The Dublin Feminist Festival: Filmmaker Carmen García & Programme Manager Dr Jennifer O’Meara

In this podcast, Gemma Creagh is joined by Carmen García and Dr Jennifer O’Meara to talk about the Dublin Feminist Film Festival, which runs 22 – 24 August 2019.

Carmen García is a feminist videojournalist, journalist and filmmaker. Her film Tra na mban / Ladies Beach screens at the festival as part of the shorts programme on Thursday, 22nd August.

Dr Jennifer O’Meara is an Assistant Professor in Film Studies at Trinity College Dublin, and a programming manager for the Dublin Feminist Film Festival.

Full programme here
Buy tickets here
Tra na mban / Ladies Beach (2019) Mexico (6.36)
Dir. Carmen Garcia Gonzalez
In the west coast of Ireland, a group of Irish women 40 to 80 years old swim every morning in the Atlantic cold waters come rain or shine. Martell, who hasn’t missed a day in 10 years now, let us know how is it for her and the swimmers to meet at the Ladies Beach in Galway, vent together under the cold water and share a hot coffee and a warm chat afterwards. A tight-knit bunch brought together by their love to the sea.
Instagram: @carmengarxia
Twitter: @carmengarxia

 

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Review of Irish Film @ Galway Film Fleadh 2019: Never Grow Old

Ruth McNally reviews Ivan Kavanagh’s Western starring John Cusack, Emile Hirsch and Déborah François.

The sold-out closing film of this year’s Film Fleadh was Never Grow Old, a dark and gritty Western, written and directed by Ivan Kavanagh. Kavanagh and some of the Irish cast and crew were in attendance on the night. Kavanagh described the film as the “Western he wanted to make”. He had begun writing it almost ten years previously but noted that it felt like the right time to make the film now as many of the themes feel very relevant to current times. 

The film centres around Irish immigrant Patrick Tate (Emile Hirsch), the local undertaker in a small American frontier town. The town is a pious community, a “holy town” effectively run by the Preacher (Danny Webb). Alcohol, gambling and prostitution have been prohibited and judgement is rife should you step out of line with the town’s imposed morals. Patrick Tate and his French wife, Audrey (Déborah François), consider setting off towards California as they struggle both to fit in and make ends meet.

The quiet existence of the town is unreservedly changed upon the arrival of the outlaw Dutch Albert (John Cusack) and his two cronies. Arriving to the town in search of a wanted man, they decide to stick around and set up shop. They forcibly reopen the saloon, recruit some reluctant prostitutes and with that, the Wild West is back. Dutch Albert takes a special interest in Tate, asking him to facilitate a “private burial”. The threat of the gang and the fact that his family are struggling forces Tate to take this opportunity and henceforth they form an uncomfortable business relationship.  

John Cusack is almost unrecognisable in his manner as Dutch Albert – he fills his scenes with a quiet but palpable menace. The character is both erratic and strangely moralistic in his way, appearing to be taking Patrick Tate under his wing as an immigrant – and therefore an outsider – in the community.  The hypocrisy of this “holy” community is referenced throughout the film, particularly as people rejected by the church start desperately turning to Dutch Albert for work. The law does not wield much power in this town – the sheriff is an ineffective character who bends to the will of the preacher. The two extremes of religious purity and hedonism are the forces at odds with each other and the only sources of power in the town.

Patrick Tate is an almost passive character, adapting to situations as they arise and only acting when something forces his hand. He appeases Dutch Albert while holding him in contempt. His fluctuating motivations in the story mean that he is not a clear hero. As he gets more deeply involved in Dutch Albert’s dirty work, the voice of reason comes from his wife Audrey, played by Déborah François. She is a sympathetic and endearing character and while Tate becomes more dubious in his morality, Audrey becomes the character that you root for. One of the more uncomfortable aspects of the film comes from the threat against Audrey from Dutch Albert’s tongueless henchman Dumb-Dumb (Sam Louwyck), who leers at her a cold, quiet, violence throughout. The anticipation created around this violence adds a sense of dread that permeates the story.

The film is visually very impressive. Much of the outdoor scenes were shot in Connemara – an American frontier town was effectively created somewhere near Oughterard, Galway. The attention to detail in the production design, costume and set design means that everything feels authentic in terms of place and time. The Irish weather conditions do make an appearance in the form of the copious amount of mud visible in the film. These conditions are used to the filmmaker’s advantage as everything is built into showing the hardship of life in this town. The grey skies, rain and seas of mud are all part of the struggle of daily life and reflect the characters’ experience. 

Never Grow Old is an immersive film – once you are in, you are in, for better or for worse. It shows frontier life at its most fantastically harsh, with characters that showcase the darker extremes of humanity. At the screening Kavanagh described it as an allusion to how America was “founded in violence”; the result is a convincing Western, with a good dose of grim and grit.

 

Never Grow Old screened 14th July as part of the 2019 Galway Film Fleadh (9 – 14 July)

 

Never Grow Old is released in Irish cinemas 23rd August 2019


2019 | Ireland, Luxembourg, Belgium, France | 100 mins

 

 

 

 

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Irish Films Screening at Toronto International Film Festival

The Toronto International Film Festival runs from 5-15 September and features a number of Irish films in its programme.

 
 

Henry Glassie: Field Work
DIR: Pat Collins

 

 

A magisterial portrait of the most renowned American folklorist and ethnologist Henry Glassie, now in his seventies. The film is a beautifully intricate exposition of Glassie’s life’s work, displaying Collin’s trademark deft touch and remarkable eye for details of the deepest significance.

Ordinary Love
DIR: Lisa Barros-d’Sa and Glenn Leyburn 
WRI: Owen McCafferty

 

 
Liam Neeson and Lesley Manville star in this Northern Ireland Screen-funded film as a long-standing couple facing a potentially life-changing cancer diagnosis, in this drama scripted by Northern Irish playwright Owen McCafferty.

 

CAST: Liam Neeson, Lesley Manville, Amit Shah

 
The Other Lamb
DIR: Małgorzata Szumowska
WRI: C.S. McMullen

 

 
A girl (Raffey Cassidy) born into an all-female cult led by a man in their compound (Michiel Huisman) begins to question his teachings and her own reality, in this haunting, English-language debut from acclaimed Polish director Malgorzata Szumowska (The Body, Mug). An Irish-Belgian co-production.

 

CAST: Michiel Huisman, Raffey Cassidy, Denise Gough

 
A Bump Along the Way
DIR: Shelly Love
WRI: Tess McGowan

 

 
When a fun-loving, middle-aged single mom accidentally gets pregnant, her prim teenage daughter is scandalized. But mother and daughter slowly reverse roles as the pregnancy progresses, in this delightful, insightful Northern Irish dramedy.
 

 

CAST: Bronagh Gallagher, Lola Petticrew, Mary Moulds

Calm With Horses
DIR: Nick Rowland
WRI: Joe Murtagh

 

When a former boxer is offered a gig as an enforcer with the local drug mafia, life seems on the uptick — but the demands weigh heavily as he makes inroads with his young son, in Nick Rowland’s brooding yet tender crime film.

 

CAST:  Barry Keoghan, Ned Dennehy, Niamh Algar

 
Sea Fever
DIR/WRI: Neasa Hardiman

 

 
A bizarre creature hitches a ride on a departing trawler, in this masterful genre film from Irish filmmaker Neasa Hardiman that leverages the mysteries of the sea to amplify the potential horrors of the unknown.

 

CAST: Connie Nielsen, Hermione Corfield, Dougray Scott

 
Sweetness in the Belly
DIR: Zeresenay Berhane Mehari
WRI: Laura Phillips

 

 
Dakota Fanning stars in this Irish-Canadian adaptation of Camilla Gibb’s bestseller, set in England and Ethiopia, about an altruistic and devout young woman with a nomadic past seeking to reconnect with the man she loves.

 
CAST: Dakota Fanning, Kunal Nayyar, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II

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Review of Irish Film @ Galway Film Fleadh 2019: Irish Talent: New Shorts 1: Documentary 

Farmer Michael (The Life and Times of a Social Media Pariah)

Seán Crosson took in a selection of  documentary shorts at this year’s Fleadh, featuring works from both established and debut directors, showcasing the best of Irish talent. 

A key component of the Galway Film Fleadh’s focus on new and emerging talent is the series of short programmes featured across the festival. In total there were nine sessions dedicated to shorts at the Fleadh, covering documentary, fiction, and animation and as always the organisers deserve great credit for the focus and space they allocate to young Irish filmmakers in the programme. 

The films included in the first programme covered a wide range of topics from reflections on Irishness, to profile pieces, and considerations of aspects of the natural world.

El Hor

The programme began with the visually stunning and evocative El Hor directed by Dianne Lucille Campbell. Inspired by the beautiful Saluki dog, the film combines mythology, nature imagery, and dynamic cinematography, with otherworldly musical accompaniment. In the surreal landscapes and images created, the film is reminiscent of Maya Deren’s work, but also in its imagining of the world from the perspective of the animals featured, the work of Stan Brakhage. Overall Campbell has produced an extraordinary cacophony of sound and image, impossible to categorise but rather oddly included in a section dedicated to short documentaries; this was a work much closer in form to experimental film.

Our Land

More in keeping with documentary form was Eoin Harnett’s Our Land, an impressively realised reflection on what makes Ireland distinctive. Featuring seven contributors, each of whom provide engaging, humorous and at times insightful commentary on the topic, the documentary was excellently paced, moving effectively between its contributors and supporting footage from the streets of Galway.

Recommend Rapper

The subsequent films Recommend Rapper (Caoimhin Coffey) and Farmer Michael (The Life and Times of a Social Media Pariah) (Gerard Walsh) each provided profiles of intriguing characters from Galway. Recommend Rapper focuses on would-be rapper Danny Rock from Kinvara in Galway and his efforts to produce his first music video. While generally well produced, there is an uneasy tension (never entirely resolved) evident in this work between the director’s concern to sympathetically portray the subject and Rock becoming himself a figure of fun. Farmer Michael concerns the man (Steven Timothy) behind the comic character in the film’s title who has achieved a considerable following in recent years for his entertaining and idiosyncratic YouTube videos. This is an entertaining and at times moving account of the challenges Timothy has faced in his life. However, it is also a somewhat unbalanced piece that would have benefited from either a longer profile to accommodate the tonal changes apparent or a more focused production. 

Squared Circle

Squared Circle is an interesting chronicle of a group of wrestlers setting up and performing  on Waterford promenade, accompanied by an evocative commentary of the events concerned, written by Dublin-based wrestling promoter Simon Rochford, and recited by actor Ger Carey. In its day-in-a-life structure, the documentary is an informative account of the wrestlers featured and the effort involved in the events they organise and participate in.

Making Tom

Big Tom McBride was a legendary figure in Irish country music, above all for people from his native Castleblayney in Co. Monaghan. Táine King and Lorraine Higgins’ Making Tom is a sensitively produced study of the making of a statue to commemorate the country and Irish legend, and the impact of its unveiling on residents of his home town.

Pigeons of Discontent

The final documentary featured in this programme was Paddy Cahill’s Pigeons of Discontent – this was amongst the strongest works featured in this section, imaginatively engaging with the divided opinions among local residents of Stoneybatter in Dublin city towards the large number of pigeons that gather in the area. Cahill rightly chooses to focus his camera almost entirely on the pigeons themselves and the, at times, striking and beautiful shapes they create in flight, accompanied by comments (both positive and negative) from those who share Stoneybatter with them. 

Seán Crosson

 

The Irish Talent: New Shorts 1: Documentary programme screened 10th July as part of the 2019 Galway Film Fleadh (9 – 14 July).

 

 

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Review of Irish Film @ Galway Film Fleadh 2019: A Bump Along the Way

Siomha McQuinn gives up her seat for Shelly Love’s A Bump Along the Way.

A Bump Along the Way, a product of an all-female creative team and winner of Best Irish First Feature at the Galway Film Fleadh, is about the tumultuous relationship between happy-go-lucky Pamela and her 15-year-old daughter, Allegra, who does not shy away from scolding her mother’s behaviour. Picture a modern-day Gilmore Girls but the relationship between the Lorelei and Rory is more hostile, Rory is a vegan and Stars Hollow is now a gossipy town in Derry.

After a night of lacklustre romance with a younger man, Pamela is baffled to find herself pregnant. Her situation is far from ideal as the father wants nothing to do with her and she can barely make ends meet in her current situation. The news puts further strains on her relationship with Allegra and the pair must learn to navigate their reality as they prepare for the arrival of their newest family member.

Many of the ideas in this film are already well-trodden paths such as the mother/daughter role-reversal and the absent father. However, both Pamela and Allegra are given narratives that are separate to the central relationship and this makes the world of the film richer.

