Owen is a writer, actor of stage and screen, and stand-up comedian. He has written and performed eight one-man plays and has won a string of awards including three Fringe Firsts at the Edinburgh Festival.
He has also won the Herald Angel award for best play and the Edinburgh Critics Award for best comedy. He has appeared in five feature films including MICHAEL COLLINS directed by Neil Jordan and THE GENERAL directed by John Boorman.In 2009 at the East 59th Street Theatre in New York City he won best actor for his portrayal of NATHAN CASSIDY in his award winning one -man play ABSOLUTION.
‘A white knuckle, emotionally searing piece of theatre’.
The New York Times
His debut feature film ARISE AND GO NOW a dark comedy about priests, pigeons and the IRA was directed by Danny Boyle (Trainspotting.) (Slumdog millionaire) It was screened as part of the BBC Film on 2 series.
‘O’Neill has scored a fine debut. His writing is reminiscent of the plays of Sean O’Casey and the films of John Ford.’
He wrote and directed The Basket Case which was adapted from his short story of the same name published in 2004 by Random House. It won Best Short Film at the 2008 Boston Film Festival and best film at the Fantasia Film Festival in Brazil.
In 2009 he, along with Dave Johns, adapted the SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION for the stage. Owen rewrote it in 2013 for the Edinburgh Festival,
‘Unbearably moving’ ***** The Times
This production has gone through another transformation in a 2015 Bill Kenwright production.
His latest book of Poetry LICKING THE MATCHBOX was published in July 2015
‘He has the turn of phrase of Roddy Doyle and the darkness of Patrick McCabe.’ The Independent
‘O’Neill is never anything less than an excellent intelligent writer.’ The Stage