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Making The Cut: Career advice from the cast and crew of ‘The Fall’
01 Oct 2015 :
Valene Kane shares her advice along with creator Allan Cubitt and DOP Ruairí O'Brien
With the CAO deadline fast approaching (1st February), IFTN has scanned the archives to gather key advice from the cast and crew of the IFTA-winning ‘The Fall’, the critically acclaimed Belfast-set police procedural starring Jamie Dornan and Gillian Anderson.

If you are a prospective writer, DOP or actress pondering over breaking into the Irish film industry, check out these snippets of advice on what they consider the kernels of their craft from creator/writer Allan Cubitt, DOP Ruairí O’ Brien and actress Valene Kane.

Allan Cubitt is a three time BAFTA-nominated writer and director, best known for his work on crime dramas such as ‘Prime Suspect 2’, ‘Murphy’s Law’ and for creating and writing all the episodes of ‘The Fall’.

Here is what he had to say about breaking into screen-writing:

Allan Cubitt: ‘I meet new writers all the time and my advice is always to start in the theatre if you can – a theatrical set up where the script is revered is a great place to start. It costs much less to put on and you could probably convince good actors to take part in it. It helps nurture your voice as a writer and if you succeed there, television work may come knocking for you. I don’t believe that episodic television is the best place to start as a writer – where characters and storylines may be handed to you and there may be little room to manoeuvre. The theatre teaches you to push the boat out, experiment and be brave.’

DOP Ruairí O’Brien is best known for working on television shows such as ‘Moone Boy’, ‘Murphy’s Law’ and ‘Corp+Anam’ and has an IFTA nomination to his name for the film ‘Five Minutes of Heaven’. For Ruairí, it’s all about the script and knowing as much as you can about every element of film.

Ruairí O Brien: ‘What I always look for is a strong script. If you have a good script, whether its very dialogue driven or not – once the story is good that’s the most important thing.’

‘People joke about it but I think everyone in film should do a ‘job-swap day’ where everyone turns up and does someone else’s job so the cameraman does the make-up and the make-up artist records the sound and the sound guy does the catering while the caterer does focus pulling! It would be chaos but it’d be great for everyone to understand each other’s roles on set. I like taking the odd directing job is because it ultimately helps me help the directors and helps me empathize with them and the actors.’

Actress Valene Kane had a very significant role in the second series of ‘The Fall’, playing Rose Stagg, the embattled ex-girlfriend of serial killer Paul Spector. For her, acting is about knowing who you are and pursuing other interests in order to enhance your acting abilities.

Valene Kane: ‘Know who you really are yourself, because if you don’t know who you are and what type of actor you are you’ll find it really hard navigating and you’ll find it really easy to be swayed by other people who are your competition. Make sure you have other interests, read books, watch films, and don’t let acting take over your life because you’ll become a one dimensional person. Just be a real human in the world, and be inspired by other things in the world, because that way you’ll be a more interesting person and actor.’

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