The role of Allegra is played by Lola Petticrew, who won the Bingham Ray New Talent Award for her performance. She switches seamlessly between being a callous and bitter teenage daughter and a shy, artistic student who falls prey to some of her classmates. Her acting style is very natural as she creates a character who is quietly brave. The way she treats her mother initially seems disproportionately cold and unfair but with the realisation that Allegra is having a difficult time in school, and the knowledge that Pamela’s pregnancy will only act as fuel for her bully’s taunts, it is easier to empathise with a teenager who is doing her best to survive a tough time in her life. 

Bronagh Gallagher, who plays Pamela with big-eyed lovability, is clueless to Allegra’s bullying. She is well-meaning but vulnerable, which makes the growth of her character even more pleasing. A party-girl by nature, she is restless during her pregnancy and it is endearing to watch the pure torture that it is for her stay at home and rest, made worse by Allegra’s increasingly busy social calendar.  

Apart from Pamela’s delightful baker boss and Allegra’s kind teacher, men are painted in an almost entirely negative light; from the father of Pamela’s unborn child, who is fiercely unkind when discovering the pregnancy, to Allegra’s father who kicks up a fuss when asked to contribute financially. Their characters lack much intricacy, but this is easily forgiven as A Bump Along the Way is a film that champions women and delves into their complexities, making a slight dent into the massive backlog of films that represent women through flimsily constructed characters. These typical toxic male characters are there to aid the narrative. Pamela realises that she needs to stand up to the negative men in her life if her daughter is ever to respect her. 

A Bump Along the Way is a sweet and uplifting film about female relationships, the difficulties of life in a small town and the power of standing up for yourself. Despite engaging with difficult topics like bullying and misogyny it remains light and upbeat. It is satisfying and fun and suggests a bright future for the women involved in its production. 

Siomha McQuinn

@SiomhaMcQuinoa

A Bump Along the Way screened 13th July as part of the 2019 Galway Film Fleadh (9 – 14 July).

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GAZE International LGBT Film Festival Roundtable

From left to right Katie McNeice, Tom Speers, Maya Derrington, Gemma Creagh and Roisín Geraghty

In this podcast, we welcome three filmmakers whose works are screening at this year’s GAZE International LGBT Film Festival (1 – 5 August). Maya Derrington, Katie McNeice and Tom Speers join Gemma Creagh to talk about their films and filmmaking.

Plus festival director Roisín Geraghty pops in to give us a quick look at this year’s programme.

Frida Think (Maya Derrington)

A woman walks into a party dressed as Frida Kahlo, only to find that her version of unique has mass appeal.


In Orbit (Katie McNeice)

A hypnotic and beautiful love story between two women that crosses both time and space.


Boy Saint (Tom Speers)

A sumptuous short film of friendship and adoration between boys, based on a poem by Peter LaBerge.

The GAZE International LGBT Film Festival runs from 1 – 5 August 2019. 

The Irish Shorts programme screens at  6:30pm at the Light House cinema on Sunday, 4th August.

Full programme & tickets here.

 

 

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David Magnier, Writer/Director of ‘Buoy’

In his short film Buoy, a young man throws himself off a lighthouse to end it all, but it’s only the beginning. Ahead of the film’s screening at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh, writer/director David Magnier tells Film Ireland how his short film came to surface. 

The idea for Buoy wormed its way into my head over the course of a few weeks, in the twilight hours between going to bed and falling asleep. I find this period of time the best for creative musings and if I latch onto something I like as I am about to fall asleep and if it’s good enough to pull myself out of near unconsciousness I write it down in my notes. As a result my notes make for some pretty weird reading but the idea for Buoy haunted me for weeks. It was one of those images I couldn’t shake and I just knew I had to make it as I couldn’t seem to make peace with not making it. So the three-and-a-half-year struggle to realise it began.

 

The first stage was pulling the narrative together, which was the easy bit as it’s pretty loose and open-ended and the young male suicide anomaly in Ireland is all around us so it was something I wanted to address. I felt the aesthetic of the west coast of Ireland would be the perfect landscape for it due to its sort of magical and attractive bleakness.

 

The second step was figuring out how to make it. This was the tricky part as I had never seen weightless floating achieved this way before so there wasn’t much by way of a ‘copy that’ reference. I have always had a huge affinity for post-production and using it as a storytelling tool, so this part, although stressful, was a great process to work though. Finally, it was settled on a series of shoots that we could piece together into a final result… we hoped:

 

  • On location in West Cork shooting all the background plates and locations, imagining there was a man floating in the air.
  • In the studio shooting the close-ups of his face so we can have some actual reactions and acting
  • In an underwater tank in the UK with a green screen behind the actor, which we could then drop onto the plates from the first shoot.
Sounds easy right? Well, nothing about this turned out easy. On the first day on the west coast shoot a heavy lift drone with a full days worth of footage plopped into the Atlantic Ocean (technical fault), which hammered morale of course also our lighthouse location fell through last minute. So we had to make a lot of compromises to get what we needed, not necessarily what we wanted. As a director this can be hard to swallow as you have an idea in your head, but you need to switch to firefighting mode and just get what you can without the production breaking. It’s occasions like this that your crew having your back is so so important and a few heroes tend to present themselves. Burschi Wojnar the DOP saved my bacon more than once on this shoot and without him going the extra mile the whole thing would have certainly fallen apart and Dave Minogue the co-producer pulled some magic to get a second lighthouse for us.

 

The underwater tank shoot was one of those high risk situations where you wonder, can David Thompson, our lead, act underwater while holding his breath. Thankfully, the answer was yes and he played such a blinder that by the end of the shoot day he was actually nearly blind. Talk about putting your body on the line. It was already becoming very apparent to me that I wasn’t the only one rooting for this film and the cast and crew were, if you’ll pardon the pun, keeping me afloat.

 

So with all the shoot days behind us the final and arguably the toughest hurdle was looming. Getting someone to do the incredible amount of post production for the meagre budget I had remaining. This took some bouncing around and the guts of two and half years as a few people took it on and the volume of work scared them off. Then Johnny Han introduced me to Brian Ali Harding, the next hero in the story. Brian took it on and although it was a lot more work than he anticipated – think bubble removals, rotoscoping, keying, CGI whales and seas, etc. – he took it on as a labour of love and saw it through. When you are lucky enough to find people who care about your project beyond just the budget available you are very fortunate indeed and that for me is what short film is all about. It’s a collaboration against the odds to make something you all end up emotionally invested in.

 

Buoy screens as part of the Irish Talent: New Shorts 2, Fiction programme on Thursday, 11th July at the Town Hall Theatre at 10:00 as part of the 2019 Galway Film Fleadh.The 31st Galway Film Fleadh runs 9 – 14 July 2019.

 

 

Preview of Irish Film at Galway Film Fleadh 2019

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Gerard Walsh, Director of Farmer Michael (The Life and Times of a Social Media Pariah)’

 

Gerard Wash’s short documentary introduces us to Farmer Michael, a Galway-based, divisive character getting millions of views online. But his creator, Stevo Timothy, has a past with far more twists and turns than anyone would expect.

 

Ahead of its screening at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh, Gerard tells Film Ireland about how the film came together.

 

Documentaries were always something that I enjoyed watching but I never thought I would make one. Feature films have been my goal for over ten years and after directing 3 I decided why not! Let’s give it a go.

I have always been interested in telling people’s stories through small profile pieces and just putting them online so I was really going into the documentary blindfolded. Learning each day.

In between work and personal projects I enjoy asking interesting people that I encounter if I can document their story or talents and just put it out there. It helped me with my filmmaking and storytelling and I would always learn something new.

I still don’t know if it’s a selfless or selfish thing to do because I enjoy taking a peek into other people’s lives. The goal for me is always to help the subject with some sort of release or maybe just help them show off their talents.

I started this with a YouTube channel over 5 years ago called “LIVESETS” at the time. I would contact bands and singer/songwriters and just shoot one-take live performances. But after a while I wanted to do profiles on people from all walks of life. From barbers and sportspeople to comedians and grieving mothers.

Eventually I was approached by Stevo (Farmer Michael). I had worked with him a few years back on a promo video for a pub in Galway and after that, asked him to play a small part in my film South, so there was a bit of a relationship there.

He was looking for someone to create a short video about him and his life so I agreed.  When I sat down to interview him I really wasn’t expecting him to tell me the things he did. I felt Immediately torn on how to tell his story.

On one hand, it is a story of success, redemption and prevailing through art. I think that’s the story he wanted me to focus on originally.  But on the other hand, it’s a story about a terrible tragedy and something that could change a lot of people’s’ minds on how they feel about Stevo as a real person and not just his character.

After the first interview I realized that the story was bigger than I originally thought so I decided to spend more time exploring his life. I shot more days over the course of a year and wanted to see different sides of Stevo. I wanted an ending, I wanted some sort of redemption. For me, redemption needs to be shown over the course of time, it needs to be earned and I wanted that to come across in film.

If I’m being honest I was just looking for an honest way to tell the story and I’m not 100 percent sure I found it. The cut of the film as it stands has an ending, I think it works the way I indented it too, for now,  but I would eventually like to explore the idea of a longer film, hopefully we can acquire some funding for a feature-length version.

I always had a the goal of letting the viewer decide how they feel at the end and not forcing my own opinion on them. I could have easily sugar-coated Stevo’s story and tied it up in a nice little bow but there is no way I would. I have laid out as much as I could and I think that’s my responsibility as a storyteller.

If people are expecting to see a film based on a comedian and his hilarious exploits, they may be in for a bit of a surprise with this film. It is a story about a comedian, but also a story about a man with an extraordinary past.

I’m really looking forward to hearing people’s opinions and views after they see the film, I could be over-thinking everything and it’s entirely possible that I may have my head up my hole with my analysis of the film. But let’s see how it gets on.

Farmer Michael (The Life and Times of a Social Media Pariah) screens as part of the Irish Talent: New Shorts 1, Documentary Irish Talent: New Shorts 6, Fiction programme on Wednesday, 10th July at the Town Hall Theatre at 12:00 as part of the 2019 Galway Film Fleadh.

The 31st Galway Film Fleadh runs 9 – 14 July 2019.

 

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Tristan Heanue, Writer/Director of ‘Ciúnas’

 

Tristan Heanue gives us an insight into Ciúnas, his Irish language short film, which is screening at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh. Tristan is also nominated for The Bingham Ray New Talent Award at this year’s festival.

What can you tell us about Ciunas?

It follows a couple as they drive to the city to collect their daughter, they are in the middle of a family crisis. It focuses mainly on the parents and how they cope with the situation.

How did the idea come about?

I was visiting someone in a psychiatric hospital a few years ago and I saw a middle-aged couple sitting at the table next to me in the waiting area. They weren’t speaking and just sitting there in silence.

A few minutes later their daughter arrived, I had no idea why she was there and nothing was addressed when they met. They just proceeded to make small talk even though they both looked like they had a million things they wanted to say to her and ask her. It just stuck in my head, that old Irish thing of not being able to express your feelings or say what you feel. I started to imagine their morning before they came to the hospital and that was where the main story came from.

A few years later I submitted the idea in a paragraph to the Físín Script competition run by the Dingle Film Festival and it was shortlisted and eventually went on to win the award which came with €5000 funding and €2000 equipment rental to make the film.

You’ve a fantastic cast, including Hazel Doupe, who was staggeringly good in Float Like a Butterfly. Can you tell us about finding your 3 leads and working with them.

I saw Hazel in Michael Inside at the Fleadh a couple of years ago, she only had one scene but I was blown away by the emotion and how real she was. I contacted Frank Berry and he put us in touch, I sent her the script and thankfully she liked it.  She’s a really special talent, and takes her work very seriously, I’ve no doubt that she will have an incredible career.

Gary Lydon I have been a fan of for years, we did a film together last August and on the last day I asked him how his Irish was and if he would like to read the script. Again I was delighted he liked it and came on board, we worked very closely on his character and spoke at length in the months preceding the shoot and I think that shows in his performance.

Ally Ní Chairáin I had met through a friend and I instantly knew I wanted to work with her. She was the first person to be cast and again we spoke at length regarding her character and we worked out many ideas and subplots, none of which you see on screen but they gave her layers to her character and performance.

On set it was a dream really, the work we had done individually really showed and everyone hit the ground running. We didn’t rehearse really, apart from a few reads of it the night before we shot.

Does your background as an actor feed in to your directing?

Definitely, I love working with actors, it’s one of, if not my favourite part of the directing process. You just have a better understanding of how they think and what they may need to hear when you’ve acted yourself. You are more sensitive to their needs and can be quite protective of them.

I see you’re working with Narayan [Van Maele, cinematographer] again alongside you – what does he bring to the project and maybe tell us a little bit about working with him.

