UK

Mrs. Brown’s Boys’ Fiona O’Carroll splits from husband Martin Delany after 15-years of marriage

Mrs. Brown’s Boys’ Fiona O’Carroll has announced her separation from husband and co-star Martin Delany after 15-years of marriage. 

Speaking to RTE, the actress, 41 – best known for her role as Maria Brown on the popular but maligned sitcom – claimed they had ‘grown apart’ and insisted the split was a mutual decision. 

She said: ‘Myself and Martin met very young. I was 16, and I suppose he’s all I’ve ever known and we just kind of grew apart.

‘We wanted different things. I still have a lot of love for him and I only want the best for him and I think he feels the same way about me.’

The split is the latest blow to the BBC sitcom which has suffered criticism from critics, disputes over pay from stars and fan anger after some actors were named in the Paradise Papers for tax avoidance. 

In one particularly scathing review of Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie, a critic for Empire wrote: ‘Almost avant garde in its commitment to unfunny, it’s shambolically performed by the majority of its cast, and shot and edited in a fashion so slapdash it seems like a movie made almost entirely by competition winners.’ 

All over: Mrs. Brown’s Boys’ Fiona O’Carroll has announced her separation from husband and co-star Martin Delany after 15-years of marriage

This graphic demonstrates how a scheme helped Mrs Brown's Boys actors to avoid paying tax

This graphic demonstrates how a scheme helped Mrs Brown’s Boys actors to avoid paying tax 

In 2017, it was revealed that Mrs Brown’s Boys creator Brendan O’Carroll and his family had purchased seven homes in the sunny state of Florida.

The revelation came after three stars of the BBC sitcom were identified as using a complicated web of offshore companies and trusts to avoid paying tax on their earnings, according to the Paradise Papers.

Newly divorced couple Martin and Fiona were named, as was co-star Patrick Houilhan. 

They are said to have diverted over £2m of their earnings into companies based in Mauritius, before getting the cash sent back, purportedly as loans.

Three homes, worth £280,000 and £240,000, were found to be registered to Mr O’Carroll and his wife, fellow Mrs Brown’s Boys actress Jennifer, 53.

A fourth, worth £280,000, was registered to Fiona, 37, and Martin, 44. 

The final two are in the names of Brendan’s sons Eric and Danny.

It was also found that Mr and Mrs Delany allowed some of their money to be transferred into a Mauritian trust before it was eventually ‘loaned’ back to them, according to the BBC’s Panorama.    

The suspicion is the ‘loans’ are artificially created with the purpose of avoiding tax, and that none of them were ever repaid, meaning they were in effect a form of income and so should have been taxed.

According to the leaked documents, dubbed the ‘Paradise Papers’, which expose how the rich and powerful shield their wealth offshore, accountant Roy Lyness was involved in setting up meetings which led to the actors participating in the scheme.

Mr Lyness was also behind the controversial K2 scheme, which in 2012 was discovered to be allowing thousands of the super-rich to pay as little as 1 per cent income tax, sheltering as much as £168m in Jersey.

Furious license fee payers later called for the BBC to axe Mrs Brown’s Boys amid the revelation some of its stars are part of a tax avoidance scheme.

Life imitating art: The couple play Maria and Trevor Brown in Mrs. Brown's Boys

Life imitating art: The couple play Maria and Trevor Brown in Mrs. Brown’s Boys 

Mrs Brown's Boys creator Brendan O'Carroll and his family own six adjacent properties on a street in Davenport in the state of Florida (pictured)

Mrs Brown’s Boys creator Brendan O’Carroll and his family own six adjacent properties on a street in Davenport in the state of Florida (pictured)

The show also came under scrutiny last year after it was slammed for its backstage politics when two of its actors reportedly quit amid a pay gap dispute.

The actors in question – Damien McKiernan and Gary Hollywood, who play couple Dino and Rory – are said to have discovered they earn less than the rest of the cast – which is largely made up of star Brendan O’Carroll’s family.

And an insider exclusively told MailOnline on Monday that the way the show is run behind-the-scenes makes for an unhappy work environment.

‘The show is very Upstairs/Downstairs, with a very clear divide between Brendan’s family and the few actual actors such as Gary and Damien,’ the insider said.

‘The family are all directors of the Mrs Brown’s production company and are always looked after.

‘The BBC let Brendan do whatever he wants!’

O’Carroll’s wife, his sister Eilish, his son Danny and Fiona, have all appeared on the series.

Although he has not disclosed his salary from the show, O’Carroll’s net worth was last calculated in 2013 when it was an astounding £9.98 million / €11 million.

In 2017, however, the stars of the show revealed how they were in debt in the early runs. But in 2019 it was reported that profits at a Brendan O’Carroll entertainment company almost doubled to £584,311 / €643,876 the year before.

The Irish Times reported then that accounts filed by BOC-PIX Ltd show O’Carroll and his wife, Jennifer Gibney, had garnered almost €2 million in dividends from the company over 2017-2018.

O’Carroll also makes much of his income from touring. 

She added: ‘There were no major fights, and nobody else was involved but it was a case of not being on the same page any longer.’ 

Fiona – the real life daughter of Mrs. Brown’s Boys creator Brendan O’Carroll – admitted she persevered with the marriage after watching her own parents divorce in 1999. 

‘I think I hung on for as long as I did because when my own parents broke up, that was very public, and there was a lot of hurt involved there,’ she added. 

The couple married in 2006, going on to have four children – sons Felix, Isaac, Eli and Dexter.

Martin, who plays Mrs. Brown’s youngest son Trevor in the BBC show, now lives in Portugal but is understood to co-parent the children and stay at the family home whenever he is in his native Ireland. 

Mrs. Brown’s Boys, which has been both loved and maligned since its inception in 2011, is set to air two more episodes over the festive period – despite being plagued with claims of backstage drama and the departure of two cast members. 

The actors in question – Damien McKiernan and Gary Hollywood, who play couple Dino and Rory – were said to have discovered they earn less than the rest of the cast – which is largely made up of star Brendan O’Carroll’s family.

And an insider exclusively told MailOnline last year that the way the show is run behind-the-scenes makes for an unhappy work environment.

‘The show is very Upstairs/Downstairs, with a very clear divide between Brendan’s family and the few actual actors such as Gary and Damien. 

‘The family are all directors of the Mrs Brown’s production company and are always looked after. The BBC let Brendan do whatever he wants!’ 


Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button