Weekend Q&A: Film Hub NI's Sara Gunn-Smith on badgering Brad Pitt about Oasis

Sara Gunn-Smith is Film Hub Northern Ireland's marketing and audiences officer, and co-hosts the Moving Pictures podcast with Hugh Odling-Smee

Sara Gunn-Smith's voice-coach dad worked with film stars on major movies. Picture by Darren Kidd
Jane Hardy

How do you unwind at the weekend?

It's very different post-Covid. Because of needing a bigger house as we're working from home, we're finishing off a renovation of our new 1960s house. Apart from that, I go out on a lot of walks round the Ormeau, Shaw's Bridge and Belvoir Forest areas in south Belfast. I put on the trainers and go with some friends and my two kids and we're so busy talking, a couple of hours go by. I also go up the Cregagh Glen. It's good considering we're not getting a lot of exercise. There is a bit of light about now too.

What do you recall most about weekends growing up?

I've always lived near the Ormeau Road – Holylands, North Parade then Rosetta, and when I was a kid, I spent time with my cousins. I'd go places with my parents as I was an only child until I was 12. One granny took me to the Ulster Museum as I was obsessed with dinosaurs. I visited my other grandparents in Killyleagh. My father, a voice coach, worked on the Michael Collins movie and I remember hearing 'de Valera' make his big speech in the crowd. Irish film is a passion to this day. I don't like dropping names but I also met Brad Pitt who stayed at our house for a bit. My brother Andy was a toddler and they played on the floor. But all I was interested in, as I was obsessed with Oasis, was whether he'd met Liam Gallagher.

Friday night or Saturday night?

Fridays. I work a four-day week and Friday afternoons are sacrosanct. I pick up Rudy (9) and Nancy (7) and we might go for an ice cream. Friday night's relaxed with a bottle of wine and a film.

What's your must-listen-to weekend radio show?

Nothing specific but Radio Six is on constantly in our house as my husband Craig and I are big music fans.

Must-watch TV weekend show or box set?

We're enjoying The Queen's Gambit and are now watching The Terror. The voice coach with Jared Harris was my dad.

Favourite eatery – or is it a takeaway?

Before all the Covid stuff, Craig and I were big fans of Danny Millar's place, Stock. We've had takeaways from there, also from Mourne Seafood Bar.

Is Sunday still special?

Sunday's a nice quiet day. In normal times we take the kids out on their bikes and go for a coffee.

How do you feel on Sunday night about Monday morning?

I don't have that 'Have I done my homework?' feeling as I'm very lucky and absolutely love my job. On Sunday evening, I'm looking for uniforms and snack boxes and getting ready for the week ahead. We're pretty organised with the podcast which is aimed at the creative industries so I'm not making notes then.

The Moving Pictures podcast is available via the Film Hub NI website,

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