Narayan’s incredible, we have a wonderful collaborative relationship. He brings so much knowledge with him and always has so many ideas and suggestions. We usually do our location recce together and plan the shot list after. But we like to keep it kind of loose so if something isn’t working or locations change we can work together to find solutions or a better way to do it. I’m looking forward to making many more films with him.

Also you have the brilliant Michael Fleming composing the music…

Yeah, we had worked together on my previous film and I loved the experience. We agreed that this project needed a very subtle score. We decided early on that too many notes over such a delicate piece felt contrived so we set about finding sound textures that reflected the mood instead.

You were also nominated for The Bingham Ray New Talent Award at this year’s festival – what does that mean for you?

It was a real shock to be honest, they had never nominated a short filmmaker before so I really didn’t expect it. I’m hugely honoured and so happy that they liked the film and connected with it. Win or lose it’s a great boost and hopefully it helps bring the film to the attention of some more festivals and helps it on its journey. Things like this can really make a difference with an independent film.

 

Ciúnas screens as part of the Irish Talent: New Shorts 6, Fiction programme on Saturday, 13th July at the Town Hall Theatre at 10:00 as part of the 2019 Galway Film Fleadh.

 

The 31st Galway Film Fleadh runs 914 July 2019.

 

Preview of Irish Film at Galway Film Fleadh 2019

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GAZE LGBT Film Festival Launches 2019 Programme

The GAZE LGBT Film Festival officially launched the programme for the 27th festival last night at The Dock and was attended by special guests and filmmakers.

The GAZE LGBT Film Festival announced a  packed line-up of International and Irish films and guest filmmakers taking part in the festival which runs from 1st – 5th August 2019 at Light House Cinema, Smithfield. Numerous filmmakers will be discussing their work and meeting audiences during Q&As after screenings of films that explore a diverse range of subjects, styles and stories.

Chairperson of the Board of GAZE, Sarah Williams, welcomed guests by saying “We’re thrilled to launch this very ambitious festival programme with our audiences and friends tonight, particularly our valued lead sponsors Accenture. We share the belief that equality is non-negotiable and sharing the power of our LGBT stories is what GAZE is all about.  GAZE is about visibility, advocacy, remembrance and sharing a vision for the future.  We are passionate about providing a platform for new international and Irish LGBT film and look forward to welcoming a broad audience to this year’s event.”

GAZE programmer Roisín Geraghty said “This year’s programme is intersectional, intergenerational, and as always, international.  We really hope that audiences will come to support the festival and enjoy the selection of films and discussions on offer.  This year marks my fifth and final GAZE programme, and I want to say thanks to colleagues, sponsors and audiences alike for their support.”

Major titles announced include the opening gala screening, Deep in Vogue, a riotous look at the Manchester vogue scene; Mapplethorpe, which chronicles the volatile life and astounding art of photographer Robert Mapplethorpe; along with the closing film starring Laure Dern, JT Leroy, where director Justin Kelly brings the completely bonkers true story of JT to the screen for the first time in fiction form, capturing the human drama behind the headlines of ‘the literary hoax of our generation”.

A spotlight on Latin American LGBT films will showcase five features from countries including Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela, along with numerous short films represented across the shorts programmes in the festival.  These bring together vastly different story forms, narrative styles and emotional responses.

The GAZE Film Festival is also  partnering with the IFI’s Education Department and BeLonG To Youth Services on a special 15 – 18s screening of Handsome Devil, including a Q&A with writer / director John Butler.

Screenings form a key part of the GAZE 2019 Film Festival programme, which will show the very best in contemporary LGBT films, but will also include discussions and special events including a special Queer Family Event on Monday 5th August, which is tailored to appeal to all families. This will include a special screening of The Little Mermaid, and Drag Queen Story Time at The Gutter Bookshop in Temple Bar.

 

Full details of all the events are available at www.gaze.ie , where tickets are also on sale.

The GAZE 2019 Film Festival takes place at Light House Cinema, Smithfield, from August 1st – 5th 2019 with some of the programme also taking place in the IFI and The Gutter Bookshop.

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31st Galway Film Fleadh Programme

Extra Ordinary 

Galway Film Fleadh has announced their 2019 programme which includes 95 International and Irish feature films. This year’s programme features films from 36 countries including 10 World Premieres. 30 films are feature directorial debuts and over 40% of films are by female filmmakers. 

This year’s programme includes a programme of New Irish Cinema, featuring a number of World Premieres from talented Irish directors. This home-grown programme includes dramatic and comedic features in addition to a range of documentaries which cover a range of topics across politics, the arts, culinary innovation and human rights.

New Irish Cinema Highlights include, Jihad Jane, a debut documentary from emerging Irish filmmaker Ciaran Cassidy which paints an intriguing portrait of the online post-9/11 world. Finky, directed by Dathaí Keane (An Klondike), is an Irish-language drama about a musician and puppeteer who finds his way into a hellish circus troupe. Breaking Out, a documentary filmed over 10 years about the larger-than-life musician Fergus O’Farrell who, undaunted by his diagnosis with muscular dystrophy, continued to tour and compose music for the Oscar® winning film, Once. The doc has a special connection to the Film Fleadh, as the festival to give Once its World Premiere in 2006. Bruno, directed by Karl Golden and starring Diarmuid Murtagh, is a drama about a homeless Irishman in London. Animals (Sophie Hyde) is based on the acclaimed novel by Emma Jane Unsworth which tells the hedonistic female-driven story of two thirty-something party-mad friends who wreak havoc on the streets of Dublin.

Speaking at the programme launch, Director of Programming Will Fitzgerald talked about the line-up by relating a story about watching Agnès Varda’s last film, which plays on the closing day of the Fleadh: “This year’s Fleadh is as much about celebrating cinematic accomplishments as discovering new talent. Inspired by the Gleaner herself, I’d been taking a trip down cinema lane, gleaning some of the highlights. This year’s Fleadh has got tributes to Varda, cinematographer Robby Müller, an animated biopic of Luis Buñuel, documentaries on the composer Scott Walker and the making of Alien, and more.”

Other festival highlights include Never Grow Old, the festival’s closing film from Irish director Ivan Kavanagh and starring Emile Hirsch and John Cusack, a dark Western tale about an Irish undertaker on the American frontier. Sing me Back Home, the festival’s opening film, is French actress Sandrine Dumas’ (Let the Sunshine In) directorial debut. Bait, Mark Jenkin’s film shot on a 1976 Bolex 16mm camera and processed by hand tells the story of a northern English fisherman without a boat.

A Bread Factory, a film in two parts is Patrick Wang’s newest film after 2015’s The Grief of Others, a small-town comedy drama starring Tyne Dale (Cagney & Lacey).

Rounding out the premieres and Q+A’s are a range of event screenings, panel discussions and public interviews which include a dog-friendly screening of the documentary Buddy about the bond between guide dogs and their owners, a special Singalong version of the Disney classic The Little Mermaid and Cumar: A Galway Rhapsody, a portrait of Galway’s artistic community, including author Mike McCormack, comedian Tommy Tiernan, poet Rita Ann Higgins, Macnas and many more. 

The 2019 Film Fleadh features a culinary cinema strand including the World Premiere of Stage: The Culinary Internship, exposing the reliance of Michelin star restaurants on unpaid internships, among other films including The Heat: A Kitchen (R )evolution, championing the work of female chefs in the restaurant industry.

The festival will present a series of political documentaries in a section titled The Film Fleadh Goes to Washington, featuring insight and archive footage. These include Watergate – Or: How We Learned to Stop an Out of Control President which is presented in two parts plus Active Measures, an well researched look at Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election and Dark Money, which follows the money trail behind U.S. poltics and a  fly-on-the-wall portrait of Steve Bannon called The Brink.

The programme also brings back its selection of music-related films including opening night late film Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love about the late Leonard Cohen and his muse Marianne Ihlen. This strand will also feature Once AuroraEvery Night’s a Saturday Night and Heyday: The Mic Christopher Story, spotlighting artists AURORA, Rolling Stones’ sax player Bobby Keys and the late Irish singer/songwriter Mic Christopher respectively.

On the closing night is the Film Fleadh Awards Ceremony, which includes the Bingham Ray New Talent Award, for which five filmmakers across the fields of directing, producing and acting have been nominated. The 2019 nominees are directors Mike Ahern  (Extra Ordinary), Enda Loughman (Extra Ordinary), actor Lola Petticrew (A Bump Along the Way), actor Lauryn Canny (Darlin’) and director Tristan Heanue (Ciúnas (Silence)).

The 31stGalway Film Fleadh takes place from 9th-14thJuly in the Town Hall Theatre and Pálás cinema, Galway. 

Full list of films here

Tickets and further information for all films and events are now available at www.galwayfilmfleadh.com

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8 Irish Film Festivals Sign Pledge for Gender Parity and Inclusion

Women in Film and Television Ireland (wft.ie) a chapter of Women in Film and Television International, has announced that to date 8 Irish Film festivals have accepted their invitation to sign up to the 5050×2020 Gender Parity and Inclusion Pledge which was launched by Cannes Festival chiefs at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival.

These are: Animation Dingle, Cork Film Festival, Dublin Feminist Film Festival, Galway Film Fleadh, GAZE LGBT Film Festival, Kerry Film Festival, Still Voices Short Film Festival and Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival.
Founded in 2003, the Dublin International Film Festival sets the agenda of the year with its programme of outstanding Irish and international film.

The official Irish festival signing was held yesterday at The Lighthouse Cinema with John Rice (Co-Founder & Director Animation Dingle), Aoife O’Toole (Director Dublin Feminist Film Festival), Fiona Clark (Producer & CEO Cork Film Festival), Ronan O’ Toole (Director Still Voices Short Film Festival) and Gráinne Humphreys (Festival Director Dublin International Film Festival) in attendance alongside Dr. Susan Liddy, (Chair of Women in Film & Television Ireland).

 

Dr Susan Liddy Chair of Women in Film and Television Ireland, Fiona Clark Producer & CEO Cork Film Festival, Aoife O’ Toole Director Dublin Feminist Film Festival, Grainne Humphreys Festival Director Dublin International Film Festival, John Rice Founder Animation Dingle and Ronan O Toole Director Still Voices Short Film Festival. Photo: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland.

It’s heartening that so many Irish film festivals have joined forces with us to formally commit to the principle of gender parity and inclusion in festivals. We warmly welcome their enthusiasm and solidarity and we hope this initiative will mark the beginning of a supportive partnership between us. We need more women in the film industry at every level. While girls’ and women’s voices are not heard and their stories are not told, our culture is the poorer for it. Film festivals are a hugely important part of any conversation about equality. They are an important link in the journey of a film and filmmaker. This is why we need greater transparency about what films are submitted, what films are selected and who is making the decisions. As with anything, information must be the starting point and we commend these festivals for agreeing to track that. This is an initiative that WFT Ireland will be building on over the coming months and we call on other festivals to join with us and embrace the challenge.
Dr. Susan Liddy, Chair – Women in Film & Television Ireland

Initiated by the 5050 Pour 2020 Collective, a charter was signed in 2018 by Cannes’ festival chiefs to work towards gender parity and inclusion.

The charter invites film festivals across the world to make the following commitment to gender parity and inclusion:

  • To compile statistics of gender of the directors of all the films submitted to selection (and when possible, to also compile statistics of the cast and crew when mentioned in the registration process).
  • To make public the gender of the members of selection committees, programmers and programming consultants.
    To make public the gender of executive boards and/or boards of directors and/or to commit to a schedule to achieve parity in these bodies.
    All Irish festival signatories have committed to giving a full update to Women in Film & Television Ireland, who will make public their progress during their respective 2020 festivals.
  • Women in Film & Television Ireland will also update the 5050 Pour 2020 Collective about the new signatories in time for the 2019 Cannes Film Festival.

As Ireland’s first and largest film festival, Cork Film Festival (CFF) is pleased to join WFTV in partnering with the 5050×2020 Cannes Collective to pledge our commitment to the 5050×2020 Charter, alongside the first Irish signatories. CFF supports increased transparency and gender-focused change across the Irish film landscape. CFF actively advocates for equality and inclusion in our industry by creating opportunities for meaningful public and sector dialogue as part of the Festival and by monitoring gender parity across our programme, submissions, jurors, panelists, programmers, staff, Board and volunteers.

The 63rd edition of the Festival in 2018 demonstrated that the Festival is actively making steps towards achieving its gender parity commitment. For example, 42% of our Shorts Programme was directed, co-directed and/or produced by women and 72% of our award-winning films were directed, co-directed and/or produced by women, with 47% female awards jurors. While this demonstrates CFF’s commitment to achieving greater representation for women in our programme, we recognise the need to focus our collective energy on advocating for gender equality in the sector. We welcome the opportunity to participate in the 5050×2020 Cannes Collective to strive for equal representation for women’s voices in film.
Fiona Clark, Producer & CEO – Cork Film Festival

Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival is proud to be part of the first group of signatories to the 5050×2020 Charter. The festival puts the films and filmmakers at its heart and understands the importance of nurturing new and experienced talent alike.

