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Hansard and Irglova Win Oscar for ‘Once’
25 Feb 2008 :
Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova scooped the Oscar for Best Original Song for ‘Falling Slowly’ from John Carney’s low-budget pic ‘Once’ at the Academy Awards which took place in Los Angeles on the 24th February.
Hansard, who fronts Dublin band ‘The Frames’, expressed his surprise and delight at the win in his acceptance speech: “We shot on two handycams. It took us three weeks to make. We made it for a hundred grand. We never thought we would come into a room like this and be in front of you people. It's been an amazing thing. Thanks for taking this film seriously, all of you.”

Czech singer Irglova went on to say: “I just want to thank you so much. This is such a big deal, not only for us, but for all other independent musicians and artists that spend most of their time struggling, and this, the fact that we're standing here tonight, the fact that we're able to hold this, it's just to prove no matter how far out your dreams are, it's possible. And, you know, fair play to those who dare to dream and don't give up.”

‘Once’, shot on location in Dublin, tells the story of an Irish singer-songwriter (Hansard) who befriends a young Czech immigrant (Irglova). The pair produce a demo together as they fall in love over the course of a week.

Wicklow-resident Daniel Day Lewis also picked up the Best Actor Oscar for his role as an oil prospector in ‘There Will Be Blood’. Day Lewis recently received the BAFTA and Golden Globe Best Actor awards for the role.

President Marty McAleese had paid tribute to a congratulate the Irish Oscar winners.

“I am delighted to congratulate Daniel Day-Lewis on winning the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role, and Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova on winning the Oscar for Music,” she said.

“2008 has been a tremendously successful year for Irish cinema, as witnessed by the many international nominations and awards already garnered. Last night’s achievements at the Oscars are a further sign of the inexhaustible supply of creativity and talent with which this country has been blessed.”

‘No Country for Old Men’ was the biggest winner on the night, picking up four awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor for Javier Bardem.

The Best Actress Oscar went to French actress Marion Cotillard for her role in ‘La Vie En Rose’, while Tilda Swinton scooped the Best Supporting Actress gong for her role in ‘Michael Clayton’.

Other awards included ‘Best Original Screenplay’ which went to ‘Juno’ writer Diablo Cody, ‘Ratatouille’ was named Best Animated Feature Film, while Austrian Holocaust-era drama ‘The Counterfeiters’ picked up the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Best Original Score went to ‘Atonement’.

The award for Best Documentary Feature went to 'Taxi to the Dark Side'.

'Once' had another weekend win, receiving the Best Foreign Film award at the Independent Spirit Awards in the US which took place on Saturday 23rd in Santa Monica.

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