Actor and Producer Jack Mulcahy, who played Jack McMullen in the 1995 independent film classic, “The Brothers McMullen,”, says he landed the role thanks, in part, to his love of baseball.
“If you like playing ball with somebody, you’ll probably like working with them.”
In the early 1990s, Mulcahy and Director Edward Burns were teammates on a team in the Performing Arts Softball League in New York City. At the time, Burns was working on the project that would become The Brothers McMullen.
“Ed was on the team and he played about three or four games. And then he just, you know, didn’t show up. I guess he was working on the script,” Mulcahy explained to host Shaun Clancy on a recent episode of “Craic and the Bat” on Irish Baseball TV. Eventually, Burns re-appeared with a finished script and, “‘He said, I’ve got this thing. It’s about three Irish American brothers.’ And we started talking… at the end of the night, we’re drunk and shooting darts and we’re like ‘We’re gonna make the greatest movie ever!'”
The film went on to win the Grand Jury Prize at the 1995 Sundance Film Festival and it grossed $10 million, making it one of the most successful independent films of the decade.
The wide-ranging interview also covered Mulcahy’s Irish roots, his memories of filming The Brothers McMullen and his lifelong love of the New York Yankees.
A Lifelong Yankees Fan
Growing up in New York, baseball has been a big part of Mulcahy’s life for as long as he can remember. “The first game that I ever remember, was Casey Stengel 70th birthday in Yankee Stadium — in the old Yankee Stadium. I remember remarking to my mom, because they brought up a cake with 70 candles, and I was like,’Oh my God, that’s alot of candles,'” Mulcahy recalled. “And so, over the years, I’ve been at the Reggie three home run game. There was a period from ’76 until ’81, where I did not miss a playoff or a World Series game with the Yankees.”
Mulcahy also revealed details of his latest project, “Girl Boxer.” The film, directed by Lauren McCann, is set in Queens, NY and Ireland. “It’s about a woman who’s on hard times and she has a beautiful little child. And she has to take a job in a bar, which I own, but I’m a former IRA member,” he explained.
The film was originally released as a short film and it has already won 25 awards at film festivals around the world. Mulcahy revealed that McCann is now expanding the film into a feature-length project. “Just two weeks ago, over Irish soda bread, she and I finished the final feature script, we’ve got 102 pages of really, really tight stuff,” he revealed.