Former U2 manager sees red over Limerick studio plans

Alan Owens

Reporter:

Alan Owens

Former U2 manager Paul McGuinness is considering legal action
A SPOKESPERSON for Troy Studios has declined to comment on reports that former U2 manager Paul McGuinness is considering legal action over the foundation of the Limerick studio.

A SPOKESPERSON for Troy Studios has declined to comment on reports that former U2 manager Paul McGuinness is considering legal action over the foundation of the Limerick studio.

Mr McGuinness is a key investor in Ardmore Studios and is reported to have expressed “considerable disquiet” at plans for the key players in the Wicklow studio to set up the Limerick project, which would be in direct competition with Ardmore as a result.

The directors of Troy Studios Limited are Ardmore CEO Siún Ní Raghallaigh and Ossie Kilkenny - a joint owner of the Bray-based studio - and producer and John Kelleher.

Mr Kilkenny is also a former accountant for U2.

Mr McGuinness is not involved in the Limerick project, for which the City and County Council bought the old Dell building in Castletroy for €6m and signed an agreement with Troy for the purposes of developing the Mid-West’s first film and television production hub. Production is expected to start in 2016.

According to a report in the Sunday Business Post, Mr McGuinness has “reservations about the project” and is considering legal action.

“Your chief executive emerging as founder and shareholder in a rival studio is, understandably, a matter of some concern,” an industry source told the Sunday paper.

A spokesperson for Troy told the Limerick Leader that there was “no comment” in response to the reports.

Ms Ní Raghallaigh said at the time of the announcement at the end of July that the studio would “place Limerick on the international map as a new film location”, adding 70,000 sq feet of studio space to the 110,000 that currently exists.

The intention is for Troy Studios to be a fully-fledged leading studio facility by the end of 2016, the council and the studio said at the time, possibly creating upwards of 750 jobs and a commercial spin-off to the local economy of €70m, Conn Murray, CEO of the City and County Council has claimed.