A film directed by Irish playwright Martin McDonagh was tonight nominated for an Oscar.
The comedy, Six Shooter, was nominated for a prestigious Academy Award in the Best Live Action Short Film category.
After the nominations were announced in Beverly Hills, California, Simon Perry, the chief executive of the Irish Film Board, said: “This is fantastic news and we congratulate all involved with this hugely successful short film. The recognition of Irish filmmakers at this level once again illustrates the high standard of new film-making talent Ireland has to offer.”
Other Irish hopefuls included Cillian Murphy for his role in Neil Jordan’s Breakfast on Pluto and Pierce Brosnan for The Matador failed to make the list.
Six Shooter, which is the playwright’s first move into film, boosts an impressive list of Irish talent including Brendan Gleeson in the lead role, Ruaidhri Conroy from Hart’s War, David Wilmot from Laws of Attraction and Aisling O’Sullivan in supporting roles.
The black comedy follows Gleeson as he makes a sad train journey home, just hours after his wife’s death, but on the trip he encounters a strange and possibly psychotic young man.
The short film was shot on location in Wicklow, Waterford and Rosslare.
Playwright McDonagh has won the prestigious Olivier Award for Best New Play for two years in a row, for his work ‘The Pillow Man’. He first gained recognition with the multi-award winning play the ‘Beauty Queen of Leenane’.
His plays have been sold to over 40 countries and translated into over 28 languages, performed on stages from Broadway to Sydney to the West End.
Other nominees in the Best Live Action Short Film category include Ausreisser (The Runaway), Cashback, The Last Farm and Our Time Is Up.
As predicted, Brokeback Mountain leads the field with eight nominations, including best picture, best actor for Heath Ledger and best director for Ang Lee.
The other best picture nominees are Truman Capote biopic Capote, race drama Crash, Steven Spielberg thriller Munich and George Clooney’s McCarthy-era drama Good Night And Good Luck.
The 78th Academy Awards ceremony will take place in Los Angeles on March 5, 2006.