- Bloomsday commemorates the life and work of James Joyce. Its date, June 16, coincides with the day that the events of his novel Ulysses takes place.
- James Joyce was an early patron of cinema! He founded Ireland’s first cinema, Cinematograph Volta, which opened in 1909. It was demolished in 1948 and long thought forgotten by history, but a memorial plaque was eventually unviled in 2007 marking the theatre site.
- The 1987 adaptation of his short story ‘The Dead’ (screening at Triskel Christchurch Tue 14 June) was the final film by legendary filmmaker and actor John Huston. A passion project of Huston’s, he directed the film while wheelchair bound and connected to an oxygen tank.
- Joyce was rather famously associated with another celebrated Irish writer, Samuel Beckett. Joyce dictated parts of Finnegan’s Wake to Beckett, and Beckett wrote an essay on Joyce titled ‘?’.
- The 1967 Adaptation of Ulysses (playing at Triskel Christchurch Sun 12 June) is contested for being the first ever movie to drop the f-bomb. It is contested with the movie I’ll Never Forget for the honour, both released in 1967.
- Ulysses (1967 movie) was also not officially released in Ireland until 2000, though it was played in secret in the Irish Film Theatre throughout the 90s.
- Joyce had a rather infamous dinner party with Marcel Proust in 1922, where the two literary legends discussed their ailments and not having read each other’s work.
- Correspondent letters to his wife Nora revealed some peculiar interests of the Dublin writer…more info here
- Joyce is a well-recorded music lover, and struck a friendship with Tenor John McCormack, a friendship explored in the Cork film Shem the Penman Sings Again (playing Triskel Christchurch Thu 16 June). McCormack encouraged Joyce to take part in the Feis Ceoil in 1904, which he won the bronze medal in.
- Joyce gave us the word ‘quark’, the word for an elementary particle. It was taken from Finnegan’s Wake.
Compiled by Daniel Kiniry
Images are stills from Shem the Penman Sings Again
Credit 1 & 2: Karol Kaczmarczyk, Credit 3: Amanda Ferriter