15 September 2019 The Irish Film & Television Network
Education / Training
Festivals / Markets
Locations Ireland
Post Production
Rep Bodies
Features & Interviews
Production News
Post Production News
VFX News
Animation News
Digital News
Festivals News
Training News
Cast News
Finance News
IFTA Film & Drama Awards
Galway Film Fleadh 2017
List Your Company
Daily News Bulletin
Site Map
Tom Vaughan-Lawlor on playing Padraig Pearse in TV3’s ‘Trial of the Century’
27 Apr 2016 : Seán Brosnan
Vaughan Lawlor as Padraig Pearse in ‘Trial of the Century’
With ‘Trial of the Century’ about to hit TV3 screens, we talk to Tom Vaughan-Lawlor who plays Irish nationalist Padraig Pearse in the highly anticipated mini-series.

Produced by Loosehorse Television and Treasure Entertainment, directed by Maurice Sweeney and written by Hugh Travers (with Colin Murphy co-writing the second episode), ‘Trial of the Century’ is described as a provocative take on historical storytelling, as Padraig Pearse - the leader of the 1916 rebellion - is put in the dock. In a trial that he was never afforded in real life, Pearse must defend the actions that changed the course of Irish history.

Not only is ‘Trial of the Century’ unique in that it offers an imagined, alternate history but the three-part series is also two parts drama, one-part contemporary jury as it book-ends with broadcaster Pat Kenny chairing a 12 person jury in the present day who are tasked with deciding on the fate of Pearse.

For Vaughan-Lawlor – best known for playing the gangster Nidge in RTÉ’s landmark series ‘Love/Hate’ – the attraction of playing Pearse had nothing to do with the unique format of the mini-series and everything to do with how the character was written.

"What was attractive was that they were offsetting the public figure with the private man. I loved that”, Vaughan-Lawlor tells IFTN. “To explore the national icon we see him as, but to counterpoint it with the intimacy of the individual.”

With Pearse one of Irish history’s more revered historical figures, Vaughan-Lawlor’s portrayal will also undoubtedly be put on the dock – did the IFTA-winning Dublin actor feel any pressure when preparing for the role?

“I didn't feel pressure when we were shooting. Not in an arrogant way”, says Vaughan-Lawlor, who played Charlie Haughey’s political advisor PJ Mara in RTÉ series ‘Charlie’ in 2015. “I just don't think it's helpful to worry about any of that. But now that it's nearing transmission, I'm a bit more nervous.”

When asked how he prepared for the 12 day shoot, which largely took place in February 2016 in Green Street Courthouse in Smithfield, Vaughan-Lawlor tells us that he both read Pearse biographies as well as watching documentaries chronicling the Irish nationalist.

‘Trial of the Century’ will air over three consecutive nights on Saturday 30th April, Sunday 1st May and Monday 2nd May.

Vaughan Lawlor is speaking to us from Cork, where he is currently shooting another true-life political tale – the feature film ‘Maze’ written and directed by Stephen Burke. He can also be seen later this year in the US crime drama ‘The Infiltrator’, opposite Bryan Cranston.

“Maze’ is about the 1983 escape of 38 IRA volunteers from the Maze prison in Belfast”, says Vaughan-Lawlor. “I play Larry Marley who was the architect of the operation. It explores a fictional relationship between Larry and a prison warder. ‘The Infiltrator’ is another true story, about an undercover US Customs agent Robert Mazur, played by Bryan Cranston, who exposed the money-laundering relationship between big US banks and Pablo Escobar's cartel. I play Steve Cook who was Mazur's Agency handler.”

BS IFTN Filmography: 'Trial of the Century' directed by Maurice Sweeney
BS IFTN Filmography: 'Charlie' directed by Kenneth Glenaan

Irish Supernatural Comedy 'Extra Ordinary' Releases in Over 100 Irish Cinemas this Friday the 13th
IFTN talks with Dale Longmore & John Quinn, Writers of new RTÉ Comedy Pilot 'Bump'
Mark O’Rowe discusses new Sky series 'Temple', which airs this Friday, 13th September on Sky One
Kilkenny Animated Launches 2019 Programme

IFTN talks with Dale Longmore & John Quinn, Writers of new RTÉ Comedy Pilot 'Bump'
Producer AnnaMay Mullins discusses The Irish Derby – Níos Mó Ná Rása, which airs on TG4 this Wednesday at 9:30pm
Free Industry Newsletter
Subscribe to IFTN's industry newsletter - it's free and e-mailed directly to your inbox every week.
Click here to sign up.

I, Dolours Director Maurice Sweeney Talks with IFTN
31 Aug 2018 
Busy Year for Tom Vaughan-Lawlor Ahead of Three Big Movie Releases
15 Sep 2017 
‘Barbarians Rising’ Nominated for News & Documentary Emmy Award
27 Jul 2017 
Mark O'Halloran is UCC Film Artist in Residence 2017-8
09 Jun 2017 

 the Website  Directory List  Festivals  Who's Who  Locations  Filmography  News  Crew  Actors

Contact Us | Advertise | Copyright | Terms & Conditions | Security & Privacy | RSS Feed | Twitter