CLONAKILTY stunt double Avril Murphy has recently returned home to West Cork after filming an all-female spy movie in Paris with Oscar-nominated actress Jessica Chastain.
Avril, who signed up as the second stunt double for the Hollywood star, Jessica Chastain, said she was delighted to be part of the new movie called ‘355’.
The Clonakilty woman has worked as a stunt performer for the past six years but she said her latest gig was ‘definitely a career highlight’ for her.
The film also stars Diane Kruger, Penelope Cruz and Lupita Nyong’o.
Avril’s parents Eileen Murphy, a former secondary school teacher, and Michael Murphy, who runs his own business, have always been hugely supportive of her career choices.
‘Coming from such a driven and encouraging environment, I always pushed myself. My career has taken many different paths including being a professional dancer, as well as sales, healthcare and stunt work.’
Avril said her motto in life is: ‘Nobody ever succeeded at anything unless they had fun doing it.’
She said she learnt from a young age that rejection and disappointments are all part of the process and the important thing is to keep believing in yourself.
‘If the passion is strong,’ she said, ‘anything is possible. Being positive helps too, because it brings the right people into your life.’
Avril began her career in the movie business by doubling for the main actress on Vikings Katheryn Winnick (who plays Lagertha) and she continued to work on shows such as Penny Dreadful and Into the Badlands, in which she doubled for Irish actress Sarah Bolger.
Avril also played the role of Esme and then doubled for Oksana in the Blake Lively movie The Rhythm Section. She also worked on the TV series Nightflyers.
Now Avril can add to her memory chest a photograph of her with Jessica Chastain filming in Paris with both of them wearing a red-belted vintage-style dress in an all-over floral print.
As readers will see from our photograph, right, the resemblance is uncanny.