In 2019, of the over 100 feature length films screened at the festival, we are glad to say that 59% had women producers and 30% were produced by people of colour. However, the Festival is not complacent about its progress to date, and recognises that there is more work to be done to achieve diversity in all of its activities.

This partnership between the festival, WIFT and Cannes is another important step in proactively changing the power dynamics and creative output of the Irish film industry for the better.
Gráinne Humphreys, Festival Director – Dublin International Film Festival

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Submissions & Funding Deadlines

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Looking for funding for your film? Want to submit your work to festivals? Keep an eye on upcoming deadlines here.

If you have a deadline you’d like us to include, please contact filmireland@gmail.com

Click on the link for further information:

Screen Ireland Production Funding:  TV Drama Production – 13th December 2019

Project Development Loans13th December 2019

Documentary Development 13th December 2019

Screenplay Development 13th December 2019

Fiction: Irish Production  – 13th December 2019

IDFA Bertha FUND – 10th December 2019

Festival Submissions: Irish Film Festival, Boston – 31st October 2019

TV Drama Development  – 31st October 2019

Project Development Loans – 31st October 2019

Documentary Development 31st October 2019

Screenplay Development31st October 2019

Eurimages Co-production Deadlines – 22nd October 2019

TV Drama Production Funding – 18th October 2019

Fiction: Irish Production18th October 2019

NFF+HBF Co-production scheme – 9th October 2019

Script + Project Development: Voices – 1st September 2019

EAVE Producers Workshop 2020 – 30th August 2019

Project Development Loans30th August 2019

Documentary Development 30th August 2019

Screenplay Development30th August 2019

Eurimages Co-production Deadlines 22nd August 2019

TV Drama Production Funding 16th August 2019

Fiction: Irish Production  16th August 2019

Authored Works Funding Scheme 15th August 2019

Script + Project Development: Bright Future 1st August 2019

Virgin Media Discovers Short Film Competition 26th July

Submissions for TG4 Programming 2020-2021 12th July 2019

Submissions for Medimed, the Euromed Docs Market & Pitching Forum 30th June 2019

NEXTWAVE 30th June 2019

TV Drama Development  28th June 2019 

Project Development Loans 28th June 2019 

Documentary Development  28th June 2019

Screenplay Development  28th June 2019

TV Drama Production Funding 14th June 2019

Fiction: Irish Production 14th June 2019

Dublin Feminist Film Festival Submissions  14th June 2019

TFL World Co-Production Fund 12th June 2019

ACE 29 Production Training Programme 12th June 2019

IBF Project Development  10th June 2019

IBF Production & Post Production  10th June  

Selective Distribution 7th June 2019

Cinema Distribution Selective Scheme  4th June 2019

TFL Audience Design Fund 3rd June

Galway Film Fleadh Pitching Competition 31st May 2019

Television Programming 28th May 2019

48 Hour Challenge 24th May 2019

NI Screen Craft and Technical Skills Scheme 10th May 2019

Reel Art Funding Scheme 9th May 2019

Support To Film Festivals  7th May 2019

Kerry Short Film Bursary 30th April

WRAP Development Support 30th April 2019

Project Development Loans 30th April 2019

Documentary Development  30th April 2019

Screenplay Development   30th April 2019

Creative Europe MEDIA Single Project Development 24th April 2019

Screen Leaders 19th April 2019

TV Drama Production Funding 16th April 2019

Fiction: Irish Production 16th April 2019

Irish Delegation to BANFF World Media Festival and Vancouver Trade Mission 12th April 2019

Promotion of European Works Online 5th April 2019

True North Shorts  3rd April 2019

IDFA Bertha Fund 1st April 2019

Shot by the Sea Submissions 31st March 2019

Young Irish Film Makers Screenwriting competition 31st March 2019

FilmOffaly Short Film Award  22nd March 2019

Newport Beach Film Festival Submissions 21st March 2019

Harp Media Student Short Film and Screenplay Competition 15th March 2019

Northern Ireland Screen’s Feature Documentary Development Funding 15th March 2019

Arts Grant Funding 14th March 2019

EFP Producers on the Move 2019 12 March 2019

Doc Fest Ireland Film Submissions 9th March 2019

Film Education 7th March 2019

Project Development Loans 28th February 2019 

TV Drama Development  28th February 2019

TV Drama Production Funding 28th February 2019

Documentary Development  28th February 2019

Screenplay Development  28th February 2019

Pitch Pilot Workshop Galway 22nd February 2019

Slate Funding Development  20th February 2019

WFT Members’ Short Film Showcase Submissions 20th February 2019

St. Patrick’s Film Festival London Short Film Submission – 15th February 2019

Fiction: Irish Production 15th February 2019

Access to Markets  7th February 2019

Beara Film Fest    31st January 2019

Arts Council Film bursary award  31st January 2019

First Cut! Youth Film Festival 14th January

Submissions for Writers Conference 11th January

SDGI Arri Alexa Take 11th January 2019

Galway Film Fleadh Feature Film Submissions 18th January 2019

Irish Film Festa Short Film Submissions 10th January 2019

Artist Residencies and Bursaries  @ Centre Culturel Irlandais 10th January 2019

Cinema Distribution Selective Scheme  8th January 

Newport Beach Film Festival 21st December 2018

Junior Entertainment Talent Slate 20th December 2018

Support To Film Festivals  20th December 2018 

Television Programming 18th December 2018 

Creative Europe MEDIA Single Project Development 18th December 2018

Irish Animation Awards Submissions 10th December 2018

Dingle International Film Festival  Submissions – 3rd December 2018

Dublin Smartphone Film Festival Submissions – 1st December 2018

Cartoon Movie 21st November 2018

BAI Sound & Vision Round 3 TV & Radio – 8th November 2018

BAI Sponsorship Scheme 2019 29th November

Shebeen Flick Submissions Late Deadline – 1st October 2018

Celtic Media Festival Submissions – 31st October 2018

Dingle International Film Festival  Físín Submissions  – 26th October

Festivals Investment Scheme – 25th October 2018

Celtic International Fund – 24th October 2018

Reel Art and Authored Works  –11 October 2018

BAI Archiving Funding Scheme  –4th October 2018

Shebeen Flick Submissions – 1st October 2018

International Co-Production Development Fund – 30th September 2018

BAI Canada-Ireland Co-development Incentive  – 28th September 2018

IMRO | RTÉ Scoring For Film Programme 28th September 2018

EWA Network Scriptwriter’s Residency 24th September

RTÉ | BAI Round 32  21st September 2018

Irish Screen America New York  Submissions Extended Deadline 14th September 2018

Irish Film Festival London Submissions 14th September 2018

Dublin Port Short Film Prize 13th September 2018

Annual Directors’ Finders Series Showcase 7th September 2018

Cinemagic Young Filmmaker 31st August 2018

Waterford Film Festival Late Deadline 31st August

Richard Harris International Film Festival Submissions Late Deadline 18th August 2018

Screen Ireland Film Project Award – 16th July 2018

Wexford Stories Short Film Funding 31st July 2018

ADIFF  Submissions 31st July 2018

Richard Harris International Film Festival Submissions 31st July 2018

Wicklow Screendance Laboratory 27th July 2018

Waterford Film Festival Short Films & Short Scripts 27th July 2018

Writing Mentorship Scheme 23rd July 2018

Film Mayo Creative Ireland Residency Award 18th July 2018

Underground Cinema Film Festival Submissions 14th July  2018

Spook Screen Submissions 30th June 2018

ilDÁNA Documentary Funding 21st June

IFI Documentary Festival Submissions 20th June 2018

Pitching Competition Galway Film Fleadh 8th June 2018

Galway Film Fair Marketplace 1st June 2018

Irish Film Board Production Funding 31st May 2018 

TV Programming Support Scheme 24th May 2018

Galway Film Fleadh Short Film Submissions 12th May 2018

Cork Film Festival  Feature Film Submissions 4th May 2018

Film Bursary Award 2018 27th April 2018

dlr First Frames Scheme Short Film Funding 27th April 2018

Arts and Disability Connect Funding Scheme 26th April 2018

Light Moves Festival of Screendance Submissions 20th April 2018

Support for Development of Audiovisual Content – Single Project 2018 19th April 2018

Screen Training Ireland Screen Leaders 13th April 2018

POV Training Scheme for female writers & directors  13th April 2018

Northern Ireland Screen’s Feature Doc Development 6th April 2018

Film In Cork 2018 Short Film Award Submissions 6th April 2018

OFFline Film Festival Animation Residency 30th March 2018

Artist in the community scheme Arts Council Funding 26th March

Film Offaly & Filmbase 2018 Short Film Award  23rd March 2018

EFP Producers on the Move 22nd March 2018

SHORT STORIES IFB Funding 23rd March 2018

Student Media Production Awards Funding 20th March 2018

Youth Music Video Competition 28th February 2018

IFB New Writing Development 28th February 2018

First Cut! Youth Film Festival Short Film Submissions 28th February 2018

IFTA Film & Drama Awards 15th February 2018

Arts Council Film Project Award  15th February 2018

Galway Film Centre & RTÉ Short Film Commission Scheme 14th February 2018

Hope: 1998 All Ireland Referendum Funding 9th February 2018

Creative Europe Slate Funding – Support for Development of Audiovisual Content 6th February 2018

Frameworks Scheme – 2nd February 2018

Irish Film Board Screenplay Development 31st January 2018

 Irelands Young Filmmaker of the Year 2018  26th January

Arts Council Film Bursary Award  25th January 2018

Bursary Information Day for Documentary Filmmakers 18th January 2018

Irish Film Festa Submissions 10th January 2018

BAI Sponsorship Scheme 4th January 2018 

Storyland Submissions 15th December 2017

Junior Entertainment Talent Slate 14th December 2017

IMRO Music for Screen Seminar 6th Dec 2017 

Dublin Smartphone Film Festival 1st December 2017

Sound and Vision 1st December 2017

BAI Sound & Vision Scheme Round 30 1st December 2017

Irish Film Festival, Boston 30th November, 2017

RTÉ ECommissioning – Irish Scripted Comedy 29th November 2017

Support for Development of Audiovisual Content – Single Project 2018 23th November 2017 

