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Netflix crew says something ‘extra’ about West Cork

August 1st, 2022 9:45 PM

By Emma Connolly

The crew filming recently in Union Hall which they were hugely impressed with as a location. (Photo: Andrew Harris)

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THE crew involved in the Netflix series Bodkin has so far been blown away by what West Cork has to offer in terms of locations, talent and co-operation.

That’s according to two locals who were involved in the first round of filming which has just wrapped up, before cast and crew return in late summer.

Karen Coppinger, who runs a drama school for children in Skibbereen, was an extra for three days and said it was a really positive experience.

Karen, who has a keen interest in film and production, had been signed up to work as an extra on the TV adaptation of Graham Norton’s novel Holding last summer.

‘But my son got Covid so I couldn’t go, so I was delighted to be part of Bodkin,’ she said.

The title of her extra role was ‘pilgrim.’

‘My scenes included getting off a boat, when returning from a retreat,’ she said.

The work involved 12-hour days, with lots of waiting around, but Karen said all the extras were treated exceptionally well by Celtic Casting.

‘The effort involved was incredible – in some cases it took eight hours to get a particular shot.

‘Everyone involved was also extremely respectful of the area, of local residents and  of the environment which was great to see; and there was a good boost to the local economy as well with cast and crew staying in local hotels, guest houses and B&Bs.’

Aodh O’Donnell was  enlisted as marine coordinator. ‘I was brought in for my expertise on tides and currents, and my local knowledge of where to work and were not to work,’ he explained.

He also had to line-up boats of various descriptions for the three days of filming in Union Hall Harbour and at Dromadoon pier and Ballyalla beach.

The crew also used his purpose-built studio while they were in the area.

The €1.5m studio is located at the O’Donnell Design factory on the Baltimore Road.

‘The Bodkin crew were very impressed in terms of the locations we have to offer here which are second to none,’ he said.

Aodh is currently in talks with various production companies, directors and individuals involved in the industry, with a view to availing of his film studio.

For now filming for the seven-part first series – the first for Netflix by the Obamas’ Higher Ground Productions – has moved to Dublin and Wicklow There’s lots of talk locally, that the former president and first lady will base themselves in Glandore when crews return. Stranger things have happened.

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