A film adaptation of John Banville's 2005 Booker prize-winning novel, The Sea, is scheduled to begin shooting here on September 17, featuring Ciaran Hinds, Sinead Cusack, Charlotte Rampling and Rufus Sewell.
Director Stephen Brown is currently in Ireland, with a casting director, auditioning children for the three child parts. Much of the film will be shot in Rosslare, County Wexford where Banville set the novel, with Rosslare fictionalised as Rossmore. Banville, who grew up in Wexford town, spent his summer holidays in Rosslare as a young boy. Rossmore also features in his latest novel, Ancient Light.
In The Sea, Max Morden, a widowed art historian, returns to Miss Vavasour's boarding-house at Rossmore where, on the brink of adolescence, he spent a memorable summer, with two friends, a brother and sister. Now, he has come to this sea-side place in order to deal with the death of his wife from cancer. "This is not so much a novel about memory as an examination of what it is to have a memory at all, to have had experiences that seem to be on the brink of slipping away," enthused Nicholas Lezard, who reviewed the novel in The Guardian.
The film of The Sea - Banville also wrote the screenplay - will be produced by Luc Roeg's company, Artists Independent. Meawnhile, Tyrone Productions, in partnership with Ed Guiney's Element Pictures, will soon begin filming the author's Benjamin Black novels for BBC television. Banville writes crime fiction under the Benjamin Black nom de plume. The pathologist and reformed alcoholic Quirke is the protagonist of these atmospheric crime novels, which are mostly set in 1950s' Dublin.
In partnership with its star, Glenn Close, Banville also co-wrote the screen-play to the film, The Secret Life of Albert Nobbs which received three nominations in the 2011 Academy Awards. (Close was nominated for Best Actress, but, once again, the gong eluded her.) Banville also wrote the screen adaptation of Elizabeth Bowen's novel The Last September (1999).