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Wednesday 19 December 2018

Banville is a jolly good Wexford Fellow

John Banville
John Banville

Maria Pepper

The Booker prize-winning author John Banville was formally presented with the Fellowship of Wexford Film Society at the last Picture House film of the season on Tuesday.

The presentation was made by playwright Billy Roche who collected the award on behalf of John Banville at the season launch last October as the author was unable to attend at the time.

Film Society president Stephen Eustace held a public question and answer session with the acclaimed author and Wexford town native in front of an audience of film-goers before the screening of a surprise film. Banville has received many accolades for his novels but the Fellowship recognises his screenwriting work.

The award is presented annually to a Wexford person who has distingusihed themselves in the world of film. Banville has been nominated twice in the Best Screenplay category for an Irish Film and Television Award (IFTA) for 'Albert Nobbs' and 'The Sea'. He co-wrote 'Albert Nobbs' with the star of the film, Glenn Close and 'The Sea' which starred Ciarán Hinds, was an adaptation of his own 2005 Man Booker novel.

He also wrote the screenplay for 'The Last September' which starred Fiona Shaw, Maggie Smith and Michael Gambon.

His television work includes 'Quirke', based on the stories of Banville's crime fiction alter ego Benjamin Black, with Gabriel Byrne in the title role, and more recently the Sky Atlantic drama 'Riveriera' for director and co-writer Neil Jordan.

Previous recipients of the Wexford Film Society Fellowship include director Declan Lowney, actor Gary Lydon, film critic Philip Molloy, screenwriter Billy Roche and production designers John Paul Kelly and Anna Rackard.

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