Ciaran Hinds, who is part of the star-studded cast of Belfast, spoke about a once-in-a-lifetime experience shooting the movie in his home-country of Ireland in his new uInterview.

Belfast is a moving story about a struggling family during a time where there was tension and violence between the Catholics and the Protestants. The conflict surrounds the economic and political tension of the time and is told through the eyes of a nine-year-old boy.

Director Kenneth Branagh, who directed films like Thor and Murder on the Orient Express, partly based the movie off of his own childhood.

Hinds gushed about working with the legendary director.

“Ken Branagh is a person,” he told uInterview exclusively. “He is so gifted in many ways. We know him as an actor, writer, director, producer in theater, film, television. He’s quite phenomenal but he’s also a warm human being. He’s generous. He’s loyal. He’s witty. He’s rigorous, and of course, he’s very intelligent. What he did when he cast us all, the sort of the five or six, the main roles, he cast just talked to us and let us get to know each other so that very quickly we could form a bond of a family. We knew things about each other that we wouldn’t have known if we were just going to work in a normal way. Then he left us alone to use our own feelings, our own instincts and he didn’t direct or tell people, I’d say he guided, he just guided things along and allowed them to happen and he created the space and the atmosphere for people to connect with each other.”

Hinds was quick to praise his co-stars in the movie. “It is a phenomenal cast that Ken gathered together. I don’t mean to be prideful by including myself in that. Jamie Dornan and Caitriona Balfe give such beautiful performances – complex and subtle, but full of truth because the stakes are very high,” he said.

But there was one co-star he was especially enthusiastic to work with.

“It was like all my Christmases had come at once,” Hinds said of working the legendary actress, Dame Judi Dench. “I’ve seen her work for so many years and how brilliant she is and then to get to work with her… to be that close to her to see her intelligence, her instinct at work her fleetness of thought was just fantastic so I was hanging onto her skirt tales in a way.”

Hinds and Dench starred as the grandparents to the nine-year-old boy, played by Jude Hill, who somehow at the beginning of his career, fit right in with the veteran actors.

“I mean how a 10-year-old could play with such truth and innocence and joy and how Ken captured it,” Hinds said. “It was a thrill actually just to be around the people because they’re all really great human beings but then to be able to be part of something that is truly creative and then you find out later that it’s not just a story about your hometown and the time when. It’s actually gone beyond that and it’s now reached out into the world and it’s touching people all over America, and now Australia and now Europe. It’s humbling and very, very gratifying.”

Read more about: