Colin Far­rell just popped around, and it be­came a reg­u­lar thing then, he might drop in and watch a movie with Si­mon, stuff like that... they just be­came mates

Irish Independent - Weekend Review - - FRONT PAGE -

dis­cov­ered that Si­mon was en­ti­tled to a ven­ti­la­tor on his med­i­cal card.

When Si­mon lost his voice, and the use of his hands, tech­nol­ogy again came to the res­cue. Us­ing an eye-gaze com­puter, Si­mon now moves his pupils to write, draw and elec­tron­i­cally talk. He used it to pro­duce his beau­ti­fully-writ­ten 2014 mem­oir, It’s Not Yet Dark. Then he an­nounced his in­ten­tion to di­rect a film idea he’d been work­ing on for years.

“Lead­ing up to the shoot,” Ruth re­mem­bers, “there was this mo­men­tum build­ing about whether or not he’d be able to do it, and your emo­tions went from anx­i­ety about whether or not he could do it to the ab­so­lute de­light of oh my God, he’s do­ing it, and then some. As he was mak­ing it, he lost loads of weight, and he had th­ese blaz­ing eyes, it was so ex­cit­ing to watch.”

Si­mon got to know Colin Far­rell af­ter ask­ing the Hol­ly­wood A-lister to star in his film. He couldn’t, but the two men be­gan an email friend­ship. “Then there was one St Pa­trick’s Day I got this call to say that Colin would be call­ing out. He just popped around, and it be­came a reg­u­lar thing then. He might drop in and watch a movie with Si­mon, stuff like that, they just be­came mates. He did such a great job on the voice-over, and then there was also that eerie thing that he sounded quite like Si­mon’s old voice.”

When we speak, Si­mon had been ad­mit­ted to hospi­tal with an in­fec­tion. “We had a screen­ing of the doc­u­men­tary at the Light House Cin­ema (in Dublin) the other night and he couldn’t go, which was re­ally weird tim­ing in a way, or typ­i­cal tim­ing, you might say, given the way Si­mon does things. He would have loved to be in the thick of it.” Does he still talk about mak­ing more films?

“He thinks about do­ing more ev­ery­thing,” Ruth says, “he’s con­stantly won­der­ing what he’ll do next, those as­pi­ra­tions never go. Phys­i­cally, whether he can do an­other film, I don’t know. But then, I was wor­ried he couldn’t do it the last time, so what the hell do I know.”

It’s Not Yet Dark is out now in se­lected cin­e­mas

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Ireland

© PressReader. All rights reserved.