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Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 February, 2005, 17:22 GMT
Father Ted star backs budget film
Frank Kelly
Frank Kelly is starring in the 1,500 film
One of the stars of the hit TV comedy Father Ted is appearing in a budget film produced on a shoestring by two students.

Irish actor Frank Kelly, alias Father Jack, agreed to take part after being sent the script for the 10-minute short.

A Day Out With Gwyn is the brainchild of aspiring writer/directors Keri Collins and Paul West, of Cardiff.

Kelly, who plays a grandfather in the film, has been on location in Penarth.

The Dublin-based actor agreed to take part after reading the script and inviting the students over to his home.

"I'm very much in favour of encouraging film-making, if you don't plant the seeds, you don't get plants," said Kelly, in a break from filming.

pic courtesy of Channel Four
Frank Kelly's famous creation - Father Jack

"I receive plenty of scripts - very few are very good," he said.

Despite Kelly's roles in other major movies such as Ryan's Daughter and the Italian Job, he will always be best known to some audiences as the dirty, mad alcoholic Father Jack in the Channel Four comedy.

"I have been stereotyped in many things before, for 12 years I was on a weekly satirical show in Ireland and people would shout things to me - but it gave me huge exposure.

"You owe something to everything you do," he said.

The final scene was shot on Tuesday morning at sunrise on the beach. By lunchtime the film was still on schedule with major scenes being planned involving the four characters.

"It's a coming-of-age film and it's character-based," said Keri, 26, who studies at the University of Wales, Newport.

Frank Kelly and Adam Williams
Frank Kelly and schoolboy Adam Williams play grandad and grandson

"It's based on our experiences of growing up, we know what it's like to be teenage boys," he added.

Adam Williams, 15, and Charlie Bird,16, both from Stanwell School in Penarth, play the youngsters in the film with Carol Ireland playing a grandmother.

Keri said: "We are going to learn a lot from working with someone as experienced as Frank, he has been great, he knows the ins and outs and has given us little tips on how to do something a bit quicker.

"He has instilled confidence in us and he's taken direction easily.

Keri Collins, Frank Kelly and Paul West
Keri Collins and Paul West are Newport film students

The crew, including Keri's mum and dad providing the catering, sheltered in a room next to a chip shop.

And the inevitable delays in filming are not causing Kelly any concern.

"As one actor said - they pay for the waiting, the acting - I give for free," he said.

When completed, the film will be screened at the UGC in Cardiff.

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