Brad Pitt film scares my chickens


Livestock including cattle, hens and horses were “terrified” by what sounded “like a war going on” during filming of a Hollywood movie.

The film, lost City of Z, is being shot on location near Ballygally by Brad Pitt’s production company, plan B.

Last week, the Larne Times web site featured a video of the set, showing scenes for the movie, which stars Sienna Miller, Robert Pattinson and Charlie Hunnam.

Since then, local residents have shared pictures of explosions at the location, as well as fires billowing smoke.

Feystown Road resident Jason McKillion told the Times that livestock had been “terrified” by the noise.

“It started last Monday (September 14) with bangs, gunfire and small explosions. Then on Tuesday the bigger explosions started,” he said.

“The explosions shook the house and windows and the boom echoed through the glen.

“My neighbour’s horses were in the field near the film set and they went spare, trying to jump the ditches.

“On Wednesday, there was another explosion and my animals went daft. The chickens were squawking and the dog was outside, barking and shaking.

“I went to Larne and when I came back the dog was shivering under a chair and the hens had all gone. Then I heard there had been another explosion while I was out.

“I was sitting outside and the chickens had just come back when there was another explosion, even louder than the last. Another neighbour’s cow and calf jumped the hedge and the cows were bellowing in fear.

“On Friday morning, it sounded like a war was going on, and later there was another explosion. My neighbour was feeding bulls in the field when it happened. They stampeded and knocked him and the feeding trough over.”

Jason said he believes residents should have been notified in advance in order to care for their livestock.

“There wasn’t a single notification about this, which would have been common courtesy,” he claimed. “I support companies filming here, but they need to keep local people in the loop.

“If we had a schedule, we could put the animals into barns. At the minute we are on tenterhooks.”

Jason said he and neighbours were not aware there was to be filming in the area until news of it appeared on Facebook. He added: “It’s great they are filming here: it’s just the disruption it has caused, and we know nothing about it.”

He added: “It’s totally agricultural here, totally tranquil. There’s never a sound and that makes it more disruptive as the animals aren’t used to the noise and they just went hysterical.

“This is supposed to be an area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB) and tranquillity.

“It was madness for a week and we don’t know if filming is finished yet.”

An NI Screen spokeswoman said that she would contact the film’s production team and LA publicist over the concerns.