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11 Aug 2022

Kildare's Paul Mescal GAA shorts worn in Normal People to be auctioned in aid of Ukrainian filmmakers

GAA shorts worn by Irish actor to be auctioned in aid of Ukrainian filmmakers

Film props including a pair of GAA shorts from a hit Irish series Normal People, which starred Kildare's Paul Mescal, are going under the hammer in aid of Ukrainian filmmakers. 

The online auction launched this morning (Wednesday June 29) as part of a campaign organised by a group of independent Irish filmmakers to help colleagues affected by the crisis in Ukraine. 

A signed script of the first episode of beloved show Normal People, as well as a signed hardbook book of scripts will be auctioned alongside signed GAA shorts worn by actor Paul Mescal (Connell). 

The distinctive blue and yellow shorts featured in the series launched a thousand fan memes, had Gucci designing imitation pairs for sale, and introduced gaelic football to Hollywood and beyond. 

The shorts are in the blue and yellow colours of Roscommon, Clare, Tipperary and Ukraine. 

BBC's most streamed show of 2020, Normal People racked up over 60 million streams from its launch in April to December, with multiple award wins and nominations including four Emmy nominations, seven BAFTAs, two Golden Globe nominations, and fifteen IFTAs with nine wins including a Best Actor nod for Mescal. 

Chief Programmer of the Ukranian documentary filmmaker festival Docudays.ua, Darya Busel, said, "For the past four months, Ukrainian filmmakers are risking their lives and mental health to document the atrocities of war and let the world know about the war crimes, but not only that - they are gathering footage for future films. I'm sure the films that will emerge from the work that is being done now, will help us to understand this historical moment, when the whole world has to reconsider the principles on which it is built. 

"These films to come, will help us to face our traumas and to reconnect with ourselves. Because the worst thing the war is doing to you is that it takes your life from you. In every possible way; you can no longer plan anything, you are parted with your loved ones, you lose your home and everything you've been working so hard your whole life for... and in the end, one day, you can even be killed. It's true that maybe cinema cannot change anything in the short term but it can definitely change a lot in the long perspective.

"On behalf of our colleagues in Docudays and in Ukrainian film, I am very thankful to all who donate to support us in doing this important work.’

ICFR Ukraine's Orwa Nyrabia said, "We established ICFR because we believed that film people everywhere are a community, that attacking one film person anywhere is an attack on all of us, that with such acts of solidarity we can show the whole world that film people will stand up for each other. With our Irish colleagues efforts, that faith is renewed. 

"The plight of our Ukranian colleagues today concerns all of us, and no matter how small or bg our contributions can be, they first and foremost send a message that is not financial; ‘we are with you, you are not alone’." 

Veteran Film set auctioneer Sean Eacrett is hosting the auction online here

It closes Sunday July 17 at 6pm. 

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