27 September 2020 The Irish Film & Television Network
‘The Man Who Shot The Great War’ To Air On BBC One NI On November 17th
13 Nov 2014 : Seán Brosnan
A new BBC Northern Ireland film, ‘The Man Who Shot The Great War’, will air on BBC One Northern Ireland on Monday, November 17th at 9pm.

The film tells the story of Lance Corporal George Hackney, 36th Ulster Division, born in Belfast in 1888. For the first time, viewers will get to see some of the most evocative images he shot and follow George’s own ethical and spiritual journey. Documented in his diaries, the film explores the profound effect war had on him. What transformed a man from fighter to pacifist, from Presbyterian Elder to the man looking for answers and embracing a new eastern religion, the Bahá’í faith, in later life.

The film was directed by Brian Henry Martin, produced by Dermot Lavery with Ben O’Loan acting as Assistant Producer. Editing took place atYellow Moon Post Production by Andrew Tohill. Documentary photography was completed by David Barker while Drama photography was completed by Michael Lennox.

The landmark programme, made for BBC Northern Ireland by Belfast-based DoubleBand Films, includes George’s images of soldiers starting their journey - crossing the sea to war, relaxing with friends and comrades and life in barracks on the Front Line. These contrast with images from the first day of the Battle of the Somme, life in the trenches and poignant reminders, that for many soldiers, they would never return home.

The one-hour film includes expert insight into George’s photographs and his personal journey from historians, authors and friends and tries to uncover what his duty was in the war and how he got such access. George’s words, captured in his diaries, are brought to life through dramatizations by actor Ian McElhinney (‘Game of Thrones’) taking on the role of George. Viewers can retrace young Hackney’s steps through the battlefields of Belgium and France where George stood with his camera, and back to the very house in Belfast where he lived and which has lain almost untouched since his death in 1977.

Producer Dermot Lavery of DoubleBand Films said: ‘The full philosophical implications of George Hackney’s remarkable journey from the Battle of the Somme to the end of his life only revealed themselves as we prepared to make this documentary. He was in fact just a simple, modest Belfast man - but a man whose message still rings true even today. In a way all we had to do was not let him down.’

‘The Man Who Shot The Great War’ is on BBC One Northern Ireland on Monday, November 17 at 9.00pm.

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Director Ciara Hyland discusses Cogadh ar Mhná
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