Irish Film New York ( 3-6 October, 2013, NYU Cantor Center)
Irish Film New York (IFNY), an organization that screens the best of contemporary Irish cinema, announces the line-up for its third annual screening series at New York University’s Cantor Center. The six recent fiction and non-fiction features that comprise the IFNY Festival include two US premieres and three New York premieres. The films will screen October 4-6, 2013, at Cantor and will be preceded on October 3 by a seminar on financing Irish and US independent films.
“We have something for everybody this year, from the beautiful feature Silence by Pat Collins to Steph Green’s poignant debut Run & Jump, to the hilariously funny Hardy Bucks Movie,” said Niall McKay, executive director of IFNY. “For many years US filmmakers have been traveling to Ireland to make their films and now Irish filmmakers are looking to come to what they see as Ireland’s second capital—New York—to tell the many stories of the Irish in America. For the first time, IFNY will host a panel advising business people on how they might invest in this new breed of Irish, American, and Irish-American stories.”
Silence (2012) is a fiction/documentary hybrid, from Ireland’s most prolific and accomplished documentary director Pat Collins. The film follows Eoghan, a sound recordist, as he travels throughout Ireland, where he is attempting to record the sound of silence. . Silence was recently selected by the British Film Institute as its Film of the Week (August 9, 2013) and was one of the revelations at the 2013 London Film Festival. The film has been acclaimed by the BFI’s head, Geoff Andrew, as a “quietly extraordinary movie … as alert to the human passions on view as it is to its own status as a cinematic artefact”.
Director Steph Green, Oscar-nominated for her short New Boy (2007), makes her feature debut with this year’s opening night title, Run & Jump (2013). The film follows the emotional collision course wrought on a family when a husband suffers a rare form of stroke and an American doctor comes to stay with the family to study the illness.
Shot in 13 days “on the most micro of micro budgets”, say the filmmakers, Made in Belfast (2013) tells the compelling story of Jack Kelly, a writer returning to a home town he no longer recognizes. This feature—the debut of director Paul Kennedy—follows Kelly as he tries to mend fences with those whose secrets and lives he shamelessly exploited and exposed in his successful debut novel.
The closing night film is Ireland’s most successful low-budget independent feature—the cult comedy, The Hardy Bucks Movie (2013), a bawdy romp through Poland in the summer of 2012 during the European soccer championships there. Mike Cockayne’s film was spawned from the web series that became a television hit on national broadcaster RTÉ, where the Bucks—Eddie, Buzz, and Frenchtoast—get themselves into one hilarious scrape after another, while remaining one step ahead of their hometown nemesis, The Viper.
One of the highlights this year is When Ali Came to Ireland (2013), a documentary by Ross Whitaker on a little-known chapter in Muhammad Ali’s career, when he fought Al “Blue” Lewis in an open-air title bout in early 1970s Dublin. The event was promoted and financed by Butty Sugrue, a circus strongman from Co. Kerry, whose own story is as colorful as Ali’s.
King of the Travellers (2013) is another drama, set among Ireland’s indigenous traveler—or gypsy—community. Written and directed by Mark O’Connor, the film deals with the fallout from a family feud and attempts at reconciliation.
All films will be screened at New York University’s Cantor Center, 36 East 8th Street, from October 4-6, 2013, with several of the directors (Pat Collins, Steph Green, and Ross Whitaker) present to participate in post-screening Q&A sessions.
Irish Film Finance Panel
As the Irish film industry grows, an increasing number of Irish and Irish-American independent films are making their way to screens around the world. Within the next 24 months, at least four Irish directors are scheduled to shoot their films in the US: Peter Foott, Marian Quinn, Naomi Sheridan, and Pat Collins. IFNY’s inaugural film financing panel covers investing in Irish films shooting in the US. This panel, co-presented with the International Irish Business Network (IIBN), will discuss how to become a shareholder in an independent film, and a part of the next generation of Irish filmmaking. Panelists include Gigi Dement, Oscar-winning producer for the short film, The God of Love; Limerick-born Eoin Egan, vice-president, Pinewood Studios, USA; Jonathan Gray of entertainment law firm Gray Krauss Stratford Des Rochers LLP, counsel on Beasts of the Southern Wild, Black Swan, and Precious; and Constance McFeeley, senior project manager, Tax Incentive Program, New York State Governor’s Office for Motion Picture and Television Development. IFNY’s Niall McKay, an Emmy winning director and producer, will moderate the event.
IRISH FILM NEW YORK, 2013:
Friday, October 4
5:30 pm Opening Night Reception at Glucksman Ireland House (5th Avenue at Washington Square Pk)
7:30 pm Run & Jump (102 mins), followed by Q&A with director Steph Green
Saturday, October 5
5:00 pm Made in Belfast (83 min)
7:30 pm Silence (84 min), followed by Q&A with director Pat Collins
Sunday, October 6
4:30 pm King of the Travellers (78 min)
6:00 pm When Ali Came to Ireland (50 min), followed by Q&A with director Ross Whitaker
7:30 pm The Hardy Bucks Movie (89 min)