Hunger (2008)

Hunger 2008tt0986233.jpg poster

  • IMDb page: Hunger (2008)
  • Rate: 7.6/10 total 17,237 votes 
  • Genre: Biography | Drama | History
  • Release Date: 2 October 2008 (Greece)
  • Runtime: 96 min
  • Gross: $154,084(USA)(7 June 2009)
  • Director: Steve McQueen
  • Stars: Stuart Graham, Laine Megaw and Brian Milligan
  • Original Music By: Leo Abrahams  David Holmes   
  • Sound Mix: Dolby Digital
  • Plot Keyword: Hunger | Hunger Strike | Irish | Prison | Body

Writing Credits By:

  • Enda Walsh (written by) and
  • Steve McQueen (written by)

Known Trivia

  • Michael Fassbender had to go on a medically monitored crash diet to portray Bobby Sands, much to the horror of those around him.
  • The scene which features a conversation between Sands and a Catholic priest was filmed in one continuous 16-minute take on the first day of filming in Northern Ireland and took Michael Fassbender and co-star Liam Cunningham four attempts to complete.
  • Contains a 16.5 minute single shot.
  • The second medical attendant (one with mustache) who takes care of Bobby Sands in the hospital, has a ”UDA” tattoo on his left hand. UDA is shortening for Ulster Defence Association, a loyalist paramilitary organization in Northern Ireland.

Plot: Irish republican Bobby Sands leads the inmates of a Northern Irish prison in a hunger strike. Full summary »  »

Story: Hunger follows life in the Maze Prison, Northern Ireland with an interpretation of the highly emotive events surrounding the 1981 IRA Hunger Strike, led by Bobby Sands. With an epic eye for detail, the film provides a timely exploration of what happens when body and mind are pushed to the uttermost limit.Written by Icon  


Synopsis: The film stars Michael Fassbender as Bobby Sands, the Irish Republican activist who led the 1981 Irish hunger strike and participated in the no wash protest in which Republican prisoners tried to win political status. It dramatises events in the Maze prison in the months prior to Sands’ death.

The film opens with prison guard, Raymond Lohan (Stuart Graham) preparing to leave for work; checking under his car for bombs, putting on his uniform in the locker room and ignoring the camaraderie of his colleagues.

Davey (Brian Milligan), a new IRA prisoner, arrives at the gaol. Due to his refusal to wear the prison uniform, he is labeled "non-cooperative." His new roommate, Gerry (Liam McMahon), has smeared the cell with faeces from floor to ceiling and we witness their resistance to the prison regime.

Sands is the final focus of the film. He deeply believes in the cause that he was imprisoned for and in the righteousness of dying for political prisoner status. In one of the film’s most notable scenes Sands debates the morality of the hunger strike with a visiting priest (Liam Cunningham).

{tab=FullCast & Crew}

Produced By:

  • Iain Canning known as executive producer
  • Peter Carlton known as executive producer
  • Edmund Coulthard known as executive producer
  • Robin Gutch known as producer
  • Laura Hastings-Smith known as producer
  • Linda James known as executive producer
  • Andrew Litvin known as line producer
  • Jan Younghusband known as executive producer

FullCast & Crew:

  • Stuart Graham known as Raymond Lohan
  • Laine Megaw known as Raymond's Wife
  • Brian Milligan known as Davey Gillen
  • Liam McMahon known as Gerry Campbell
  • Karen Hassan known as Gerry's Girlfriend
  • Michael Fassbender known as Bobby Sands
  • Frank McCusker known as The Governor
  • Lalor Roddy known as William
  • Helen Madden known as Mrs. Sands
  • Des McAleer known as Mr. Sands
  • Geoff Gatt known as Bearded Man
  • Rory Mullen known as Priest
  • Ben Peel known as Riot Prison Offficer Stephen Graves
  • Helena Bereen known as Raymond's Mother
  • Paddy Jenkins known as Hitman
  • Liam Cunningham known as Father Dominic Moran
  • Billy Clarke known as Chief Medical Officer
  • Ciaran Flynn known as Twelve Year Old Bobby
  • B.J. Hogg known as Loyalist Orderly
  • Larry Cowan known as Prison Guard (uncredited)
  • Denis Halligan known as Naked Prisoner (uncredited)
  • Thomas James Scott known as Riot Officer (uncredited)