ilDÁNA 20th October 2017

IFTA Awards 2018 Submissions Deadline for Film & Drama 17th November 2017

TV Programming Support Scheme 16th November 2017

Reel Art 13th October 2017

Cine4 Development Scheme 6th October

Shebeen Flick 1st October 

Audi Dublin International Film Festival 1st October 2017

Irish Filmmaker Competition 27th August 2017

Foyle Film Festival 29th September 2017

TV3 Spring 2018 31st July 2017

Cork Film Festival  15th July 2017

Kerry Film Festival  14th July 2017

The One Minute Film Festival 30th June 2017

Light Moves Symposium 30th June 2017

Cine4 Development Scheme 22nd June 2017

Wexford Documentary Film Festival 19th June 2017

Galway Film Fleadh Pitching Competition 7th June 2017

Close Up – Filmbase Talent Development Scheme 5th June 2017

Jameson First Shot 1st June 2017

Film 48 Hour Challenge 31st May 2017

TV Programming Scheme 30th May 2017

Guth Gafa International Documentary Film Festival 29th May 2017

GAZE International LGBT Film Festival 12th  May 2017

Still Voices Short Film Festival 14th May 2017

Arts and Disability Connect 4th May 2017

TV3 Single Documentary Call Out 2017 31st April 2017

TV3 Autumn 2017 30th April 2017

dlr First Frames Scheme 28th April 2017

Support for Film Festivals 27th April 2017

Support for Content Development of a Single Project  20th April 2017

Science on Screen 19th April 2017

Galway Film Fleadh 31st March 2017

TV3 Studio Call Out 2017 22nd March 2017

The Short Film Festival of Ireland 17th March 2017

Sci-Fi Film Festival 15th March 2017

ilDÁNA 10th March 2017

Frameworks Short Film Scheme 10th March 2017

Support for Film Education 2nd March 2017

Arts Council Film Project Award 2nd March 2017

First Cut! Youth Film Festival  28th February 

Young Animator Of The Year Awards 28th February 2017

RTÉ Factual 20th February 20 17

SHORT SHOTS Filmbase/RTÉ Short Film Scheme 16th February 2017

Fastnet Film Festival 14th February 2017

Support for Development – Slate Funding  2nd February 2017

Short Film Commission Scheme 31st January 2017

Close Up – Development Scheme for Actors 26th January 2017

RTÉ Young Peoples Animated Shorts Scheme 18th January 2017

Factual Entertainment Series for RTÉ2 16th January 2017

Eurimages Co-production  12th January 2017

RTÉ  Comedy, Talent Development and Music proposals 5th January 2017

Irish Film Festa (short films) 20th December 2016

Film In Cork – Short Script Award 9th December 2016

Distribution – Selective Scheme  1st December 2016

Chicago Irish Film Festival 1st December 2016

Irish Film Board Development  30th November 2016

Irish Film Board Distribution 30th November 2016

Support for Film Festivals 24th November 2016 

TV Programming Scheme 24th November 2016 

Irish Film Festival London 23 – 27 November 2016

Support for Content Development of a Single Project – 17th November 2016

Irish Film Board Development 31st October 2016

Irish Film Board  Production & Distribution 28th October 2016

Audi Dublin International Film Festival  1st October 2016

IFB Production and Distribution Funding  30th September 2016

Canada-Ireland Co-development Incentive 28th September 2016

Northern Ireland Screen Short Film Funding 23rd September 2016

Radharc Awards 2016 23rd September 2016

Clones Film Festival Short Film Submissions 31st August 2016

Submissions for 10th Waterford Film Festival 26th August 2016

IFTA Gala Television Awards 22nd August 2016

IFB Focus Shorts  5th August 2016

IFB Real Shorts  5th August 2016

Underground Cinema Film Festival 31st July 2016

Cinemagic Belfast 25th July, 2016

Waterford Film Festival 15th July 2016

IFB Short Stories 15th July 2016

Kerry Film Festival 11th July 2016

Audi Dublin International Film Festival 11th July 2016

Galway Film Fleadh Pitching Competition 9th July 2016

Cork Film Festival 2nd July 2016

Fingal Film Festival 30th June 2016

IFI Documentary Festival 20th  June 2016

Galway Film Fleadh  The One Minute Film Festival June 23rd 2016 

IFB Production and Distribution Funding 17th June 2016

Distribution Selective Scheme 14th June 2016

Kerry Film Festival Short Film Submission 11th July 2016

Film on the Edge 10th June 2016

Galway Film Fleadh Pitching Competition 9th June 2016

Galway Film Fleadh 2016 Marketplace Applications 27th May 2016 

Light Moves 27th May 2016

Television Programming   26th May 2016  

Guth Gafa International Documentary Film Festival 15th May

Directors’ Finders Series Showcase 29th April 2016

Support for Film Festivals   28th April 2016

Single Project Development  21st April 2016

Eurimages Co-Production 15th April, 2016

Pitching Forum for Co-Production Projects April 15th 2016

March on Film 31st March, 2016

Feel Good Lost Filmmakers Competition  29th February 2016

Galway Film Fleadh  Feature Films 25th March 2016

Northern Ireland Screen’s Irish Language Broadcast Fund 18th March 2016

Frameworks 11th March 2016

Limerick Film Festival  4th March 2016

FilmOffaly Award 4th March 2016

Co-Production Funds 25 February 2016

IFB Production and Distribution Funding 19th February 2016

Jameson Gone in 60 Seconds 14th February 2016

Fastnet Film Festival 14th February 2016

March On Film 14th February 2016

First Cut! Youth Film Festival 12th February

Slate Funding 4th February 2016

Live Life National Film Competition 1st February

ASSET programme 30th January 2016

Short Shots @ Filmbase 28th January 2016

Access to Markets   28th January 2016

National Youth Media Awards 22nd January 2016

Fresh Film Festival 22nd January 2016

Arts Council Bursary Awards 21st January 2016

Young Directors Awards 2016 15th January 2016

Artists in Residence @ Centre Culturel Irlandais 11th January 2016

Jameson First Shot Film Competition 4th January 

Irish Film Festa (short film) 20th December

Belfast Film Festival Short Film Competition 18th December

Animation Dingle  December 4th 2015

Dingle International Film Festival 11th December 2015

Dublin Doc Fest 11th December 2015

EU Commission TV Programming Funding 3rd December, 2015 / May 26, 2016

Chicago Irish Film Festival 1st December 2015

Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival 20th November 2015

EU Commission Single Project Development Funding 19th November 2015 / 21st April 2016

Splanc! Irish language Arts Documentary Scheme 16th November 2015

Boston Irish Film Festival 15th November 2015

Feature Documentary Development 6th November 2015

Animation Dingle Early Deadline 6th November 2015

Dublin International Film Festival Short Film Submissions  31st October 2015

Junior Galway Film Fleadh Story Pitching Competition 30th October 2015

Celtic Media Festival  30th October 2015

Short Film Proposal in the Irish Language 19th October 2015

Reel Art  16th October 2015

OFFline Filmmaking Challenge 8 – 10 October 2015

Clones 48 Hour Short Film Challenge 5th October 2015

Ronan Phelan Euroconnection Pitching Award 2015 4 – 11 October 2015

Cinemagic Young Filmmaker Competition 30th September

Capital Irish Film Festival  30th September

Irish Film Festival London  28th September

Feminist Film Festival Short Film Submissions  25th September

Foyle Film Festival 25th September

BBC Writersroom Script Room 24th September

Pitch 25-minute doc for TG4 18th September

Richard Harris International Film Festival  4th September

Clones Film Festival  30th August

Guth Gafa ‘Next Generation’ Short Documentary Student Competition  28th August

Creative Proposals for RTE 26th August

Documentaries for Guth Gafa International Documentary Film Festival 22nd August

Indie Cork 1st August

Irish Screen America  1st August

GAZE International LGBT Film Festival  30th July

Sky Road TV & Film Festival 17th July  [Early Bird]

The One Minute Film Festival  30th June

Fingal Film Festival  30th June

Underground Cinema Film Festival  30th June

IFI Documentary Festival  24th  June

Shortfilm48 12 – 14 June

Light Moves  10th June

Charlie Chaplin Film Festival  1st June

Arts and Disability Connect  21st May

Lady’s First International Film Festival 20th May

Short Films for Galway Film Fleadh 2015  15th May

Frameworks  15th April

FilmOffaly/Filmbase 2015 Short Film Award  20th March

Secrets of Offaly – Public Art Commission  13th February

 AFTER ’16  6th February

Jameson First Shot 2015 1st February

Dublin Doc Fest Short Documentary Film  30th January

Irish Animation Awards  23rd January

Youth Film Festival  9th January

 

 

 

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East Asia Film Festival Ireland

For its third edition this April, the East Asia Film Festival Ireland (EAFFI) celebrates the diversity, artistry, and variety of filmmaking from East and South East Asia over four days from April 11-14th. The festival features established and award-winning filmmakers such as Hong Sang-Soo, Ying Liang, Zhang Ming and Ryusuke Hamaguchi. The festival also celebrates exciting new talent including Bi Gan, plus first features from Lina Wang and Phuttiphong Aroonpheng.

This year sees two guests of honour attend the festival: acclaimed director Tsai Ming-Liang and his long-time collaborator, actor Lee Kang-Sheng. They will present rare screenings of two of Tsai’s classic films, The River and I Don’t Want To Sleep Alone, plus his latest, Your Face. Tsai and Lee will also take part in a Masterclass, supported by Screen Skills Ireland and moderated by renowned critic Tony Rayns, on Saturday 13th.

A number of Irish premieres will also feature, including the festival’s opening film, Hong Sang-Soo’s latest comedy-drama Hotel by the River. With this new film, Hong has crafted an elegant tragi-comedy, a chamber piece that unfolds in less than 24 hours where an ageing poet is approaching his final days. Beautifully filmed in black and white, this is a fresh, humanistic exploration on family, life, love and death.

Commenting on this year’s slate, the festival’s Artistic and Programming Director Marie-Pierre Richard said, ‘’We are honoured to welcome auteur filmmaker Tsai Ming-Liang and actor Lee Kang-Sheng to present rare screening of three films programmed for our festival by Tsai and his producer. Distinguished film critic and one of the world’s leading experts on Asian cinema Tony Rayns will be here to conduct a masterclass and Q&As with Tsai and Lee, and also to present our opening and closing films. The new films playing at this year’s festival bring together the voices of significant filmmakers from a multitude of geographical contexts in East and South East Asia, with each skillfully addressing questions of identity and the burning issues of our time including ethnicity, nationhood and family.’

Also featuring at this year’s festival are Lina Wang’s stunning A First Farewell, a prize winner at both the Berlin and Tokyo film festivals; A Family Tour, directed by Ying Liang, is a moving drama that puts political pressure exerted on filmmakers under the spotlight; Bi Gan’s sumptuous Long Day’s Journey Into Night, which features a long, virtuoso single take, shot in 3D; Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s modern romance Asako I & II; Zhang Ming’s The Pluto Moment; and Liu Jie’s fast-paced social justice drama Baby, which sees a young woman abduct an infant who has the same birth defect she herself had as a child.

Closing the festival this year will be Phuttiphong Aroonpheng’s debut Manta Ray, which focuses on the relationship between a fisherman and the Rohingyan refugee he finds unconscious in the local swamps. This poignant film tackles the refugee experience and associated questions of identity, self, border, ethnicity and nationhood.

Tickets for the East Asian Film Festival Ireland are available now at www.ifi.ie/eaffi-2019 or by calling the IFI Box Office on 01-6793477. More information is also available from www.eaffi.ie.

 

 

Film Festivals 2019 – Here & Abroad

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St. Patrick’s Film Festival London 2019

The St. Patrick’s Film Festival London 2019 will take the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s ‘London is Open’ campaign as its inspiration, with a programme reflecting the spirit of diversity and inclusion in this great city. As Brexit approaches, many non-British people living in London are feeling unsettled, and Khan has said that he wants “all Londoners to be in no doubt: London Is Open and no matter where you’re from, you will always belong here.”

With this in mind the festival, which is presented by Irish Film London and forms part of London’s official St. Patrick’s Day Festival and Parade, brings together a collection of films celebrating outsiders, mavericks and the delightfully unique.

The Irish Film London Founder Kelly O’Connor said, “This year is set to be a real turning point for the UK, and against this backdrop we’re proud to be putting the notion of inclusion front and centre, reminding Irish people here that they are loved, championed and that they have a voice. The programme reflects the modern Ireland that we are all so incredibly proud to be a part of, especially within in the current global climate.”

Regent Street Cinema Programmer Shira MacLeod said, “It’s fantastic to once again join Irish Film London and the official St. Patrick’s Day Festival with this weekend celebrating Irish film. We’re particularly pleased to be a part of the conversation about diversity and inclusion. At Regent Street Cinema, our ongoing programme reflects the great diversity of London and we are proud to host unique film festivals like this one.”

Events for all ages will be held over the course of the weekend, with the main Festival Programme being shown at the Regent Street Cinema, just a two-minute walk from Oxford Circus tube station.

FESTIVAL PROGRAMME:

Friday 15th March

Venue: Regent Street Cinema

6.30pm: Opening the festival is a collection of short films from Ireland, including Hugh O’Connor’s beautiful animation The Overcoat, which was voiced by Peaky Blinders’ Cillian Murphy. The film tells the story of a young outcast clerk who desperately seeks the approval of the popular office group by spending his every last penny on an impressive new overcoat, only to find it brings him more attention than he bargained for.

The shorts programme also includes Ireland’s first ever vertical dance film Walls of Limerick, a statement on the psychological effects that harsh political borders have on people. The experimental short, which features versatile performers blending the worlds of dance and aerial dance, explores notions of barriers, borders and breaking loose.

8.15pm: John Butler (Handsome Devil, The Stag) once again delights with cross-cultural comedy drama Papi Chulo, starring Matt Bomer and Alejandro Patiño as unlikely companions. The film sees a lonely Los Angeles weather-man ‘hire’ a middle-aged Latino migrant worker to be his friend, in this darkly comedic reflection on class, ethnicity, and companionship in a busy contemporary world.

Saturday 16th March

Venue: Regent Street Cinema

2.00pm: Family and unusual friendships are at the centre of Colin McIvor’s exciting film Zoo, based on a true story set in Belfast in 1941. It sees Young Tom and his misfit friends fight to save ‘Buster’ the baby elephant during the German air raid bombings of the city.

3.45pm: An intergenerational puppet creatures craft workshop with Kabutar Arts. Based on the characters from the film Zoo, IFL invites children, their parents and grandparents to come together create their own 3D animals from everyday objects. Places are limited for the workshop so please book in advance to avoid disappointment. http://bit.ly/Tix_InterGenWShop

6.00pm: Take to the skies with a life-affirming documentary The Man Who Wanted to Fly. Capturing the wonder of one man’s dreams, the film tells the irresistible story of 80-something bachelor farmer Bobby Coote. He is determined to take flight. Even if it’s the last thing he does… Bobby is the perfect example of someone who sticks to his convictions, despite everyone’s preference, although well-meaning, for him to conform to a stereotype. Director Frank Shouldice will attend this screening to share his own experience of making the film.

