Know the Cast: ‘Belfast’

Belfast Cast - Every Performer and Character in the 2021 Movie

The Belfast cast features Caitríona Balfe, Judi Dench and Jamie Dornan. This info article contains minor spoilers and character details for Kenneth Branagh’s 2021 movie. Check out more streaming guides in Vague Visages’ Know the Cast section.

Belfast follows a family in Northern Ireland during The Troubles of the late 60s. A nine-year boy named Buddy enjoys himself in the neighborhood while observing the behavior of his mother, father and brother. Meanwhile, the young protagonist’s grandparents offer advice as local Protestants argue with Catholics. Here’s every main performer and character in Belfast.

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Belfast Cast: Jude Hill as Buddy

Belfast Cast - Jude Hill as Buddy

Character Profile: A nine-year-old who loves movies. He tries to impress his teacher and has a crush on a Catholic girl named Catherine. Buddy doesn’t want to leave Belfast but realizes that it might be best for his family.

Hill’s Resume: Movie Debut in Belfast, Sam Blakiston in Magpie Murders (2022)

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Belfast Cast: Caitríona Balfe as Ma

Belfast Cast - Caitríona Balfe as Ma

Character Profile: Buddy’s mother. She worries about back tax problems and the safety of her children. Ma looks after her family as her husband occasionally leaves to work in England.

Balfe’s Resume: Elizabeth Lamb in Super 8 (2011), Jessica Miller in Escape Plan (2013), Claire Randall in Outlander (2014-), Mollie Miles in Ford v Ferarri (2019), Tavra in The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (2019)

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Belfast Cast: Judi Dench as Granny

Belfast Cast - Judi Dench as Granny

Character Profile: Buddy’s grandmother. She is the “best friend” of an Indian woman in the streets. Granny knows that she’ll likely never leave Belfast.

Dench’s Resume: M in the James Bond Movie Franchise (1995-2015), Queen Elizabeth in Shakespeare in Love (1998), Barbara Covett in Notes on a Scandal (2006), Philomena Lee in Philomena (2013), Princess Dragomiroff in Murder on the Orient Express (2017)

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Belfast Cast: Jamie Dornan as Pa

Belfast Cast - Jamie Dornan as Pa

Character Profile: Buddy’s Protestant father. He believes that Catholicism is “a religion of fear.” Pa dreams of building a new life elsewhere with his family while dealing with local threats.

Dornan’s Resume: Count Axel Fersen in Marie Antoinette (2006), Paul Spector in The Fall (2013-16), Christian Grey in the Fifty Shades Trilogy (2015-18), Paul Conroy in A Private War (2018), Edgar Pagét in Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar (2021)

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Belfast Cast: Ciarán Hinds as Pop

Belfast Cast - Ciarán Hinds as Pop

Character Profile: Buddy’s grandfather and Granny’s husband. He’s a jolly gentleman who used to be a coal miner in Leicester. Pop believes in patience and has significant health issues.

Hinds’ Resume: Gaius Julius Caesar in Rome (2005-07), Roy Bland in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), Aberforth Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011), John Franklin in The Terror (2018), Eamon Cunningham in Kin (2021)

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Belfast Cast: Colin Morgan as Billy Clanton

Belfast Cast - Colin Morgan as Billy Clanton

Character Profile: A local Protestant. He leads a rebellion in the streets and targets Catholics. Billy challenges Pa to join the cause.

Morgan’s Resume: Merlin in Merlin (2008-12), Tom Anderson in The Fall (2014-16), Victor Richardson in Testament of Youth (2014), Frank Shea in Legend (2015), John Armstrong in The Crown (2019)

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The Belfast cast also includes:

  • Lewis McAskie (Here Before, Ted’s Top Ten)
  • Lara McDonnell (Love, Rosie, Artemis Fowl)
  • Olive Tennant (movie debut)
  • Gerard Horan (Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Beauty and the Beast)
  • Josie Walker (Holby City, This Is Going to Hurt)

Q.V. Hough (@QVHough) is Vague Visages’ founding editor.