By David Raleigh
A candidate in the upcoming general election is to take to the red carpet tonight hoping to win an international film award for his portrayal of a drug addict from the cult movie Trainspotting.
Limerick Fine Gael Cllr Tom Neville, who is also a trained actor, has been shortlisted for the gong at the Richard Harris International Film Festival this Saturday night, October 24, in the One Minute Monologue category.
Mr Neville, 40, was nominated for the award for his performance in the role of heroin addict Mark Renton, made famous by movie star Ewan McGregor in the 1996 Danny Boyle movie.
The festival, which began in Harris's native Limerick last Thursday culminates tomorrow night with a number of short film screenings.
Cllr Neville, who is a son of retiring Fine Gael TD Dan Neville, trained as an actor after emigrating for Australia during the recession after his job as a bar man and DJ dried up.
"To have the acting recognised at all is a dream come true, to be honest," he said.
Cllr Neville was filmed in a graffiti smeared alleyway in his native Limerick for the one-minute monologue ‘Choose Life’, which can be viewed on You Tube.
"Choose sitting on that couch watching mind-numbing spirit-crushing game shows, stuffing f*****g junk food into your mouth...Choose rotting away at the end of it all, p*****g your last in a miserable home, nothing more than an embarrassment to the selfish, f****d-up brats you have spawned to replace yourself," vents the aspiring TD in the classic monologue.
Cllr Neville, who has been selected by Fine Gael to run in the Limerick Constituency for the seat being left vacant by his father, said the Arts have always been "in my soul".
"I've always been interested in acting at school. Then, eleven years ago I joined Centrestage in Limerick. I left for Australia in 2010 and I actually started studying acting professionally for a year and a half. Now, I'm with Nigel Mercier's Limerick School of Acting," he explained.
However, with acting his "pastime", and politics his "passion", the wannabe TD said he would have to turn down any offers from Hollywood, at least between now and polling day.
"Politics need to change in terms of its communications style," he said.
"I've learned myself that acting brings people from all backgrounds together all on one level, and I'd like to help remove that air of intimidation that some might feel about politicians," he added.
"As a politician, you're a member of the community, you're a member of the locality, you're a member of the area, you're the same as everyone else," he said.