St. Patrick’s Day, Sunday 17th March

Venue: Trafalgar Square & Regent Street Cinema

12noon-6pm: Pop in to chat with the Irish Film London Team among the community stalls on Trafalgar Square. You will be able to check out the festival trailer live on The Big Screen in the square, while enjoying the live music, food, dance and festivities.

6.30pm: After celebrations come to a close on Trafalgar Square, it’s back to Regent Street Cinema for the Festival Closing Night, with a final selection of Irish short films.

The full programme will be available on www.irishfilmlondon.com.

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See You Next Thursday Festival

See You Next Thursday Festival

See You Next Thursday Festival

The See You Next Thursday Festival has announced five events on the theme of womanhood, gender and sexuality in film. 

See You Next Thursday Festival

The Festival will host a mixture of internationally acclaimed and controversial films to tell the stories of women (and men!) trapped within the cultural and sexual conventions of their time but break free in a desperate attempt to realise themselves. Each session will give the audience the opportunity to directly engage with the film and its themes by opening the floor for discussing at the end of the screening.

This festival is organised by Louise Kari Méreau, the French Department, School of Languages, Literatures and Cultural Studies,  Trinity College.

Events

In the final session, a group of leading professionals and experts in the film industry will join in a debate on the nature of female sexuality and gender roles in cinema. Those in attendance will have the chance to ask questions, share their thoughts, and discuss the topic with a group of excellent guests, amongst which Dr. Ruth Barton (Film Studies, Trinity College Dublin), Vanessa Gildea (documentary filmmaker), Dr. Susan Liddy (Chair of Women in Film and TV Ireland)…

Programme:

Four films:

  1. Thursday 14th March 2019 : Love Meetings, Pier Paolo Pasolini (1966)
  2. Thursday 21st March 2019: Baise-Moi, Virginie Despentes and Caroline Trinh Thi (2000) [Rated R]
  3. Thursday 28th March 2019: The Hours, Stephen Daldry (2003)
  4. Thursday 4th April 2019: Farewell my Concubine, Chen Kaige (1993)

One discussion:

Thursday, 11th April 2019 7-9pm: Roundtable on womenhood and sexuality in films, moderated by Dr. Ruth Barton (Film studies, Trinity College Dublin)

With speakers including Vanessa Gildea (documentary filmmaker), Dr. Susan Liddy (chair of Women in Film and TV Ireland association)

For the other events of the festival, or to register your place visit their Eventbrite page.

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Irish Film @ 2019 Berlinale

The 2019 Berlin International Film Festival (Berlinale) runs from 07 – 17 February. Irish films on offer are:

A Dog Called Money

Panorama

As imaginative as the creative process it documents, A Dog Called Money is a uniquely intimate journey through the inspiration, writing and recording of a PJ Harvey record.

Director Seamus Murphy
Irish Production Company Blinder Films
Sales Agent Autlook Sales

Screening
Sat 09 Feb, 17:00, International (Premiere)
Sun 10 Feb, 14:30, Colosseum 1
Mon 11 Feb, 12:00, CineStar 7
Thurs 14 Feb, 14:00, International
Sat 16 Feb, 17:00, International
Sun 17 Feb, 20:00, CineStar 7


Shooting the Mafia

Panorama 

Shooting the Mafia unflinchingly explores the stark reality of life, and death, under the oppressive yoke of the Corleonesi Mafia.

Director Kim Longinotto
Irish Production Company Lunar Pictures
Sales Agent Submarine Entertainment

Screening 
Sat 09 Feb, 11:00, CineStar 8
Wed 13 Feb, 17:00, CineStar 7 (Premiere)
Thurs 14 Feb, 22:30, CineStar 7
Fri 15 Feb, 17:30, Cubix 7
Sat 16 Feb, 14:30, Colosseum 1


Metal Heart

Sisters Emma and Chantal are worlds apart. Emma is self-conscious, and unsure of which path to take in life. Chantal, meanwhile, is beautiful, confident, and knows exactly where her life is headed. When their parents go away for the summer, their simmering sibling rivalry threatens to boil over, especially when the mysterious boy next door moves back in.

Director Hugh O’Conor
Screenplay Paul Murray
Irish Production Company Treasure Entertainment
Sales Agent Bankside Films

Screening
Thurs 07 Feb, 17:00, Cinemaxx 14


She’s Missing

Heidi and Jane are best friends living in a small town in the desert. Jane — a Rodeo Queen contestant and military wife — goes missing and Heidi, now alone in the world, must begin a search across the desert.

Director/Screenplay Alexandra McGuinness
Irish Production Company Ripple World Pictures, TW Films
Sales Agent Carnaby Sales & Distribution

Screening
Fri 08 Feb, 13:35, Cinemaxx 15         Sun 10 Feb, 12:00, Cinemaxx 15


Gaza

Bringing us to a unique place beyond the reach of television and politics, Gaza presents a portrait of its citizens who attempt to lead meaningful lives beyond the rubble of perennial conflict.

Director Garry Keane, Andrew McConnell
Irish Production Company Real Films
Sales Agent Filmoption International

Screening
Thurs 07 Feb, 13:40, Cinemaxx 11     Sun 10 Feb, 12:40, Cinemaxx 12


Katie

Offering unprecedented access to legendary Irish boxer Katie Taylor, Katie charts the astonishing journey of the woman who put female boxing on the map.

Director Ross Whitaker
Irish Production Company True Films
Sales Agent WestEnd Films

Screening
Sat 09 Feb, 11:10, Cinestar 2
Mon 11 Feb, 14:35, Gropius Bau Cinema


Animals

A fierce and unapologetic celebration of female friendship, Animals is an intimate, funny and bittersweet examination of the challenges of turning talent into action, and being a modern woman, with faults, longings and competing desires.

Director Sophie Hyde
Irish Production Company Vico Films
Sales Agent Cornerstone Films

Screening
Fri 08 Feb, 11:20, Zoo Palast 3


Dirty God

Dirty God is a powerful film about motherhood, courage and self-acceptance, which follows Jade, a young mother recovering from an acid attack that has left her with severe facial burns.

Director Sacha Polak
Screenplay Sacha Polak, Susanne Farrell
Irish Production Company Savage Productions
Sales Agent Independent Films

Screening
Fri 08 Feb, 14:50, Cinemaxx 3
Mon 11 Feb, 13:05, Cinestar 5


Dark Lies the Island

Adapted from Kevin Barry’s collection of short stories, Dark Lies the Island follows the characters in a long standing family feud in a small Irish town over the course of a week.

Director Ian Fitzgibbon
Screenplay Kevin Barry
Irish Production Company Grand Pictures
Sales Agent Independent Films

Screening 
Sat 09 Feb, 16:30, Cinestar 2


Never Grow Old

When a ruthless gang of outlaws terrorise a sleepy frontier town, the local undertaker, Patrick, faces a profound moral dilemma and as the death toll rises and without law or religion to turn to, Patrick must find a way to defeat the outlaws as they turn their brutal attention to this family.

Director/Screenplay Ivan Kavanagh
Irish Production Company Ripple World Pictures
Sales Agent Metro International Entertainment

Screening 
Fri 08 Feb, 15:50, Zoo Palast Club A

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Roddy Doyle @ Fastnet Film Festival

Roddy Doyle will attend the 11th Fastnet Film Festival (Wednesday the 22nd to Sunday the 26th of May 2019).

The Fastnet Film Festival is a major showcase for Irish and International short film production, focusing on the craft of film, held in high regard on a national and international level for several years now.  The Festival this year will run a series of Seminars, Masterclasses and Workshops covering, Acting, Sound, Screenwriting, Casting, Auditioning, Creating Content on Your Mobile, Shorts to Feature, Costume and more. Fringe events include the Long Island Cinema, Live music, Drama, Book readings, Movie Quiz, Café viewing all over town and high quality free family entertainment for all.

 

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Irish Film London presents the UK Premiere of Katie Taylor film and Women in Film Panel

Irish Film London’s St Brigid’s Day Film Festival runs at Regent St Cinema on Sunday 3rd February at 6pm

Irish Film London, the organisation that champions the Irish film industry in the UK, will host the much-anticipated UK premiere of Katie, the award-winning documentary that offers an incredible and emotional insight into the realm of world champion boxer Katie Taylor. Described by British champion Anthony Joshua as ‘phenomenal’, the notoriously private Irish Olympic Gold medal winner has become the most decorated and celebrated female fighter of all time.

Katie Taylor has won six amateur European championships, five world amateur championships and an Olympic Gold Medal at London 2012. She turned professional after a disastrous campaign at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, which saw her spectacularly crash out in the first-round despite being the firm favourite to take successive Gold medals.  She won her first world title within a year and currently holds a perfect professional record of 12 straight wins, including the successful defence of her WBA and IBF World titles in December at Madison Square Garden. In March 2019 Taylor will fight to become the Undisputed Lightweight Champion of the World.

This film unravels the deeply personal reasons behind Taylor’s heart-breaking career low in Rio and shows the champion’s grit and determination to start over as a professional in one of the toughest industries for a woman to make her mark in. Despite many having written her off, Taylor allowed a small crew to document her journey as she worked to rebuild her career.

Directed by Ross Whitaker (Unbreakable: The Mark Pollock Story) and produced by Aideen O’Sullivan (When Ali Came to Ireland), the film has received critical acclaim internationally and won the Best Irish Feature Documentary award at the 2018 Galway Film Fleadh.

Kelly O’Connor, Founder and Programming Director at Irish Film London said:

“Katie Taylor will likely go down in history as one of the greatest boxers of all time. She is an inspiration for young women the world over, not just in sport. The film reveals astonishing insights about her journey to the top of what is one of the toughest industries for anyone to compete in. But this is so much more than a film about boxing; it explores the challenges of being a woman in a male dominated industry, being an Irish woman living abroad, and the personal journeys we face when forced to separate ourselves from our family and mentors.”

The screening of Katie is part of the Irish Embassy in London’s St. Brigid’s Day Festival – an annual celebration of Irish Women, which includes a number of other events taking place in London. The festival also reaches across the globe, with events at many Irish embassies, consulates and other Irish venues around the world.

The film will be preceded by a panel discussion, which will highlight some of Ireland’s most successful female professionals both behind and in front of the camera and reflect on the current climate for Irish women in the UK industry. Bringing together the monumental forces of the UK & Ireland’s major networks for women in Film & Television, Irish Film London presents panellists Dr. Susan Liddy (Women in Film & TV Ireland Chair), Anne Morrison (Women in Film & TV UK), Brooklyn and Mary Queen of Scots actress Eileen O’Higgins and producer Sienna Beckman. The discussion will be followed by a networking reception, free for panel ticket holders.

Tickets are available from www.regentstreetcinema.com/st-brigids-day-festival

Discounts are available with a code, which is the Irish word for women: MNA.

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13th Annual Capital Irish Film Festival

Solas Nua presents the 13th Annual Capital Irish Film Festival (CIFF) February 28th – March 3rd at AFI Silver in downtown Silver Spring. Celebrating Irish identity, culture and artistry, CIFF brings the best in contemporary Irish cinema to the Washington, DC, area.

The Festival opens with Nick Kelly’s crowd-pleasing buddy dramedy The Drummer & The Keeper, winner of the Best Irish First Feature at the 2017 Galway Film Fleadh, and closes with stirring documentary Lomax in Éirinn, a look at American ethnomusicologist Alan Lomax’s role in preserving Ireland’s rich folk music heritage. Other highlights include playwright Carmel Winter’s coming-of-age boxing drama Float Like a Butterfly, winner of the FIPRESCI Prize at the 2018 Toronto Film Festival; found-footage chiller The Devil’s Doorway, with director Aislinn Clarke in attendance; Don’t Leave Home, Ireland’s answer to Get Out, with director Michael Tully in attendance; highly anticipated horror The Hole in the Ground , fresh from Sundance; Ireland’s first stop-motion feature animation, Captain Morten And The Spider Queen; and hot-button documentary I, Dolours with journalist and producer Ed Moloney in attendance. Northern Irish actor Lalor Roddy  is set to attend the festival to discuss his roles in three of this year’s selections.

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Preview of Irish Films @ Dublin International Film Festival 2019

It’s always the best way to kick the new year into gear when the Dublin International Film Festival announce their schedule. This year there are treats, goodies and film fun for all. Below we take a gander at the Irish films hitting the festival screens.

The festival runs 20 February – 3 March 2019.

 

Papi Chulo (DIR/WRI: John Butler)

WED 20 FEB/6:00PM/8:30pm CINEWORLD

Papi Chulo

A solitary and alienated television weatherman “hires” a middle-aged Latino migrant worker to be his friend, in this darkly comedic reflection on class, ethnicity, and companionship in contemporary Los Angeles.

