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Brenda Fricker, Siobhán McSweeney, Charlene McKenna, Helen Behan and Pauline McLynn cast alongside Conleth Hill in ITV drama Holding

[Photo: Conleth Hill as PJ Collins and Siobhan McSweeney as Bríd Riordan] [Photography: Conor Horgan/ITV]

Brenda Fricker, Siobhán McSweeney, Charlene McKenna, Helen Behan and Pauline McLynn cast alongside Conleth Hill in ITV’s four part adaptation of Graham Norton’s bestselling novel Holding

Directed by Kathy Burke, written by Dominic Treadwell-Collins and Karen Cogan and produced by Happy Prince and Port Pictures in association with Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland and co-produced by Virgin Media Television

Academy award winning actress Brenda Fricker will return to television to star alongside Conleth Hill in ITV’s four part adaptation based upon Graham Norton’s funny and tenderly perceptive debut novel, Holding, which is being filmed on location in West Cork, Ireland and directed by Kathy Burke. 

She is joined by leading Irish actors Siobhán McSweeney (Derry Girls, Nowhere Special, Collateral) Charlene McKenna (Peaky Blinders, Vienna Blood, Bloodlands), Helen Behan (Elizabeth is Missing, The Virtues, This is England ’90), and Pauline McLynn (GameFace, Father Ted, Angela’s Ashes).

Completing the cast are Clinton Liberty (Handsome Devil, Normal People), Amy Conroy (The South Westerlies), Olwen Fouéré (Beast), Eleanor Tiernan (Bridget and Eamon), Gary Shelford (Belgravia), Lochlann Ó’Meárain (Smother), Sky Yang (Halo), Demi Issac Oviawe (The Young Offenders), Norma Sheahan (Bridget and Eamon), and Anne Kent (Fair City) with Calum Rea, Jane Spollen, Jim O’Donnell, Pat Kinevane, Karl Quinn, Michael Fry, Maria Connolly, Ian Brooker, Abhainn Harrington, Christopher Logan, Molly Logan, Terhas Gleeson, Ivet Corvea, Gary Murphy and Felix Brown. 

Casting is by Louise Kiely Casting.  

Olivier award winning actor, Conleth Hill (Game of Thrones, Dublin Murders, Vienna Blood) plays local  police officer Sergeant PJ Collins, a gentle man who hides from people and fills his days with comfort food and half-hearted police work. He is one of life’s outsiders, lovable, but lonely and a bit rubbish at his job. 

When the body of long-lost local legend Tommy Burke is discovered, PJ is called to solve a serious crime for the first time in his career. Unearthing long buried secrets, PJ finally connects with the village he has tried so hard to avoid.

Siobhán McSweeney (Derry Girls, Nowhere Special, Anthony) plays vulnerable, messy Bríd Riordan. Bríd had been due to marry Tommy before his untimely disappearance, whilst Charlene McKenna is youthful, stuck Evelyn Ross who desperately loved him. The two women are at the heart of the community and neither is above suspicion. 

Brenda Fricker takes the role of Lizzie Meany, a shy presence in PJ’s life who has been battling her own demons and secrets as PJ comes to discover… 

Commented Brenda Fricker: “‘I am ecstatic to be part of this wonderful production, in beautiful Skibbereen, and finally not to be playing a mother! Mrs Meany is a bit of a dark horse. She has had a dreadful life but has retained her values, her friendships and most of all her sense of humour, keep a sharp eye on her.”

Commented Siobhán McSweeney: “I cannot think of a better script in a better place with a better cast and crew. I’m in heaven being back in Cork.” 

Set in the insular fictional village of Duneen, West Cork, on the edge of Ireland, a place with its own climate and rhythms, Holding is a darkly funny and an inherently Irish production with support from Screen Ireland.

ITV’s Head of Drama, Polly Hill has commissioned the series for the channel and will oversee production from the broadcaster’s perspective.

Holding is written by Dominic Treadwell-Collins and Karen Cogan for Dominic’s ITV Studios label, Happy Prince, and adapted from Graham Norton’s debut novel of the same title.  The drama is produced by Martina Niland (Once, Sing Street) for Port Pictures in association with Screen Ireland with co-production partners Virgin Media Television.
Filming is currently underway in West Cork, Ireland. 

Holding is in association with, and distributed internationally by, ITV Studios. 

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