Award-winning Irish filmmaker Graham Jones has released his seventh feature film online. The indie film tells the story of a prostitute in Dublin who encounters a series of men that appear strikingly similar to one another. Young Irish actress Caoimhe Cassidy (By the Bog of Cats, Abbey Theatre) gives an authentic performance in the lead role of Nola, while a battalion of male clones are portrayed with versatility by Irish actor Joseph Lydon (Low Level Panic, The New Theatre). The film was made with limited resources and has a considerable sense of realism, not to mention some magic realism.
“Volunteering in a good homeless shelter years ago, I learnt that sometimes individuals who can offer the greatest insight into our society receive the least attention from it,” says writer/director Jones. “The shelter was men-only, though and got me wondering what female homelessness might be like – so over the years I sought to find out. Of course, it’s worse for women because there’s a far greater sexual threat and risk of falling into prostitution, either while homeless or to stave off homelessness. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure if I could make this movie until Caoimhe Cassidy did a reading. But I was very reluctant to give up searching for the right actress because women have always been central to my movies, both in front of and behind the camera and it felt important to honour that. Nola is a strong female character, negotiating her way through a series of very difficult men and we are trying to give her a voice.”
“Working with Graham on Nola and the Clones was a completely new experience for me,” says lead actress Caoimhe Cassidy. “I had never worked in this way before, which was exciting. As we delved into the mind and world of Nola, I felt safe and at ease, even through some of her darker moments which were demanding at times. There was a lot of trust there.”
“It’s a story that hasn’t been told and because of the times I think it’s important,” concurs lead actor Joseph Lydon. “It was the most challenging and rewarding experience I’ve had. I played several different characters with several different personalities and body types – it was awesome.”