IRISH BAD BOY COLIN FARRELL IS FULL OF BLARNEY!

Published on: November 11, 2002

"Minority Report" hunk Colin Farrell likes to portray himself as a hard-drinking, working-class Irish bad boy who got kicked out of school -- but friends back in Ireland say that's all blarney!

Sources in Dublin told The ENQUIRER the 26-year-old actor -- who also starred with Bruce Willis in "Hart's War" -- actually went to one of Ireland's leading private boarding schools for privileged kids, Castleknock College, where he wore a proper blue blazer and gray trousers.

"He might portray himself now as this Irish rebel, but there was nothing rebellious about him when he was in school," former classmate Ritchie Molloy told The ENQUIRER.

"He was just an ordinary schoolkid like the rest of us.

"And he certainly never got kicked out of school because he never got in any trouble."

And despite claims that Farrell has been involved in barroom brawls, Jason O'Callaghan, gossip columnist for the Irish Sunday Independent, told The ENQUIRER: "I've hung out with him in bars drinking, but he's never been in any fights.

"When he does all his interviews in America, he pretends he's from a tough, working-class part of Dublin.

"The truth is that he's from Castleknock, which is the very respectable, upper-class part of Dublin. That's where all the rich people in the city live.

"He's said in an interview that he was thrown out of school. But it isn't true. He made it up.

"He wants people to think he's this hard-drinking rebel cut in the mold of Richard Burton and Richard Harris. He thinks it'll be better for his image.

"All he's really doing is following a long line of Irish storytellers. He's certainly got a gift for gab, I'll say that about him."

He also has a gift for landing roles with big-name stars. In addition to Willis and his "Minority Report" co-star Tom Cruise, he'll be seen next year with Al Pacino in "The Recruit." And he's just signed to star in the movie remake of the 1970's TV cop show "S.W.A.T." with Samuel L. Jackson -- for $8 million.

Steven Spielberg, who directed him in "Minority Report," was so impressed that he predicted he'll be "the next big movie star."

Farrell grew up in Dublin, one of four children. His father Eamonn was a professional soccer player. He's now a successful businessman running a health food store in Dublin.

The budding star has also claimed that after his teachers told him he'd never amount to anything, he packed his bags and spent a year in Australia, where he supported himself waiting tables.

"He did go to Australia. That's true," said Molloy.

"But the teachers never said he wouldn't amount to anything. I would have known about that because I was in his class. As a matter of fact, he did quite well in school, but I guess he doesn't want you to know that."

On his return from Australia, Farrell went to drama school in Dublin. He got his big break when he appeared in a London stage play and was spotted by Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey. He and Farrell made an Irish gangster movie called "Ordinary Decent Criminal."

Farrell married English actress Amelia Warner in July 2001. They separated four months later.

Today when he isn't making movies in America, Farrell flies back to Dublin, where he maintains a home, and frequents a bar called Renards, a favorite watering hole for Irish rockers like Bono of U2 fame.

"He's certainly a big drinker," O'Callaghan added, "but he's never gotten in any fights as far as I know -- he's not that type."