At only 40 Colin Farrell has made 50 films. The Irish actor from Castlenock, Dublin has that rare career where he gets to mix genres, work with Hollywood’s most famous directors and still get the chance to go off and try projects that are edgy and experimental. One such film was The Lobster, a dark and unusual comedy by the Greek filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos that originally premiered at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival.
“I loved working with Yorgos” he says, “you have probably heard actors talk about the importance of being able to have trust in your director, cause you are giving yourself over to him to a certain degree and you are putting stuff down that belongs to them more than it belongs to you and they get to edit. I have an enormous amount of trust in Yorgos’ ability, his brilliance, his single-mindedness and his creative purity.”
Farrell started his acting career at 20 after briefly thinking of following in his father and uncle’s footsteps (both professional football players). But he hated the training; something that is still abhors these days when he is taking on a physical role. Despite a failed audition to become a member of the Irish boyband Boyzone, his interests lay without a doubt in the creative field. The acting bug got him early, and in 2000 he made his U.S.-debut in Joel Schumacher’s Tigerland, which was also the first time the HFPA met with a then baby faced thespian. War movies seemed to be his thing then, and his big break came opposite Bruce Willis in Hart’s War. Despite that film not making money at the box office, American audiences took notice of the young actor and when he got a role in Steven Spielberg’s Minority Report, he became a household name. It was the second film he made with Schumacher, Phone Booth that really showcased his talent. He then won his first Golden Globe for the much loved black comedy In Bruges. From action movies to hilarious comedies, deeply disturbing dramas, thrillers, sci-fi films to the most epic military leader in history as the title character in Oliver Stone’s Alexander, there is not much that Farrell has not tried yet. His most famous TV-role was in the second season of True Detective.
The father of two sons, 13 and 6 years old, lives in Los Angeles and fell for the seemingly unavoidable healthy lifestyle. After avoiding the gym for years, he became a certifiable yoga aficionado, something that still makes him laugh: “I was absolutely mortified when I first walked into a yoga studio. My inferiority complex came out. But I took the class and that was it.” He has been regularly standing on his head ever since and living a quiet life with many family members who have relocated from Ireland.
This year, aside from The Lobster, he also got to play the baddie in J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. He finished shooting the Sofia Coppola-film Beguiled in New Orleans just before the holidays and also reunited with his Lobster-director for The Killing of a Sacred Deer.
“It’s a dream to work with him the first time, never mind the opportunity to work with him the second time.”