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Both actors went home empty-handed on Sunday night after the 95th Academy Awards ceremony, but they still have a fan in Liam Neeson.
Liam Neeson has praised Barry Keoghan and Paul Mescal for having “huge potential” as actors.
The Ballymena man was speaking to Patrick Crosse of FM104 at the Stella Cinema in Rathmines, Dublin where he was attending the premiere of his latest film, Marlowe.
He said the Irish representation at the Oscars this year filled him with immense pride, giving a special shoutout to Barry Keoghan, who was nominated in the Best Supporting Actor for his role in The Banshees of Inisherin, and Paul Mescal, who was a Best Actor nominee this year after starring in indie flick Aftersun.
And although both actors went home empty-handed on Sunday night after the 95th Academy Awards ceremony, they still have a fan in Liam Neeson.
“I’m so proud of those guys. I hope they’re going to be okay. They’re young, incredibly talented actors. I hope they’re being guided in a good way,” the Taken star said.
“Barry was fantastic in The Banshees (of Inisherin). I loved that performance. I loved the whole movie.
“And Paul, too, is a very serious and interesting actor. Very, very sensitive and he’s got huge potential. And he’s what, 26, 27? God bless him. Great”.
The 70-year-old said that it’s “quite staggering” that the Emerald Isle has produced so many talented individuals.
“There’s phenomenal talent in this country – I've always maintained that for many, many years – proven by Game of Thrones, 14 Academy Award nominations this year.
“It’s quite staggering for a country this small”.
The Banshees of Inisherin lost all nine of its Oscar nominations this week as Everything Everywhere All At Once swept up a whopping seven awards.
Like Keoghan, Brendan Gleeson also missed out on the Best Supporting Actor gong for his role in the Martin McDonagh flick.
Vietnamese-American actor and filmmaker, Ke Huy Quan, scooped the award - his first Oscar - for Everything Everywhere All At Once.
Best Actor nominee Colin Farrell lost out to Brendan Fraser who won for The Whale, while Tipperary’s Kerry Condon missed out to Jamie Lee Curtis who won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Everything Everywhere All At Once.
Meanwhile, An Irish Goodbye took home the award for Best Short Film, and Irish animator Richard Baneham was among those who won the Oscar for Best Visual Effects for Avatar: The Way Of Water.