A Seat Among the Stars: Episode 5

A Seat Among the Stars: Episode 5

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Belfast, Cork, Dublin, Limerick




Production 23/07/1982


26min 37sec




Betacam SP



Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)


Channel 4, Department for Communities, ITV, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

Rights Holder

Channel 4, ITV

It is illegal to download, copy, print or otherwise utilise in any other form this material, without written consent from the copyright holder.


This six-part-series, narrated by Raymond Maxwell, looks back at Ireland's contribution to the film industry and envisions how it might look in the future. 

With the popularity of the television on the horizon, cinema attendance numbers began to decline. Looking back, contributors remember the former picture palaces at their peak, when they could bring in some of the top stars like Bob Hope, Marlene Maxwell and Jerry Desmond, for its variety performances. These shows packed out the theatre, and brought in a new younger audience who wanted to meet the artists and get a taste of the entertainment business.

Former Usherette, Dolores Welshman, recounts how in the 1940's and 1950's the cinema gave a "great means to escape" and that despite hard times, people always managed to keep their penny's to go watch a show. In fact, during it's height traveling cinemas used to tour small towns and villages in Ireland, with local halls being packed full.


An Ulster Television Production for Channel Four

Ulster Television wishes to thank: George Morrison Film Archives, Liam O’Leary Film Archives, British Film Institute, RTE Film and Illustrations Library, Irish Film Board, Irish Film Institute, The Belfast Central Library, The Linenhall Library, Gael-Linn and all the many people who supplied material and contributed to the series.

Produced and Directed by Bob Brian 

Series Adviser: Liam O’Leary

Hollywood Adviser: Anthony Slide

Hollywood Location Manager: Marc Wanamaker 

Stills photography: Kenneth McNally

Titles: Alastair McIlwain

Graphic Design: Michael Williams 

Original Music Composed and Conducted by Noel Kelehan 

Film Cameramen: Blane Scott and Ian MacGregor-White 

Film Sound: Paul Irwin and Trevor O’Connor

Film Editor: Pat Devine

Production Assistant: Alison Johnston 

Production Associate: Raymond Maxwell



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