Paul Mescal, Jessie Buckley and Aisling Franciosi among Irish BIFA nominees

Paul Mescal, Jessie Buckley and Aisling Franciosi among Irish BIFA nominees

IRISH ACTORS Paul Mescal, Jessie Buckley, Aisling Franciosi and Daryl McCormack are among those who have been nominated for the British Independent Film Awards (BIFAs) in its first year with gender-neutral acting categories.

As part of the organisation's 25th anniversary, the body has made the move to award five acting accolades with no mention of "actor" or "actress" as well as adding a selection of new performance awards.

Scottish director Charlotte Wells’ feature debut Aftersun about a father and daughter’s complex relationship explored through a holiday they take in Turkey leads the nominations with 16 nods.

Normal People star Mescal, who plays Calum, and Frankie Corio, who plays his daughter Sophie, have both received a nod in the Best Joint Lead Performance category.

They will battle it out against Emma Thompson and Tipperary native Daryl McCormack for Good Luck To You, Leo Grande; Killarney-born Jessie Buckley and Rory Kinnear for Men, and Tamara Lawrance and Letitia Wright for The Silent Twins.

Paul Mescal also receives a nomination for Best Supporting Performance in God's Creatures (which was filmed in Donegal), as does his co-star Aisling Franciosi from Dublin.

The Wonder, starring Florence Pugh, which was also filmed in Ireland, receives a total of 12 nominations, including for Best British Independent Film, Best Screenplay and Best Lead Performance or Pugh.

The nominations were announced on Friday by the ceremony’s hosts Sam Claflin and BIFA winner Kosar Ali.

In July, the organisation announced the new gender-neutral performance categories were: Best Lead Performance, Best Supporting Performance, Best Joint Lead performance for two (or exceptionally three) performances that are the joint focus of the film, and Best Ensemble.

Winners will be announced at the BIFA Award ceremony on Sunday 4 December.