Instantly recognizable to Outlander fans, Caitríona Balfe plays the time-traveling Claire Fraser in Starz’ historical drama. While traversing periods of history, Claire falls head over heels (literally) in love with rugged highland warrior Jamie Fraser and finds herself embroiled in various hairy situations, including the bloody Jacobite Rising. Caitríona’s performance in Outlander earned her a British Academy Scotland Award, an Irish Film and Television Award, two People’s Choice Awards, three Saturn Awards, not to mention numerous nominations for other accolades.
Accustomed to the big screen, Caitríona has acted in numerous films including The Devil Wears Prada, Super 8, Now You See Me, Escape Plan, Money Monster and Ford V Ferrari. Readers who watched the Irish animated film Angela’s Christmas Wish last month may have recognized Angela’s voice as Caitríona. In this tearful, the little girl dreams of reuniting her family for Christmas, especially her father who works in Australia.
In another life, Caitríona was a high fashion catwalk model. Highlights of her career include opening and closing fashion shows for Chanel, Givenchy, Dolce & Gabbana and Louis Vuitton, to name a few.
Lady Judi Dench
With a career spanning six decades, many and varied roles in television, film and on stage, Dame Judi Dench needs no introduction.
She made her professional debut with the Old Vic Company theater in the 1950s, for her performance in several Shakespearean plays. She established herself as one of Britain’s most important theater performers, before starring in hit TV shows A Fine Romance and As Time Goes By.
Fame and fortune were in store for this British actress, and she rose to international fame after being cast as M in GoldenEye in 1995, an iconic role she went on to play in eight films from James Bond until his final appearance in Specter (2015). Judi has also starred in a long list of acclaimed films, including Shakespeare in Love, Murder on the Orient Express and Jane Eyre.
The octogenarian was pictured on the cover of Vogue in June 2020 aged 85, making her the magazine’s oldest cover star. In the interview, Judi vowed never to retire. Asked about it, she joked, “No, no, no, no. Don’t use that word, Giles. Not in this house. Not here. Wash your mouth!”
Another name that needs no introduction. Formerly a model and dubbed The Golden Torso by the New York Times, Jamie Dornan changed direction in 2006 to pursue his dream of being an actor.
He gained international recognition for playing Sheriff Graham Humber in Once Upon a Time and twisted serial killer Paul Spector in The Fall. Jamie’s captivating performance in the latter was rewarded with an Irish Film and Television Award for Best Television Actor. He was also nominated for a British Academy Television Award for Best Actor.
Although the Hollywood actor is probably best known for his role as Christian Gray in the Fifty Shades franchise, he has starred in a number of acclaimed films, including Robin Hood, A Private War, My Dinner with Hervé and Synchronic. The 2020 outing Wild Mountain Thyme was met with mixed reviews and the cast was criticized for their inauthentic Irish accents – but in our eyes, Jamie can’t be wrong. Looks like he was born to play Pa in Belfast.
Belfast child actor Jude Hill has been signed by two agencies, has already won an award and is set to be nominated for an Oscar – all at the age of 11. In fact, Jude was only nine years old when he found out he had been cast in Kenneth Branagh’s semi-autobiographical drama, playing the title character Buddy.
Guilford’s talented youngster Co Down was nominated for Outstanding Performance at the British Independent Film Awards and received the Newcomer Award at the Hollywood Critics Association Film Awards.
Ashley Menzel of HCA described Jude’s performance as; “One that exudes joy, curiosity and innocence. Hill instantly captured my heart and I think it will capture the hearts of everyone who sees Belfast.
Set to make his television debut in the Magpie Murders series on Britbox next month, Jude has been trained by Shelley Lowry Talent at Portadown. The company will continue to represent him in the UK.
He was signed by United Talent Agency and performing arts company Berwick & Kovacik, both based in California. Believe us, Jude Hill is a name you will hear a lot more about.
Hailing from Belfast, Ciarán Hinds’ 45-year acting career began at Glasgow Citizens’ Theater as a pantomime horse in Cinderella. From his debut on stage (sorry, I couldn’t resist), the actor starred in many feature films, including The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover, Oscar and Lucinda, In Bruges, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.
In addition to film work, the star has amassed notable TV credits such as Mr. Rochester in Jane Eyre, Captain Wentworth in Screen Two: Persuasion, and most recently as sneering mobster boss Eamon Cunningham in the RTÉ crime drama Kin.
Ciarán currently lives in Paris with his wife, French-Vietnamese actress Hélène Patarot. Their daughter Aoife followed in her parents’ footsteps and starred in Derry Girls as feisty Mae Chung, and Normal People as Connell’s girlfriend Helen Brophy.
The 16-year-old made his debut in Stacey Gregg’s feature debut, Here Before, playing Andrea Riseborough’s 13-year-old son, Tadgh, alongside a strong local cast including Martin McCann, Eileen O’Higgins and Jonjo O’Neill. .
The Campbell College student started out with Belvoir Players Theater Academy and appeared in the school’s production, The Men Behind the Glass. All of his work was on stage but in 2019 he was asked to audition for Here Before and after a call back he was offered the role.
In 2020 Lewis also appeared in Oorlagh George’s Stranger with a Camera and in 2021 starred as Large Librarian in the television series Ted’s Top Ten.
Of course, he’s also starring alongside Jude Hill in Branagh’s new movie, playing Will.
“Belfast was a really good shoot. The atmosphere on set was fantastic,” Lewis told the Belfast Telegraph last year.
“I was only supposed to be on set for 10 days, but it ended up being 20 instead. Everyone I worked with on the film was incredibly nice.