'Wed' Carpet | 

Oscar winner James Martin lands massive new role... as his brother’s best man

Fun-loving actor James promises not to upstage brother in next role at wedding

James Martin with Bafta and Oscar in hand

James with Roisin Gorman and director Ross White

James is welcomed home by tearful dad Ivan Martin

Roisin GormanSunday World

Oscar winner James Martin’s next big role is closer to home — as best man for brother Daniel.

The Belfast actor, who was centre of attention at the Academy Awards, has promised not to steal the show when his little brother weds fiancée Rachel Skillen next month.

And he wants to dedicate his Oscar and Bafta success in An Irish Goodbye to the happy couple.

“It’s my brother’s day and I’m dedicating the two awards to them,” says James.

“I’m going to be a best man for the first time, and I’ll be making a speech and it’s going to be funny.”

James is welcomed home by tearful dad Ivan Martin

James and his leopard print jacket became the star of the show at the glittering ceremony in LA last Sunday after the film won the best short category.

When the writing and directing team Ross White and Tom Berkeley and co-star Seamus O’Hara used their 45 seconds on stage to sing happy birthday to him, the entire A-list audience joined in and the moment went viral.

“The timing of it was just perfect, especially on the day itself – not even picking up an Oscar but singing happy birthday. It means so much,” says James.

'Hollywood' sings happy birthday to James Martin as An Irish Goodbye picks up Oscar

“People were coming up to me in LA saying, ‘well done on the movie’, and the jacket was a big hit.”

After partying at the Baftas in London with The Banshees of Inisherin stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson, he made a few more famous friends at the Vanity Fair afterparty in LA.

“I met Dwayne Johnson, James Corden, Graham Norton, Jamie Lee Curtis. She’s a nice person and I had a nice conversation with her. She was emotional about winning an Oscar and I calmed her down,” he says.

James with Roisin Gorman and director Ross White

“The best bit was my birthday. It was the best day of my life. You couldn’t plan that.”

The winners got a heroes’ welcome when they flew into Dublin on Thursday and were whisked home to Belfast for an NI Screen party in the Grand Central Hotel.

On Friday they were back in Dublin for a celebration with President Michael D Higgins, before an appearance on The Late Late Show and VIP treatment at Ireland’s Six Nations game against England in the Aviva Stadium yesterday.

Speaking ahead of his whirlwind weekend, James was ready for action.

“I’m a talker, so I hope Michael D is ready!” he joked. “I feel like I’ve got the best job in the world at the minute.”

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