TV & Film
Cillian Murphy Toughens Up
Cillian Murphy is hefting a full leather weekend bag and rucksack as he strolls to our lunch in deepest Hackney, London. It’s a signal not only that this least starry of film stars still carries his own luggage, but that, after living here for a decade and a half, he’s no longer a Londoner. He’s just passing through, on the way from his new home in Ireland to Berlin for a film festival.
The Cork-born actor and his wife, artist Ms Yvonne McGuinness, exchanged Queen’s Park NW6 for Dublin in 2015, after deciding it was “time to release a bit of pressure”, he says. “I don’t miss London. There’s only six million people on the whole island of Ireland. It’s just better for your head to have fewer people around, and Irish people are really sound.”
The couple and their sons – Malachy, 11, and Aran, nine – share a Victorian townhouse on the coast south of the Irish capital with a 16-month-old black labrador, whom the boys named Scout after seeing To Kill A Mockingbird. “I’ve always loved labradors,” Mr Murphy says. “They’re so caring and emotionally smart. We walk him on the beach every day. He has the best life.”
Mr Murphy turned 40 last May, and that milestone might have had something to do with his lifestyle taking a more sedate turn. “Most middle-aged men are engaged in some form of self-improvement, like yoga or giving up drinking,” says Mr Murphy, who jogs. “You don’t want to grow old disgracefully, if you can help it.”