A big player on the Irish film front this year is sure to be Love Eternal director Brendan Muldowney’s new historical epic Pilgrimage.
The film is set in Ireland in 1209, and sees a small group of monks begin a reluctant pilgrimage across an island torn between centuries of tribal warfare and the growing power of Norman invaders. Escorting their monastery’s holiest relic – a rock used in the martyrdom of St. Mathias, the thirteenth apostle – to Rome, the monks’ progress is seen through the eyes of a pious young novice and a mute lay-brother with a violent past. As the true material, political and religious significance of the bejewelled relic becomes dangerously apparent, their path to the east coast becomes increasingly fraught with danger. The monks belatedly realise that in this wild land of ancient superstitions, the faith that binds them together may ultimately lead to their destruction.
Muldowney has gathered an extraordinary cast of Irish and international stars, led by the new Spider-Man Tom Holland as a novice monk. He is joined by The Hobbit‘s Richard Armitage as a misanthropic knight, and Walking Dead star Jon Berthal as a mute brother with a violent past. Local talent includes John Lynch (The Fall), Hugh O’Conor (The Stag), Ruaidhri Conroy (Jack Taylor), Tristan McConnell (Vikings), and Lochlann O’Mearain (Poison Pen).
The film had a seven-week shoot, with filming on Ireland’s west coast and in the Ardennes region of Belgium. The script comes from up-and-coming writer Jamie Hannigan, with Muldowney’s Love Eternal cinematographer Tom Comerford returning to work with the director once again.
Pilgrimage is an Irish/Belgian co-production with Conor Barry and John Keville of Dublin-based Savage Productions and Benoit Roland of Wrong Men North as producers. Financing comes from the Irish Film Board, Creative Europe, Broadcasting Authority Of Ireland, Wallimages, and the Wallonia Cultural Fund. XYZ Films is executive producing and will represent the film’s worldwide sales rights.
Brendan Muldowney directs this film set in Ireland in 1209AD, following monks who are transporting a mythical relic to Rome. A co-production between Ireland and Belgium, it’s due out in early 2016.
English actor Tom Holland, who will be appearing as Peter Parker/Spider-Man in Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War,” has been hard at work training for his role and has shown evidence of his growing talents via Instagram.
The 19-year-old “In the Heart of the Sea” actor, who will soon be appearing on the big screen in medieval Irish thriller “Pilgrimage” with Richard Armitage, was earlier announced as the next web crawler in June this year, following the footsteps of Andrew Garfield, who played the title role in 2012 and 2014 for Marvel.
Since the creation of the Crusader Kingdoms during the First Crusade it has become clear that the requirements upon that state are vastly different to any that has existed before, and that the protection of the holy sites, of pilgrims and of the interests of Christendom stand above petty nation based squabbles; that there is a higher calling for many and, whether through arm or through prayer, that calling is to serve the Lord.
Both the military and monastic orders fulfill these roles for all of Europe. They are established at local regional levels and feed into the organisation as a whole allowing a greater reach than almost any institution has had before this time, even Holy Mother Church has never had the temporal power, in political, military or financial matters, previously. But each of these Orders stands distinct from the others and each functions under a separate Papal Order which formerly recognizes the rules of the specific order in question. This Order and rule means that they stand both entwined with and yet significantly independent of the Church.