21 May 2014, 2:33pm
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May 2014

As May nears its end, so does my stint on Series 2 of THE FALL, this one written AND directed by Allan Cubitt and scheduled for transmission ‘some months hence’… I play DCI Jordan McConnell.

Another raft of episodes of the radio comedy No. 2s is scheduled for recording in early June at BBC Blackstaff.

Have had the great pleasure of working again with director Eoin O’Callaghan on a trio of unconnected Radio 4 plays in March and April – Desecrated (written by Hugh Costello), Tempting Faith (writer, Sean Moffatt)  and The Guts (adapted by Peter Sheridan from the novel by Roddy Doyle).

Congrats to Wipers Times and The Fall (1) by the way on well-deserved BAFTA nominations…

16 Dec 2013, 8:02pm
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Almost there!

Much, much too much water allowed to pass under the bridge since the last of these. Hey, I just forget!

The year has ended on as much of a flourish as it began… thankfully. A little quiet in the middle as you may have guessed.

Draft 2 of the feature film script THE PLATFORM has just been handed over, and I’m very happy with where it’s at at this point. Next stop, the (right) producer!

On a similar front, I’m script editing –  or will shortly be script editing – the Polish/Irish feature co-pro ‘Nocturne’, alongside Polish producer/director, Edward Porembny, and my ol’ mate Conor MacDermottroe. V much looking forward to that.

Recent acting? Well, back in the summer I’d the pleasure of working again with Hardy Pictures on the hugely-antcipated ’37 Days’, screening on the BBC in the new year as a significant part of the Beeb’s WW1 centenary commemorations. I play… King George V!

Enjoyed inhabiting the villainous persona of the Bailiff in Six Mile Productions’ Ulster Scots horror ‘Stumpy’s Brae’ which aired at Halloween… there was the (quite spectacularly different) part of Fr. Patrick in Partizan’s short film ‘Immaculate Misconception’… a fun outing alongside a host of fine actors in HITWG’s new radio commission ‘No. 2s’ , which cocks a timely satirical snook at the hypocritical shenanigans at Stormont… and even a ep of the Colin Bateman-penned, Stirling production for BBC NI, Scup.

Those are the headlines for the latter part of a piquant 2013… Do have a crackin’ Christmas and I’ll see (some of) y’all in ’14.

18 Mar 2013, 11:16am
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Wodehouse, Wipers Times, etc…

Ian Hislop & Nick Newman’s screenplay ‘The Wipers Times’, celebrating the satirical pamphlet and the men who produced it in the First World War trenches, has just wrapped in NI. Directed by Andy de Emmony and produced by David Parfitt, it’s to screen on BBC 2 later this year.

Didn’t do my bit until near the end by which time I’d missed the opportunity to work alongside the likes of Michael Palin and Julian Rhind-Tutt, but enormously enjoyed the scenes with Ben Chaplin – a gent and a pro – who played Cpt. Fred Roberts (the Times’ originator).

Couple of things to view in the week ahead – William Crawley’s ‘An Independent People’, next Sunday, BBCNI at 9pm… and the drama ‘Wodehouse In Exile’ (formerly ‘An Innocent Abroad’), the following night, Monday 25th, at 9pm on BBC4.

20 Dec 2012, 1:35pm
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December 2012

Just time – on the eve of the Mayan ‘armageddon’ – to squeeze in a last update…

Tim Fywell’s ‘An Innocent Abroad’ – the tale of PG Wodehouse’s wartime broadcasts while a ‘guest’ of the Nazis, and the fallout resulting –  has just wrapped in Belfast. An excellent screenplay by Nigel Williams, it features Tim Piggott-Smith and Zoe Wanamaker, is a Great Meadow production for BBC4, and will, I imagine screen in Spring 2013.

I play Duff Cooper, the seriously tee’d off Minister For Information in Churchill’s government (and some granduncle-type relation of David Cameron’s apparently)

Best for the festivities…

15 Oct 2012, 4:39pm
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HC (Andersen), Flann (O’B) & Death (On A Shoestring)

Rare enough, these scribblins… Just finished a couple of Hans Christian Andersen adaptations to be broadcast on Radio 4 over Christmas and New Year. The Red Shoes and White Snow will air on the afternoons of Dec 29th and Jan 5th. Both have been adapted by Frances Byrnes and directed by Eoin O’Callaghan.

