US actor Will Patton believes his Irish bloodline is one of the reasons he felt ‘like he belonged’ during his visit.
The South Carolina star was speaking ahead of the release of his latest movie, Sweet Thing, which sees him play the father of the director’s actual children.
Patton said: “I always feel good when I’m in Ireland.”
The star explained he had friends in Co Sligo and stayed with them during his sole visit to Ireland.
He said: “I always feel good when I’m in Ireland. I’ve only been there once but I felt the good the whole time I was there.
“I just felt like I belonged there. You know when you go someplace and you feel, ‘It’s okay for me to be here, this is a place I feel alright in’.
“I have some friends in Sligo and I stayed at their place.
“A lot of my background, if you go back into my blood line is Irish so that might have something to do with the comfort.”
Patton was speaking to the Irish Sun as part of the promotion for his latest movie role in Sweet Thing.
He plays the father of two children, played by director Alexandre Rockwell’s actual kids. The movie views the world from the kids’ point of view, as they try to negotiate their way through life and support each other in the absence of their negligent parents.
Patton explained that the kids, Lana and Nico, were great to work with and the whole cast and crew got along like a house on fire.
He said: “I had worked with Alex way back…in the early 90s and we kept in touch over the years and been wanting to work together again over the years.
“Sweet Thing is made with his actual kids, his actual daughter and son and I play their father so I’m basically taking Alex’s place in the family!
“Alex’s work is almost like homemade movies with this kind of texture in the life inside them.
“It’s kind of like going into somebody’s living room and saying, ‘Okay, let’s make this dangerous kind of experiment’.
“I found that me and Lana and Nico, the kids, became a family pretty quickly and also just became really good acting partners, they were some of the best acting partners I’ve ever had.
“It just fell into place pretty well and it’s pretty extreme situations too so we had to be in an area of trust there.
“It’s thrilling! And there’s a lot of improvisation involved so you’re never really sure if you’re out on a limb too far so you have to trust the director when you do that. I find that really good directors will allow that.
“I did this movie… called American Honey and this other one called Minari and there’s a similarity just in terms of kind of being in an open place when you’re doing the work so that if something maybe goes in a different direction, one feels they can try that even though it might be wrong.
“And a lot of times the bravery of that is very right.”
The star also looked back over the past 18 months and revealed that he had remained working throughout the pandemic, although he did admit it was a frightening time.
Patton described it as “going into the front lines of some really scary dangerous in terms of not only the work but are we going to die if we do this now?
“I had been filming constantly during the pandemic and I’ve gotten used to it. I was back filming in July 2020 and not many people had been doing it.
“And never seeing anyone’s face except the other actor you’re working with while the camera’s rolling.
“I kind of like the masks, I could wear them forever and keep that low profile.”
Patton then took one last look at his time in Ireland and was full of praise for the beauty and mystery he encountered.
He said: “I drove all the way across Ireland but mostly stayed in Sligo and around that general area.
“All of the ancient ruins everywhere, they’re so mysterious and powerful and so beautiful.
“And I was interested that Inis Fraoigh was such a tiny island, I thought of it as this huge place!
“I’ve been thinking about coming back to Ireland and if I have time off that’s the place I most want to go.”
You can take a look at the trailer for Sweet Thing below.