..{tab=Supporting Department}Makeup Department:

  • Jacqueline Fowler known as chief hair designer
  • Jacqueline Fowler known as chief makeup designer
  • Cheryl Hill known as hair stylist
  • Cheryl Hill known as makeup artist
  • Judith Laverty known as hair stylist
  • Judith Laverty known as makeup artist
  • Maria Moore known as hair stylist
  • Maria Moore known as makeup artist
  • Alison Rainey known as hair stylist
  • Alison Rainey known as makeup artist
  • Robyn Wheeler known as hair stylist (as Robin Wheeler)
  • Robyn Wheeler known as makeup artist (as Robin Wheeler)
  • Sian Wilson known as hair stylist
  • Sian Wilson known as makeup artist
  • Stuart Conran known as prosthetic technician (uncredited)
  • Dan Frye known as prosthetics technician (uncredited)
  • Vesna Giordano known as silicone prosthetics technician (uncredited)
  • Lisa Hill known as makeup daily (uncredited)
  • Paul Hyett known as special makeup effects artist (uncredited)

Art Department:

  • Antony Buonomo known as graphic artist
  • Diarmid Carr known as dressing props
  • David Carson known as dressing props
  • Paul Cooke known as plasterer
  • Cole Doherty known as construction manager
  • Hugh Gault known as carpenter
  • Neville Gaynor known as scenic artist
  • Heather Greenlees known as assistant art director
  • Tommy Hilland known as painter
  • Colin Holmes known as dressing props
  • Rebecca Luckley known as art department runner
  • Daniel Lyons known as standby painter (as Danny Lyons)
  • Frank Matthews known as plasterer
  • Anto McCabe known as plasterer
  • Thomas McCann known as plasterer
  • Stuart McConnaughie known as carpenter
  • Dan McCoy known as painter
  • Pat McKane known as standby props
  • Kieron Mcnamara known as standby props
  • Alan Nixon known as standby carpenter
  • Jim Reid known as construction manager
  • Patsy Smith known as plasterer
  • Sarah Speers known as props buyer
  • Steve Wheeler known as property master
  • McNally Neil known as props (uncredited)


Production Companies:

  • Film4 (presents)
  • Channel Four Film (as Channel 4) (presents)
  • Northern Ireland Screen (in association with) (presents)
  • Broadcasting Commission of Ireland (in association with) (presents)
  • Wales Creative IP Fund (in association with) (presents)
  • Blast! Films
  • Sound & Vision Broadcasting Funding Scheme (with the support of)

Other Companies:

  • ARRI Lighting Rental  electrical equipment (as ARRI Rntal)
  • ARRI Media  camera equipment
  • BBC Motion Gallery  archive
  • Capello Media Solutions  negative check
  • Clarity Post Production Sound  foley
  • Clarity Post Production Sound  recording
  • Comber Commercial  vehicles
  • Courier City Air Express  rushes
  • Dolby Laboratories  sound mix
  • Dragon Digital Intermediate  digital intermediate
  • Drama, Belfast  music recorded and mixed at
  • Eastside Communications  publicity: Germany
  • En Route Catering  catering (as EnRoute Catering)
  • Extras NI  extras casting
  • Fuji Photo Film  motion picture film supplied by
  • Fuji  film stock
  • G & H Film & Television Services  transport and facilities (as G & H Services)
  • Go Truck  vehicles
  • Goldcard Security Agency  location security (as Gold Card Security)
  • Gripstep  grip equipment
  • Lee & Thompson  legal services: legal services: Wales Creaive IP Fund
  • Lee & Thompson  production lawyers
  • Mayflower Studios  ADR recording studio
  • Media Insurance Brokers  insurance services
  • Michael Corish Productions  epk
  • National Film Trustee Company  collection account
  • North Irish Driver  safety boat
  • PS-PostScript  post-production script service
  • Paul Davies Sound Design  sound design
  • Paul Davies Sound Design  sound editing
  • Shipleys  auditing
  • Shoot NI  walkie talkies
  • Simply Good Food  catering
  • Stranmillis Taxis  taxis
  • The Yard  editing facilities
  • Wellington Park Hotel  hotel
  • Yellowmoon  editing facilities (as Yellow Moon)