Last Saturday, Annie Caulfield’s Yer Only Man – a sojourn in the life and minds of Brian O’Nolan (aka Flann O’Brien/Myles na gCopaleen/etc.) – played the Alley Theatre, Strabane, as part of the town’s FO’B festival. I’d no idea that’s where he was originally from! Directed by Marilyn Imrie, YOM was a Radio 3 play originally, and though we played to microphones and still had our scripts on stage there was plenty of drama, comedy and fascinating, often poignant insight into this most unique of Irish writers.

Morgaine (Fitz) is out with Accidental Theatre’s production of Dave Kinghan’s Death (On A Shoestring), playing the Baby Grand (Opera House) in Belfast next week (Tues 23-Sat 27, 8pm nightly) as part of the city’s Festival. Do check it out!

5 Jun 2012, 4:04pm
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Agent, etc… June 5th

Sorry if the length and frequency of these entries have become like missives from a lone oarsman cast adrift without water in the South Pacific…

VERY busy few months. Final phase of MA included, in mid-May, a very entertaining reading from a selection of writers at the Crescent AC, and launch of QUB Open Ear mag on board The Galley.

Congrats to all at Canderblinks! Good Vibrations opened the Belfast Film Festival on May 31st with screenings at the Ulster Hall and Movie House.

Have just narrated 8 eps of Farm Fixer for BBC NI. Presented by Nick Hewer, it’s to air in the autumn, I believe.

Last, but by no means least, delighted to have recently signed with Joe Phillips at Curtis Brown (

27 Feb 2012, 4:53pm
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Greater Love, March 4th

SUNDAY 4th MARCH 2012 @ 9PM BBC TWO Northern Ireland

A Year of Greater Love by Patrick FitzSymons

Emma (Lisa Hogg) discovers her daughter Alice has a degenerative kidney disease and needs a donor. She decides against her sisters wishes to dredge up the family past and track down her adopted brother. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01d23gp

You can also watch it on iPlayer, Channel 992 (Rest of UK) and Channel 142 (Republic of Ireland)

BBC Northern Ireland and Northern Ireland Screen bring you Primetime, original drama penned by new Northern Irish writers.

27 Feb 2012, 4:52pm
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Joseph & The Rope Bridge

Joseph & The Rope Bridge – another children’s picture book  – recently joined Vivienne & The Giant’s Boot on sale at the National Trust’s sites at the Causeway and Carrick-a-rede.

7 Dec 2011, 12:41pm
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December 2011

Just wrapped another radio drama – for The Wire on Radio 3… ‘Zurich’ by Pearse Elliott, to air on or about February 25th 2012.

Marking something of a departure for me (!), I’ve agreed to step into the role of Santa in Kaleidoscope’s stage adaptation of Tim Burton’s ‘The Nightmare before Christmas’, performing 5 shows between Dec 15-17 inclusive, at the Town Hall Newry. Should be fun…

…as was, in October, my outing as Reginald Lannister, cousin to Charles Dance’s Tywin on HBO’s Game Of Thrones.

‘A Year Of Greater Love’, my full-length screenwriting debut, is now through post-production and scheduled to air early next year… maybe Feb, but tbc.

Also next year, though not sure exactly when, RTE screen Dancing Girl Productions’ ‘Jo And Jack’ – a lovely animation for younger viewers – for which I’ve recorded ‘Dad’.

Given the current frequency of posts… I’d best say Merry Christmas now!

7 Sep 2011, 12:44pm
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September stuff

Playing Des, a BBC reporter, in Canderblinks’ ‘Good Vibrations’ movie. When Terri Hooley arrives at Portland Place with The Undertones ‘Teenage Kicks’ in his sweaty palm, Des recognises him and gets him past security, to John Peel, and his own little niche in music history…

… A Year of Greater Love starts shooting on the 25th I believe…

…and watch out in October for the next round of deep sea japes, courtesy of the good ship ‘Donegal Catch’!