Golden Globe winner Martin McDonagh has told RTÉ Entertainment that there is a "joy in working with friends" like Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell and Woody Harrelson.
The London-Irish filmmaker, who received a number of BAFTA nominations on Tuesday morning, said: "They're all really nice, most of them like a drink and they're just brilliant, they're the best actors of their generation really.
He added: "But the reason you keep going back to them as well as that they're nice people; it's great to go to work knowing that everyone's going to do a good job but you're going to have fun too... There's a joy in working with friends."
McDonagh has most recently been working with Rockwell and Harrelson on Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, which scooped four Golden Globes earlier this week.
The film also stars Oscar-winner Frances McDormand as Mildred Hayes, a grieving mother whose daughter has been murdered. She bemoans the lack of progress in the investigation and goes to war with her local police department, which is headed by Harrelson and Rockwell.
McDondagh said the part "was written for her" as it had to be "someone who had complete integrity and a drive and an anger, or could play all of those things".
"One of the things that was important to Frances and I was not showing the soft side of her, not saying, 'Yes she's doing this, but she's actually a really nice person'.
"Cutting that completely. Because you know there's a decency to her or she wouldn't be doing what she's doing, but we didn't want to over-egg that, we didn't want to let the audience off the hook with that."