  • Fugo Film (2009) (Germany) (theatrical)
  • IFC Films (2009) (USA) (theatrical)
  • Mantarraya Producciones (2010) (Mexico) (theatrical)
  • Maple Pictures (2009) (Canada) (theatrical)
  • Mozinet (2010) (Hungary) (theatrical) (Hungary)
  • Paradiso Entertainment (2008) (Netherlands) (theatrical)
  • Paradiso (2008) (Luxembourg) (theatrical)
  • Paradiso (2009) (Belgium) (theatrical)
  • Ascot Elite Home Entertainment (2009) (Germany) (DVD)
  • Atlantic Film (2009) (Finland) (DVD)
  • Channel Four Films (2008) (UK) (TV)
  • Criterion Collection, The (2010) (USA) (DVD)
  • Criterion Collection, The (2010) (USA) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • Film1 (2009) (Netherlands) (TV) (limited)
  • Icon Film Distribution (2008) (Australia) (all media)
  • Icon Film Distribution (2008) (UK) (all media) (except TV)
  • Icon Film Distribution (2008) (New Zealand) (all media)
  • MK2 Diffusion (2008) (France) (all media)
  • Maple Pictures (2009) (Canada) (DVD)
  • Paradiso Home Entertainment (2009) (Netherlands) (DVD)
  • Seven Films (2009) (Greece) (all media)

..{tab=Other Stuff}

Special Effects:

  • Dragon Digital Intermediate (visual effects)
  • Bob Smoke Special Effects (special effects)

Visual Effects by:

  • James Ballard known as production executive: Dragon DI
  • Valentina Catena known as digital grading assistant: Dragon DI
  • Michele De Benedetti known as film scanning and clean-up: Dragon DI
  • Myfanwy Harris known as visual effects artist: Dragon DI
  • Paul J. Wright known as film scanning and recording manager: Dragon DI

Release Date:

  • France 15 May 2008 (Cannes Film Festival)
  • Australia 7 June 2008 (Sydney Film Festival)
  • Canada 6 September 2008 (Toronto International Film Festival)
  • Spain 22 September 2008 (Donostia-San Sebastian International Film Festival)
  • Greece 24 September 2008 (Athens Film Festival)
  • Brazil 26 September 2008 (Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival)
  • USA 27 September 2008 (New York Film Festival)
  • Greece 2 October 2008
  • South Korea 5 October 2008 (Pusan International Film Festival)
  • Netherlands 9 October 2008
  • Belgium 14 October 2008 (Gent International Film Festival)
  • USA 19 October 2008 (Chicago International Film Festival)
  • Japan 21 October 2008 (Tokyo International Film Festival)
  • Ireland 31 October 2008
  • UK 31 October 2008
  • Denmark 7 November 2008 (CPHDOX Festival)
  • Belgium 12 November 2008
  • Norway 25 November 2008 (Oslo International Film Festival)
  • France 26 November 2008
  • Italy 27 November 2008 (Turin Film Festival)
  • Estonia 3 December 2008 (Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival)
  • Portugal 4 December 2008
  • USA 5 December 2008 (limited)
  • Croatia 7 January 2009
  • UK 23 February 2009 (DVD premiere)
  • Turkey 20 March 2009
  • Norway 27 March 2009
  • Hungary 28 March 2009 (Titanic International Filmpresence Festival)
  • Argentina 31 March 2009 (Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema)
  • Sweden 3 April 2009
  • Hong Kong 8 April 2009 (Hong Kong International Film Festival)
  • Canada 10 April 2009 (Toronto)
  • Iceland 17 April 2009 (Green Light Film Festival)
  • Spain 27 April 2009 (Tarragona International Film Festival)
  • Spain 12 May 2009 (Barcelona)
  • Denmark 20 May 2009
  • Finland 10 June 2009 (Midnight Sun Film Festival)
  • Germany 11 June 2009 (Emden Film Festival)
  • Poland 24 July 2009 (Era New Horizons Film Festival)
  • Germany 13 August 2009
  • Finland 22 August 2009 (Espoo Film Festival)
  • Finland 23 September 2009 (DVD premiere)
  • Poland 8 January 2010
  • Hungary 4 March 2010
  • Switzerland 18 March 2010 (German speaking region)
  • Austria 4 June 2010 (limited)
  • Mexico 10 September 2010


Filmography links and data courtesy of The Internet Movie Database

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