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Mel Gibson and Sean Penn to film in Dublin

A major new feature film about the creation of the Oxford English Dictionary starring Sean Penn and Mel Gibson is set to shoot in Dublin

Mel GibsonThe Professor and the Madman will double the Irish capital for Oxford in the film, which centres on Professor James Murray (Gibson) who, in the 1850s, begins to compile what would later become the Oxford English Dictionary.

His prowess is punctuated by more than 10,000 entries he receives from a doctor – also an inmate – at an asylum for the criminally insane. 

The film is based on a book of the same name by Simon Winchester to which Gibson acquired the rights nearly 20 years ago; the Australian actor also produces alongside Bruce Davey, his founding partner at Icon Productions. Farhad Safinia directs. 

Ireland enjoys a high-profile production profile, largely due to Section 481, its generous tax credit programme. There have recently been calls from industry experts including the country’s Audiovisual Federation to make an early announcement to extend the scheme, ensuring it runs beyond 2020. 

Dublin has a variety of grand architecture including examples of Georgian properties such as Custom House and City Hall, which can double for period civic buildings in other cities around the world. 

The Irish capital is also due to host the Michael Douglas-produced We Have Always Lived in the Castle starring Marvel actor Sebastian Stan. 

For more on filming in Ireland, head over to our production guide

Mel Gibson photo via Getty Images/FilmMagic/Laurent Viteur. 


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