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Film Details

Production companyCinegael
SponsorBórd Scánnán na hEireann/Irish Film Board
Channel Four
Country of originIreland
DirectorQUINN, Bob
Script/AdaptationQUINN, Bob
PhotographyDEASY, Seamus
Sound recordingDEASY, Brendan
EditingDUFFY, Martin
Art directionCONROY, Tom
Executive producerALLEN, Miriam
McBRIDE, Tiernan
Music composerDOYLE, Roger
Music performanceDOYLE, Roger
CastDonal McCann (priest), Maggie Fegan (Marian), Peadar Lamb (bishop), Martin O'Malley (boatman), Jonathan Ryan (secretary), Tomas Ó Flaithearta (sacristan), Sean Ó Coisdealbha (publican), Susan O'Flaherty (girl), Mary Winters (sister), Mary McCabe (wife), Anna Gill (mother of girl), Patrick O'Toole (husband), Freda Gillen (old woman), Oliver O'Malley (bearded man), Aine O'Malley (pregnant woman), Dominick O'Malley (boy), Chris O'Grady (doctor), Gary Fitzpatrick (man on beach), Michael O'Malley (man at confession), Mikey Eddie, John Jerry (old men). Pat Moran, Marty O'Malley, Martin Burns (oarsmen), Liam Winters, Austy Byrnes, Billy Gallagher (searchers), Michael Moran, John O'Malley (hanging scene), Tom Gillespie (baby).
Release date1987
TX channelRTE 1
TX date24/02/1988
SummaryAt the bishop's house, the bishop reads from an advance copy of a novel 'Budawanny: A Bishop's Tale' by Thomas Connor, with a statement on the flap saying that it is now a major film. He writes to the author telling him he has no need to read it. The bishop asserts that his job is to make religion work. The bishop recollects that the story is as old as the hills. A young woman, Marian, arrives at a pier and enquires of two boatmen whether the priest is on the nearby island. Marian 'falls' from the boat and is brought to the priest's house. At the priest's house, she is ill and is cared for by a doctor and the priest. While saying mass, the priest remembers a meeting with the woman. Marian recovers and begins to take on the role of housekeeper. When pressed by the priest about what happened on the boat, Marian says that she panicked, though they both recall their earlier liaison. Meanwhile, the bishop asserts the primacy of the rules of religion in a letter to the priest. At the priest's house during a nightime storm, Marian comes to the priest's bedroom and they embrace. The couple are observed being intimate on a beach by the sacristan. Later, the sacristan arrives drunk at the priest's house and gives money to the priest to say mass for him. Worried at a girl's disappearance, the locals search for her in the hills, but she reappears the following morning. Marian tells the priest that she is pregnant, while the sacristan, arriving at the house, overhears the conversation. The priest fantasises that the bishop will accept his having the child. At mass, the priest announces that soon they'll have another reason to call him Father and that he intends to look after the woman and child. On hearing this statement, the publican rings the bishop. As the priest and Marian are intimate by the fire, the bishop rings, summoning the priest to see him. While the priest is away, Marian is refused service by the publican. At the bishop's house, the priest is criticised for making such a statement from the pulpit, while he counters that Christ would have done the same. On his return to the island, he is met at the quayside by Marian who is leaving the island. Told that there has been an accident, the priest finds that the sacristan has committed suicide. At home, the priest reads a note from Marian which declares that it is her life also. The bishop reflects on the events and tells his secretary merely to acknowledge the receipt of the book. Above all, he thinks, he needs to be prudent. (V)
NoteIR Rel 2/3/1987 (Royal Hospital, Kilmainham, Dublin). This film's script won an Arts Council Film Script Award. Filmed on Clare Island, Co Mayo. Most scenes with the bishop and his secretary are in colour and synchronous sound, while those on the island are in black and white and sepia with inter-titles. 'Budawanny' has been translated as 'The Monk's Penis', the name of a prominent boulder on Clare Island. See also THE BISHOP'S STORY (Irl 1994). TX on RTE 1 in the INDEPENDENT EYE slot on 24 Feb 1988.
ReferenceFBN No. 5:8; FBN No. 4:3; IT 21/1/1993:11.

International Film Guide, 1968, brief review and synopsis by Liam O'Leary.
'Bob Quinn: Solo Performer', Bob Quinn's opinions on 35mm film, critics and post-Irish Film Board. Held at the Tiernan MacBride Library of the Irish Film Institute.
'New Films From Ireland: Budawanny'. Synopsis, cast and crew. Held at the Tiernan MacBride Library of the Irish Film Institute.
Sunday Tribune (Art Life), 9/6/02:5, review of Budawanny soundtrack composed by Roger Doyle.
Dublin Event Guide, 10-23/07/02:27, review of the Original Soundtrack to Budawanny (Lee Casey).
In Dublin, 26/11/87:25, 'Super Quinn', Bob Quinn talks about making a good Irish feature film for £100,000 using his latest success 'Budawanny' as an example (Gerry McCarthy).
Irish Times, 2/2/87:11, 'An Irishwoman's Diary', a look at Bob Quinn's latest film Budawanny (Lorna Siggins)
DistributorMOMA (US)
Production creditsp.c/pres: Cinegael, developed and produced with the assistance of Bord Scannan na hEireann/Irish Film Board, in association with Channel Four, exec. p: Miriam Allen (Cinegael), Tiernan MacBride (Bord Scannan na hEireann), d: Bob Quinn, sc: Quinn from the novel Suil Ie Breith by Padraic Standun (Indreabhan, Co Galway: C16 Chonamara, 1983; trans. by the author, publ. as Lovers by Padraig Standun, Swords, Co Dublin: Poolbeg Press, 1991), light, c: Seamus Deasy, a.c: Shane O'Neill, Declan Emerson, 2nd unit c: Joe Comerford, m/m.p: Roger Doyle, s: Brendan Deasy, s. dub: Tony McHugh, cont: Hilary Dully, caption dsgn: Joachim Boske, art d: Tom Conroy, ed: Martin Duffy, cnslt. d: Donal McCann, a.d: Martin O'Malley, Desmond Martin, stills: O'Neill, elec. super: Tony Swan, make-up: Rosie Blackmore, ward: Costume Shop, Galway, stunts: O'Malley, trainees: Robert Quinn, Emer Reynolds.
Genre/CategoryRural Drama
Feature Film Drama
Love Relationships
Rural Communities

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