonist Donal, played by Brendan O’Rourke, who after returning from a year traveling the world discovers he has inherited half the family home. Despite the warnings he decides to turn the house into a youth hostel.

Kelley plays the role of Gwen, a feisty American backpacker who manages to catch Donal’s attention.

Speaking about her role Kelley told Irish Central, “It means the world to me. I have met the greatest cast and crew and have made such good friends.  I'm so proud to be involved and I'll be sending the link to my family in the U.S.”

Kelley moved to Ireland from Juneau, Alaska when she was six years old with her parents.

The talented actress, who is a graduate of Trinity College’s prestigious acting school, has every attention to one day return to the glitz and glamour of Tinseltown.

“I hope to move back there in the next year to continue my acting career,” she told Irish Central.

Vote for free house here: http://www.rte.ie/storyland/episodes-free-house.html