×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

10 Actors to Watch: Barry Keoghan Pulls Double Duty with ‘Dunkirk’ and ‘Sacred Deer’

Barry Keoghan is one of Variety‘s 10 Actors to Watch for 2017. For the full list, click here.

Keoghan stood out in the strong ensemble of Christopher Nolan’s “Dunkirk” as George, the doomed young lad who sails with Mark Rylance’s kind boat captain. If you were taken in by his gentle sweetness in that film, prepare to be jarred by his icy performance as Martin, a teenager who terrorizes Colin Farrell and Nicole Kidman in “The Killing of a Sacred Deer.” Muses the 24-year-old: “Everyone seems to hate me or think I’m evil. I guess that means I did my job.”

Keoghan still lives in Dublin, where he and his brother were raised by his grandmother after years in foster care. His big break came in 2013 on the hit Irish series “Love/Hate” — in his first episode, his character gunned down a cat. After seeing Yorgos Lanthimos’ dark comedy “The Lobster,” he added the Greek filmmaker to a running list of directors he wanted to work with. They include fellow Irishman Lenny Abrahamson (“Room”) and Chris McKay (the upcoming “Nightwing”). So when he had the opportunity to audition for Lanthimos, he was thrilled. He sent in a tape from the “Dunkirk” set and was soon meeting in London for the audition. And while some may find Martin terrifying, Keoghan found it appealing that he was no mere monster. He notes, “The trick to playing someone like that is you have to believe everything you’re doing is for the right reason and have no judgment on them.”

Up next, Keoghan will be seen with Jim Broadbent and Stephen Rea in “Black 47” and in the crime drama “American Animals.” Outside Hollywood, he’s busy boxing. Asked if he worries it could affect his face, he says: “It makes it more interesting, I think. Gives you that edge. It might make me better looking, we’ll see.”

Influences: His grandmother, Paul Newman, Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy
Representation: Agency: WME, Troika (London) MaFarlane Chard (Ireland); Management: Management 360

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Robert Duvall (Oberst Kilgore)

    Studiocanal Steps Up its Heritage Game in Germay Via Arthaus Classics

    LYON, France – Continuing its devotion to heritage film in Germany, Studiocanal is bringing classic movies back into cinemas while also releasing newly restored DVD/Blu-ray collections of beloved titles. The leading producer-distributor enjoyed a major hit this summer with the one-day re-release of Francis Ford Coppola’s “Apocalypse Now: Final Cut,” which scored 12,000 admissions in [...]

  • Dewanda Wise Captain Marvel

    'Jurassic World 3' Casts DeWanda Wise in Leading Role (EXCLUSIVE)

    DeWanda Wise, best known for her breakout role in Netflix’s “She’s Gotta Have It,” has landed a leading role in the third installment of Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment’s “Jurassic World” saga. She joins Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, who will reprise their roles from the previous films, as well as Sam Neill, Laura [...]

  • awkwafina-taron-egerton-split

    Awkwafina, Taron Egerton Get Santa Barbara Fest Salute

    The 35th Santa Barbara Intl. Film Festival will honor Awkwafina, Taron Egerton, Florence Pugh and Taylor Russell with Virtuoso Awards on Saturday, Jan. 18. The quartet mark the first wave of recipients of honorees at the festival. The four actors are being saluted for their 2019 work, including “The Farewell,” “Rocketman,” “Midsommar,” and “Waves,” respectively. The festival [...]

  • NEZHA Chinese Movie

    Animation Is Film Festival Spotlights Some of China's Top Toons

    Over the summer, “Ne Zha,” the first 3D Chinese-produced animated feature released in Imax theaters, did something no one expected. It has grossed $700 million and instantly signaled the arrival of Chinese animation as an international creative force. The blockbuster is part of the lineup of the Animation Is Film Festival, which runs Oct. 18-20 [...]

  • MK2 Nabs Rights to Chilean Western

    MK2 Nabs International Distribution Rights to Chilean Western 'The Settlers' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Paris-based powerhouse MK2 Films has picked up international distribution rights to Felipe Gálvez’s Chilean Western “Los colonos” (“The Settlers”), one of the most buzzed-about projects to come out of Chile in recent years. “We are very proud to be representing such an artistically ambitious period film and one of such crucial importance and vital necessity [...]

  • Zombieland Double Tap

    'Zombieland: Double Tap' Bests 'Maleficent: Mistress of Evil' on Thursday Night

    Sony’s sequel “Zombieland: Double Tap” has launched with $2.9 million at 3,052 sites in Thursday night previews in North America, topping Angelina Jolie’s “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” with $2.3 million. “Zombieland: Double Tap” is opening at 3,450 domestic locations. It’s the first major studio comedy since “Good Boys” opened in mid-August and wound up as [...]

  • The Laundromat Netflix

    Court Refuses to Block Netflix Release of 'The Laundromat'

    A judge has refused to block the release of “The Laundromat,” a Netflix film based on the Panama Papers scandal. Jurgen Mossack and Ramon Fonseca — the attorneys at the center of the scandal — filed suit in federal court in Connecticut on Tuesday, claiming they were defamed by the film. The attorneys asked for [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content