Liam Neeson joins fellow NI acting stars James Nesbitt and Ciaran Hinds in ‘extra’ special virtual roles at Lyric Theatre
Hollywood superstar Liam Neeson has become the latest actor to film a virtual cameo for the 25th anniversary production of Marie Jones’ multi-award-winning play Stones In His Pockets.
eeson, who began his acting career at the Lyric Theatre, where the play will run for nearly four weeks, was joined by Ciaran Hinds and James Nesbitt, who have also filmed cameo roles to be screened on stage.
All three actors will appear virtually as extras in the play, which centres around a Hollywood blockbuster being filmed in Ireland.
And Sean Campion, who was in the original cast of Stones In His Pockets alongside Conleth Hill, will also appear. That initial show went on to have a successful run on the West End and then Broadway. Having won the Irish Times/ESB Irish Theatre Award for Best Production in 1999, the play also won two Olivier Awards in 2001 for Best New Comedy and Best Actor for Ballycastle man Conleth Hill, who has already filmed his cameo.
Neeson, patron of the Lyric Theatre, took a break from shooting In The Land Of Saints And Sinners, to film his virtual role. The Ballymena man, who celebrated his 70th birthday on Tuesday, evoked the spirit of his Taken character, Bryan Mills, to urge theatre-goers to come along.
“OK. Listen to me and listen to me very carefully. Come and see Stones In His Pockets,” he said. “It’s a theatrical experience. If you don’t, I will come for you, I will find you… and you know the rest…”
Neeson’s In The Land Of Saints And Sinners co-star Ciarán Hinds added: “Give yourself a treat. Go and see Stones In His Pockets at the Lyric Theatre. It’s playing all of June until July 3.”
Nesbitt, who was recently back home filming series two of BBC crime thriller Bloodlands, added his voice to the support for the play.
He said: “I’m asking, inviting, urging, demanding that you come see Stones In His Pockets — a seminal bit of writing from Marie Jones.
“It has stood the test of time, all over the world. If we ever needed a laugh and a bit of reflection, it is now. This is the show to do it. Go fight for a ticket.”
Among the other well-known names who have filmed virtual cameos are Adrian Dunbar, Tara Lynne O’Neill, Siobhan McSweeney, Tommy Tiernan, Saoirse-Monica Jackson, Ian McElhinney and Kerri Quinn.
The award-winning play centres around a Hollywood blockbuster being filmed in Ireland and two local men, Charlie Conlon (played by Gerard McCabe) and Jake Quinn (played by Shaun Blaney), who land roles as extras.
Stones producer Iwan Lewis, who is also artistic director of the Barn Theatre, said: “We filmed the stars of Northern Irish theatre, television and film. They are the stars but today they’re going to be playing extras on the big screen.”
Stones In His Pockets runs at the Lyric Theatre from June 7 to July 3. Tickets are available online at www.lyrictheatre.co.uk or in person from Lyric Theatre Box Office (028 9038 1081).