CAST: Matt Bomer, Alejandro Patiño, Elena Campbell-Martinez

Tickets (6pm)

Tickets (8.30pm)


When Hitchcock Met O’Casey (Brian O’Flaherty)

THU 21 FEB/6:15PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA

When Hitchcock Met O’Casey

It was a collaboration between one of Ireland’s most noted playwrights and cinema’s greatest directors, yet the 1930 release of Juno and the Paycock is often neglected in the repertoire of both men. Brian O’Flaherty’s documentary aims to find out why.

Tickets


Dublin on Screen

The First Was a Boy (Shaun Dunne) / Confinement(Trish McAdam) / There’s No Place Like Home (Mia Mullarkey and the Screen8 Participants)
FRI 22 FEB/6:30PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA

Dublin on Screen


A Girl From Mogadishu (Mary McGuckian)

Fri 22nd/8:30pm/Odeon Point Village 2

Based on the real life story of Ifrah Ahmed – youth leader and advocate against Female Genital Mutilation in Somalia and Horn of Africa.

CastAja Naomi King, Barkhad Abdi, Martha Canga Antonio


Dub Daze (DIR/WRI: Shane J. Collins)

SAT 23 FEB/2:00PM/ CINEWORLD

Dub Daze

Dan and Baz are two friends looking for kicks on their last day of school. Cork medical students Jack and Seán arrive in the capital to find their way amongst Ireland’s affluent youth, while songwriter Fi struggles to break through on the cut-throat Dublin music scene.

CAST: Jack Hudson, Derek Ugochukwu, Abdul Alshareef

Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 1 (Various)

SAT 23 FEB/6:00PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA
Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 1

Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 2 (Various)

SUN 24 FEB/8:15PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA
Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 2

 


Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 3 (Various)

MON 25 FEB/6:00PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA
Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 3

Floating Structures (Feargal Ward, Adrian Duncan)

MON 25 FEB/6:30PM/ IRISH FILM INSTITUTE
Floating Structures
A researcher travels across Europe, exploring an array of buildings and structures that seem other-worldly. Drawing on the ideas and visions of the great Irish engineer Peter Rice, the film explore the hinterlands that gave rise to these structures. Wandering from a quiet Bavarian town, to the streets of Paris, to the city of Seville, our past is sifted through and interlinked with precision and wonder

 


What Time is Death? (Paul Duane)

TUE 26 FEB/6:30PM/ IRISH FILM INSTITUTE
What Time is Death?
In 2017 Bill Drummond & Jimmy Cauty, formerly The KLF, returned after 23 years of silence – but they were no longer a pop group. They were now undertakers, planning to build a monument, the People’s Pyramid, out of 34,952 bricks made from the remains of dead people.

 


Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 4 (Various)

TUE 26 FEB/8:45PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA
Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 4

Dark Lies the Island (DIR: Ian Fitzgibbon WRI: Kevin Barry)

WED 27 FEB/6:15PM/ CINEWORLD
Dark Lies the Island
If you’re going to get involved with men in a small Irish town, they might as well be the Mannions – and Sara is involved up to her neck. The Mannions are a feuding family in the town of Dromord who are all set at each other. Sara is married to Daddy Mannion but holding a candle for her first love, his son Doggy. When she also gets involved with his brother, trouble looms.

 

CAST: Peter Coonan, Charlie Murphy, Pat Shortt, Moe Dunford

 


Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 5 (Various)

WED 27 FEB/8:40PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA
Virgin Media DIFF Shorts 5

Land Without God (Gerard Mannix Flynn, Maedhbh McMahon, Lotta Petronella)

THU 28 FEB/8:50PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA
Land Without God
This deeply personal documentary feature is a culmination of Mannix Flynn’s writings and experiences spanning over four decades. The film centres on Flynn and members of his own family as they recall the effects of decades of institutional abuse, and the impact it has had – and continues to have – on their lives.  The film asks the question: How does one exit the trauma buried deep in the bones of generations? A family’s journey into the dark side of the Irish State.

 


She’s Missing (DIR/WRI: Alexandra McGuinness)

FRI 1 MAR/8:40PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA
She’s Missing
Heidi’s best friend goes missing at a rodeo after meeting a mysterious man. Determined to find out what happened to her, she sets out across the desert, unveiling astonishing secrets and encountering the unexpected violence of life on the road. Crossing paths with several characters along the way, Heidi is determined to find her friend – but there’s an ominous presence on her tail.

 

CAST: Lucy Fry, Eiza González, Josh Hartnett, Christian Camargo

 


GAZA (Garry Keane, Andrew McConnell)

SAT 2 MAR/2:00PM/ CINEWORLD
GAZA
A portrait of the resilience of people in the most challenging of circumstances. Set among the communities who live in Gaza, the documentary aims to go beyond the reach of television news and politics in its account of these people and their daily lives. It’s the story of eloquent, funny and above all ordinary people as they endeavour to live meaningful lives in the shadows of perpetual conflict

 


Prisoners of the Moon (Johnny Gogan)

SAT 2nd Mar/4:30PM/Light House Cinema

This drama/creative documentary brings to life the story of Arthur Rudolph, a scientist who played a key role in NASA’s historic 1969 moon landing. He was one of a number of Nazi rocket scientists who assisted America as they tried to win the space race. The film examines Rudolph’s work and alleged involvement in war crimes, and screens as the fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing approaches.

CAST: Jim Norton, Cathy Belton, Marty Rea

Tickets


Greta (DIR: Neil Jordan WRI: Neil Jordan, Ray Wright)

SAT 2 MAR/8:10PM/ LIGHT HOUSE CINEMA

Greta

A sweet, naïve young woman is trying to make it on her own in New York City, Frances doesn’t think twice about returning the handbag she finds on the subway to its rightful owner. That owner is Greta an eccentric French piano teacher with a love for classical music and an aching loneliness. Having recently lost her mother, Frances quickly grows closer to widowed Greta. The two become fast friends – but Greta’s maternal charms begin to dissolve and grow increasingly disturbing as Frances discovers that nothing in Greta’s life is what it seems.

CAST: Chloë Grace Moretz, Maika Monroe, Isabelle Huppert

Tickets


Shooting the Mafia (Kim Longinotto)

SAT 2 MAR/8:20PM/ CINEWORLD

Shooting the Mafia

This documentary strips back the glamorous image of the Sicilian Mafia, showing the harsh reality of life, death and business at the hands of those who wield it. It does so through the eyes and lens of photographer Letizia Battaglia, who captured their brutality on her own terms. Fear and threats did not prevent her from documenting what has been described as her “archive of blood” in all of its raw power.

Tickets


Dirty God (DIR: Sacha Polak WRI: Susie Farrell, Sacha Polak)

Sun 3rd MAR/ 5:30pm/Light House Cinema

A young mother aims to rebuild her life following a vicious acid attack which left her seriously injured and with life-changing facial burns. As the impacts of her trauma on family life and relationships make themselves felt, she must dig deep to get her life back. In the lead role, Polak has cast newcomer Vicky Knight, herself a burns survivor.

CAST: Eliza Brady-Girard, Dana Marineci, Wendy Albiston

Tickets


Download programme here

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Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival Return

Papi Chulo

The 17th Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival, Ireland’s premier film event, returns to the capital from February 20th to March 3rd, with a packed programme, which features over 125 events across 12 days including the finest local and international feature films, short films and documentaries, along with a dedicated children’s and young people’s programme and a host of special events featuring  industry leaders. For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.diff.ie

Kicking off the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival in style will be the Opening Gala and Irish premiere of Papi Chulo, the new film from Irish director John Butler, known for the award winning Handsome Devil and The Stag. Joining John on the red carpet for the premiere will be the stars of the film, Matt Bomer, known for A Normal HeartMagic Mike and The Magnificent Seven, and his co-star Alejandro Patiño. The comedy drama tells the story of a well-heeled, lonely, gay TV weatherman who strikes up an unusual friendship with an older straight migrant worker from Mexico and deals with themes of friendship, class, ethnicity and economic migration.

Fans of cult TV show The Office will be thrilled to hear that Stephen Merchant visits the Festival for the premiere of his new movie, Fighting With My Family, bringing with him the true, colourful and crazy story of the rise of WWE Superstar Paige. Merchant wrote and directed the film, which tells the story of reformed gangster and former wrestler Ricky, his wife Julia, daughter Saraya and son Zak who make a living performing in tiny venues across the country.  Ricky and Julia want a better life for their children and when brother and sister get the chance to audition for WWE, it seems the family dream is coming true and all their troubles will be solved, but their family bonds are soon put to the test. Wrestling fans seeing the movie should also keep an eye out for a memorable on screen appearance from champion wrestler turned movie star, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson who also produced this film.

One of the most exciting talents to come from Ireland in recent years and 2019 BAFTA Rising Star Award nominee, Killarney actor Jessie Buckley, attends Virgin Media DIFF with her new film Wild Rose for the Closing Gala. Starring alongside the much-loved and twice Oscar-nominatedJulie Walters and Hotel Rwanda’s Sophie Okonedo, Jessie displays her considerable musical and dramatic talent as Rose-Lynn Harlan in this inspiring, infectiously joyous heart warmer, where Rose-Lynn dreams of getting out of Glasgow and emulating the country singers she idolises by making it as a singer in Nashville, but life decisions and circumstances soon find her facing what she perceives as a choice between family and stardom.

Other high profile guests to walk the red carpet at the Festival include Josh Hartnett (Pearl Harbour), Lucy Fry (Wolf Creek) and Eiza Gonzalez (Baby Driver) who visit for the world premiere of She’s Missing. The drama thriller by Irish writer and director Alexandra McGuinness is about a young woman, Heidi, whose best friend goes missing at a rodeo after meeting a mysterious man. She sets out across the desert, unveiling astonishing secrets and encountering the unexpected violence of life on the road.

Speaking about the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival 2019 programme, Grainne Humphreys, Festival Director said: “As well as celebrating the best of Irish film talent, the programme for this year’s festival once again features a global line-up including world premieres and visits from the industry’s best known stars. We’ve found some fantastic titles for this year and we’re looking forward to sharing these discoveries. Whether it’s feature films, documentaries exploring topical themes or a celebration of Charlie Chaplin’s iconic The Kid, the 2019 Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival definitely celebrates the love Irish people have for cinema and those who make it. We’re delighted to be working with Virgin Media as the festival’s title sponsor for three years too. They’re known for their association with the best movies and television content as Ireland’s leading connected internet provider and our partnership will allow us to bring some of the world’s most exciting cinema to a wider audience.”

As always, Virgin Media DIFF supports established and emerging home-grown talent and the programme is packed with a terrific line-up of new Irish features. Neil Jordan’s Greta, a psychological thriller about a lonely, mysterious widow whose friendship with a naïve young woman becomes increasingly disturbing. The film stars Kick-Ass’ Chloë Grace Moretz alongside César Award-winning French actress Isabelle Huppert whose performance is described as a dark, delicious treat; while Dark Lies The Island, written by Irish author Kevin Barry and starring some of our best acting talent including Pat Shortt, Charlie Murphy, Tommy Tiernan and Moe Dunford is a pitch-black comedy centring on a small Irish town over a week-long period.

Audiences’ continued love of documentaries is reflected in the 2019 programme. Maiden is the critically acclaimed sailing documentary centring on the first ever all-female crew to enter the Whitbread Round the World Race in 1989 skippered by Tracy Edwards and also featuring Irish woman Angela Heath on the crew. Irish produced Shooting the Mafia is Kim Longinotto’s powerful documentary, through the eyes and lens of photographer Letizia Battaglia, which strips back the glamorous image of the Sicilian Mafia, showing the harsh reality of life, death and business at the hands of those who wield it. Virgin Media DIFF also hosts the world premiere of Land Without God is a deeply personal documentary which movingly centres on Mannix Flynn and his family as they recall the effects of decades of institutional abuse, and the impact it had, and continues to have, on their lives.

This year’s shorts programme includes some exciting titles, including Psychic, the directorial debut by one of Irish cinema’s most respected actors, Brendan Gleeson, about a charismatic psychic and his two manipulative sons who are gaining a cult following, played by his real-life sons Domhnall and Brian. Oscar long listed and BAFTA nominated Wren Boys is the story of a Catholic priest from Cork who drives his nephew to prison to marry a maverick gay inmate on a bleak Stephen’s Day; while War Paint, written by and starring Yasmine Akram, who previously starred in TV’s Sherlock, is the dark story of an enigmatic narcissist who befriends a despondent loner from her book club and drags her on a gruesome misadventure.

