Wife of Hollywood film director's love letter to Northern Ireland after tears of learning of move

Belfast City Hall

The wife of a Hollywood movie director found Belfast a "best kept secret," after staying in the city for seven months - when initially the thought of the move to the city brought her to tears.

In an article for the Hollywood Reporter, Adena Halpern who is married to Jonathan Goldstein, co-director and writer of Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, explained how she enjoyed life in the city with her dog and son while her husband was filming.

And it seems she rather enjoyed her stay.

While Adena admits she did not want to come to Belfast initially, she soon warmed to its charm.

She even revealed she misses it a lot since returning to the sunshine of Los Angeles.

She wrote: "When my husband told me we’d be moving to Belfast for seven months I started to cry.

"I had been promised London.

"I knew nothing about Belfast and sobbed, 'Do they even have dog groomers there?' 

Despite her reluctance, she settled in Holywood throughout her stay here and grew to love the County Down town, home to golfer Rory McIlroy.

Adena described the woodland walks as "like something out of a Jane Austen novel".

"I discovered a beautiful forest path that was nearly hidden by the trees that shrouded it.

"It was a quiet, green trail. Extremely safe and very un-L.A."

She also described sightseeing in west Belfast from a tourist's perspective.

Taking a black taxi tour of the area, Adena shared her thoughts on the people here: "For Belfastians, it’s (the Troubles) part of their DNA.

"A piece of their lived experience.

"Maybe this is why the people struck me as happier, she said."

She added: "So should you find your production heading to Northern Ireland, don’t cry.

"Yes, it will be a dramatic change from life in L.A. or New York, but you may come out the other side missing the place and its many charms."

Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves is set to be released in March.

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