Caitriona Balfe, who won the best actress in a drama IFTA for her hit series Outlander on Thursday night, says she loves working with fellow Irish actress Maria Doyle Kennedy on the the show as they have chats "as Gaeilge".

Doyle Kennedy has joined the fourth season of the time-travelling drama as Jamie's aunt Jocasta, and leading star Balfe seems delighted to have a fellow Irish woman on set.

Speaking to RTÉ Entertainment at the IFTA red carper at Dublin's Mansion House, Monaghan-born Balfe said: "She’s brilliant, she’s been such a great addition to the show. She’s wonderful, she’s just so bloody talented and amazing, it’s been great to have her on set."

She added that they enjoy having chats in Irish while working together on set "which is really nice".

"Although mine’s really bad", Balfe added with a laugh.

Maria Doyle Kennedy has joined Outlander season four 

Balfe, who plays the leading role of Claire Randall in Outlander, is midway through shooting the fourth season of the show in Scotland.

"It’s good, it’s about as cold as this!", she joked of the Baltic weather in Dublin on Thursday night. "It’s great, we’re halfway through, it’s really nice to be there for a fourth year and for all of us to still have jobs!

"Every season brings it’s own unique challenge and each one feels different, and this year there’s a really nice comfortability with it, but there’s still new things to discover which is always really nice."

Caitriona Balfe in Outlander
Caitriona Balfe in Outlander

Balfe added it was "so exciting" to be back in Dublin for the annual celebration of Irish film and television, adding that it's "kind of weird" she has never worked in the industry at home.

The IFTAs give her a chance to "meet other people in the industry" and given the stellar year for Irish film and TV it's "really nice to be part of something like this".

Caitriona Balfe at the IFTA 2018 Awards in Dublin
Caitriona Balfe at the IFTA 2018 Awards in Dublin on February 15

Click here to see all the winners at the 2018 IFTA Awards and find out what Gabriel Byrne had to say about receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award here.

See the red carpet arrivals at the IFTAs here.