‘Pixie’ is an Irish crime caper comedy written and directed by father-son duo Preston and Barnaby Thompson, respectively. Olivia Cooke stars as the titular character – a young girl who sets out to avenge her mother’s death. Things go wrong, and soon enough she finds herself on the run in the gorgeous windswept Irish countryside. Frank (Ben Hardy) and Harland (Daryl McCormack) become reluctant accomplices and the ensemble is further bolstered by comedic veterans Colm Meaney and Alec Baldwin, who plays a gun-toting, drug dealing priest. The grimy caper violence which ensues, against a backdrop of breathtaking natural landscapes makes the whole affair a feast for the eyes. Want to know where ‘Pixie’ was filmed? We’ve got you covered!
Pixie Filming Locations
‘Pixie’ was filmed in multiple locations within Ireland around the end of summer 2020. The movie received funding support from the Northern Ireland Screen Agency and shot for seven weeks in and around Belfast. Additional filming of outdoor panoramic scenes featuring the Irish countryside was done in Sligo County and Mayo County in Western Ireland. Let’s dive in and look at these locations in detail.
The film and its makers are both influenced by British and Irish crime capers, which generally feature urban as well as small-town settings as backdrops for their signature action scenes. Many small towns and villages around Belfast are featured in the film as the characters make their way through the countryside. These include Feystown Church and Lough Road in Glenarm, St. Mary’s Church and Londonderry Arms Hotel in Carnlough, the University of Ulster in Jordanstown, and Starbog Road and Shane’s Hill Road in Larne.
Locations used within the city include Cooke Centenary Church, the Menagerie Nightclub, the Old Chapel on 348 Ormeau Road, and the famous 19th-century Telegraph Building. In addition to the urban sprawl that offered multiple city locations, what was useful about filming in Belfast, according to Barnaby, is its proximity to the coastal countryside.
Apart from the spectacular Tyrella Beach, multiple scenes of the film have been shot along the A2 highway just north of Belfast, featuring mountains on one side and the jagged Irish coast on the other. This is also the location where the hugely popular medieval fantasy series ‘Game of Thrones’ was regularly filmed.
The writer Preston Thompson was enamored by the landscape of Western Ireland during a trip to Sligo with his father, Barnaby. The story takes inspiration from elsewhere, but the setting was completely inspired by this trip. The filmmakers’ connection with this location goes even deeper as the director spent considerable time in Western Ireland, even shooting his first few documentaries there.
Preston is far from the first person to be inspired by Sligo county, which is the area surrounding the city of Sligo. Apart from the landscape, Sligo County is also home to a large variety of monolithic monuments that have inspired artists and writers for centuries. Nobel Laureate poet William Butler Yeats spent much of his childhood in northern Sligo and once stated, “the place that has really influenced my life most is Sligo.” Hence, Sligo county is affectionately known as Yeats County.
County Mayo, Ireland
The final scene of the movie is set and shot in the Ireland West Airport Knock, located in neighboring Mayo County and the closest international airport to Sligo. This was also the airport that the filmmakers used whenever they traveled to Ireland, and Preston hinted in one of his interviews that he was glad he could include it in the movie. Some might say the airport is especially symbolic as it marks the conclusion of the protagonist’s heist that initially goes awry and sets off the sequence of events that the movie follows.
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