The Inspirations Strand of the festival features movies chosen by some of Ireland’s best loved authors, including Tana French who selects Picnic At A Hanging Rock, Peter Weir’s 1975 classic, widely acclaimed for its sense of mystery, sexual fear and hysteria, stunning cinematography and cultural undertones; Liz Nugent has chosen Perfume: The Story of a Murderer starring Ben Whishaw as a perfumier who uses the scents most evocative to him to create his unique fragrances; and Sinead Gleeson picks Stanley Kubrick’s cult horror The Shining starring Jack Nicholson.

Virgin Media DIFF continues to recognise the new generation of film talent marking their place in the Irish film industry through the Discovery Award. The 2019 nominees are Writer/ Directors Alexandra McGuinness (She’s Missing), Oonagh Kearney (Five Letters To The Stranger Who Will Dissect My Brain) and Shane Collins (Dub Daze); Writers Darach McGarrigle (Low Tide) and Jonathan Hughes (Mother, Mary); Director Ian Hunt Duffy (Low Tide), Production Designer & Art Director Alice Vignoles-Russell (The Trap); Make Up Artist Madonna Bambino (Low Tide); and Producer Roisín Geraghty (Five Letters To The Stranger Who Will Dissect My Brain). Filmgoers will also have the chance select the Virgin Media Audience Award, their favourite film from the programme. Other awards include best Documentary and Short.

The Fantastic Flix strand of the festival for mini movie fans marks the 40th anniversary of one of pop culture’s most iconic movies, The Muppet Movie, and also celebrates difference and diversity in film with highlights including Rosie & Moussa which looks at embracing multiculturalism; Kenyan film Rafiki, a gorgeous LGBT film which shows how love can bloom even in difficult circumstances; and a visit to Dublin by Bo Burnham for the Irish premiere of his new movie Eighth Grade.

The Surprise Film continues to be one of the most popular events in the Virgin Media DIFF programme but, as always, its identity remains a tightly-guarded secret known only to the Festival Director. Another exciting event from the Festival’s Creative Catalyst series, which recognises the passionate advocates who are changing what we see on screen, is Sean Bailey in Conversation with Eoin Colfer and sees the author of the Artemis Fowl series chat with the President of Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production. A 25-year industry veteran, Bailey’s feature film producing credits include Disney’s Tron: Legacy and  Miramax’s Gone, Baby, Gone.

The Festival is known for setting the agenda of the year with its programme of outstanding Irish and international film. This week saw the announcement of the 2019 Oscar nominations with a number of titles which will be shown at the Festival receiving nods. Element Pictures’ The Favourite, which had a special preview with Director Yorgos Lanthimos at the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival in November, received ten nominations; Talal Derki’s Of Fathers and Sons, nominated for Documentary (Feature), centres on a radical Islamist family and their harsh existence as war rages around them in Syria; and from the shorts programme, Mother and Detainment were both nominated in the Short Film (Live Action) category.  From last year’s programme Paul Schrader, who also visited the festival, is nominated in the Writing (Original Screenplay) category forFirst Reformed.

Previously announced events include An Evening With David Shire, a career retrospective interview with the Academy Award and two-time Grammy winning composer hosted by Aedín Gormley from RTÉ Lyric FM’s Movies and Musicals; and the Irish premiere of Australian comedy dramaThe Merger, which will also tour to six other Irish venues around the country.

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Film Festivals 2019 – Here & Abroad

Keep an eye on film festivals here and Irish film festivals abroad

 

Film Festivals in Ireland:

Dublin Smartphone Film Festival (26th January 2019)

Subtitle European Film Festival (31st January – 3rd February 2019)

Psychoanalytic Film Festival (1 – 2 February 2019)

Silk Road Film FestivalDublin (5 – 9 February)

Rathmullan Film Fest Donegal (21 – 24 February 2019)

VM Dublin International Film Festival (20 February – 03 March 2019)

Cork French Film Festival (3 – 10 March 2019)

First Cut! Youth Film Festival (6 – 9 March 2019)

Killarney Mountain Festival  ( 10 March 2019)

See You Next Thursday Festival  (from 14th March on)

Dingle International Film Festival (21  24 March 2019)

Fresh Film Festival Limerick (25  30 March 2019)

Irish Adventure Film Festival  Westport, Co. Mayo (29 – 31 March  2019) 

International Student Documentary Festival  Cork (2 – 5 April)

East Asia Film Festival Ireland Dublin (11 – 14 April 2019)

Belfast Film Festival (11 20 April 2019)

Japanese Film Festival (6th April onwards nationwide)

Cinemagic International Film and Television Festival Dublin (May – June)

Corona Fastnet Short Film Festival Cork (22 – 26 May 2019)

Korean Film Festival Ireland (13 – 15 June 2019)

China Ireland International Film Festival (24 – 29 June 2019)

Beara Film Fest (6th July 2019)

Galway Film Fleadh (9 – 14 July 2019)

IFI Family Festival Dublin (26 – 28 July 2019)

Radical Film Network Conference Dublin (TBA)

GAZE International LGBT Film Festival Dublin (1  5 August 2019)

Respect Human Rights Film Festival Belfast (TBA)

Still Voices Short Film Festival Longford (15 – 18 August 2019)

Dublin Feminist Film Festival Dublin (22 24 August 2019)

Charlie Chaplin Comedy Festival Kerry  (23 – 25 August 2019)

Ireland Wildlife Film Festival Cork (14th September 2019)

Underground Cinema Festival Dublin  (31st August – 2nd September 2019)

Clare Island Film Festival (TBA)

Wexford Documentary Film Festival (TBA)

Cinemagic International Film and Television Festival Belfast (1st October – 3rd November 2019)

Guth Gafa Meath (20 – 22 September 2019)

IFI Documentary Festival  Dublin (26 – 29 September 2019)

Disappear Here Film Festival Donegal (27 – 29 September)

Spook Scene Cork  (TBA)

Dublin International Short Film and Music Festival (4 – 6 October 2019)

Dublin Arabic Film Festival (TBA)

IndieCork (6 – 13 October 2019)

OFFline Offaly (9 – 13 October 2019)

Dublin Greek Film Festival  (TBA)

Kerry Film Festival (17 21 October 2019)

The Clones Film Festival (25 28 October 2019)

Richard Harris International Film Festival Limerick (22 – 28 October 2019)

Limerick Film Festival (TBA)

IFI Horrorthon Dublin (24 – 28 October 2019)

Light Moves Festival (TBA)

Iffy Short Film Festival Dublin (6th July & November 2019)

Cork Film Festival (7 – 17 November 2019)

Subtitle European Film Kilkenny (25th November  1st December 2019)

Waterford Film Festival (22 – 24 November 2019)

Luminous Void Experimental Film Festival Dublin (TBA)

Junior Galway Film Fleadh (TBA)

Foyle Film Festival Derry (TBA)

IFI French Film Festival Dublin (TBA)

KINOPOLIS Polish Film Festival Dublin (TBA)

 

Irish Film Festivals Abroad:

Irish Film Festival New Jersey (8 – 9 February 2019)

Capital Irish Film Festival Washington (28th February – 3rd March 2019)

Chicago Irish Film Festival (28th February – 3rd March 2019)

Toronto Irish Film Festival (1 – 3 March 2019)

Irish Film Festival Boston (22 – 24 March 2019)

Irish Film Festa Rome (27 – 31 March 2019)

Irish Film Festival Ottawa (29 – 31 March 2019)

Irish Film Festival Sydney (1 – 5 May), Melbourne (9 – 12 May 2019)

Irish Reels Film Festival Seattle (16 – 17 March 2019)

Celtic Media Festival Isle Aviemore  (4 – 6 June 2019)

Baton Rouge Irish Film Festival (26 – 27 July 2019)

British & Irish Film Festival (13-22 September 2019)

Syracuse Contemporary Irish Film Festival (13 – 16 November 2019))

Festival of Irish CinemaWarsaw (TBA)

San Francisco Irish Film Festival(TBA)

The Irish American Movie Hooley   (TBA)

Irish Reels Film Festival Seattle (TBA)

Irish Screen AmericaLos Angeles(TBA)

Irish Screen America New York  (TBA)

Irish Film Festival London(TBA)

Vancouver Irish Film Festival (TBA)

This list will be updated throughout the year as festival dates are announced.

If there’s a festival you are involved with or know of that we haven’t listed, please do let us know at filmireland@gmail.com

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Capital Irish Film Festival: Chairman, Paddy Meskell & Director, Pat Reilly

 

John Collins spoke to Chairman of the Capital Irish Film Festival, Paddy Meskell and Festival Director Pat Reilly about the origins and evolution of the festival, the importance of an Irish film festival in Washington and the challenges the festival faces.

The Capital Irish Film Festival celebrates annually the best of new Irish features, documentaries, shorts and animation, and particularly welcomes Irish language films.

 

 

 

Film Ireland Podcasts

 

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‘Tradition’ Screens @ Chicago Irish Film Festival

Tradition, the second feature film from OC Productions, has been selected to have its US premiere at the Chicago Irish Film Festival, which takes place in February 2019.

Directed by Damian O Callaghan, Tradition tells the story of a Judge, who, on his last day on the bench, finds himself presiding over the most controversial case – his court – and his town has ever seen.

Written by Claire Corrigan and Damian O Callaghan with a cast that includes Paul Ronan , Pascal Scott, James Daly, Brian Harty, Laura Reidy and Brendan Grace.

 

 

Keep an eye on film festivals here and Irish film festivals abroad here

 

 

                                               

 

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Capital Irish Film Festival: Editor, Tony Cranstoun

John Collins spoke to Tony Cranstoun, editor of A Date for Mad Mary and The Farthest, which closed this year’s Capital Irish Film Festival in Washington D.C. John was good enough to send us on his recording of their conversation.

The Farthest chronicles NASA’s 1977 launch of twin space probes, sent to capture images of remote planets and bear messages from Earth.
 

The Farthest screened on 4th March 2018 as part of the Capital Irish Film Festival

 

Film Ireland Podcasts

 

InConversation: Tony Cranstoun

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Festival Report: Hamptons International Film Festival

Ronan O’Sullivan reports from the 26th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival, which included screenings of The Favourite and Making The Grade. Along the way Ronan shared a cigarette with Eva Trobisch, director of Alles Ist Gut.

 

The Hamptons consist of a number of towns on the east end of Long Island, one hundred miles east of New York City.  Montauk, Amagansett, East Hampton, South Hampton, Hampton Bays, Sagaponack and Sag Harbor, are a few of these ‘hamlets’, and the further east you go, the more expensive things become. I spent four of the festival days in East Hampton, a town which could have been lifted straight out of an F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel. Property prices in Dublin may be scary, but the cost of some of these homes on the Atlantic is phenomenal. The Hampton Film Festival is where the famous mingle with the rich and glamorous, not unlike The Cannes Film Festival.

This year marked the 26th year of the HIFF.  Hundreds of movies were to be seen, ranging from shorts, documentaries to narrative feature films. Every cinema on the East End was booked out for the duration of the festival, which usually takes place over the Columbus holiday weekend (Oct 12th). Screenings were often followed by Q&As with actors/directors.

My introduction to the festival began on Friday morning at a #MeToo filmmakers’ talk in Rowdy Hall, a local restaurant. Three women filmmakers spoke to a capacity crowd. They spoke from their heart with the courage of their convictions. Nancy Schwartzman, one of the speakers warned all males present that even if they weren’t involved in abuse scandals – to be on their bended knees thanking females for any and all sexual relations. No men spoke at the Q&A. I approached the three speakers afterwards, in particular Nancy Schwartzman. She laughed when I brought up her earlier opinion, admitting it was a little extreme. What they said by and large made a lot of sense, and in person they were warm, less intimidating and not as extreme. 

The two Irish films on offer were The Favourite (dir. Yorgos Lanthimos) and Making the Grade (dir. Ken Wardop). Mike Trentacosti, a volunteer from Babylon, Long island, sampled the reaction to Making the Grade and considered it overwhelmingly positive. This view was reflected in an audience vote. Toni Ross, a founding member of the HIFF and a local restaurant owner also gave it two thumbs up.  It made her cry, and the cinematography was beautiful, she said.  She wanted to know if all Irish houses were similar to the kind depicted in the film. 

Some movies are “Spotlight” films, meaning to attend their screening needs a special invitation. Unfortunately, The Favourite was one such film. I was unable to attend the screening or speak to any of the cast or crew.  It was awarded two prizes at the Venice Film Festival, the Grand Jury Prize and Best Actress Award for Olivia Colman. It is Lanthimos’ second feature film working with Rachael Weiss.  The Favourite was shot by Element Pictures. Screen Ireland helped with the funding. It is not the first time Lanthimos has secured funding through SI.  The movie will be released in the US later this year and in Ireland early in the new year.

The HIFF is renowned for its ‘Breakthrough Performance Program’.  Former breakthrough artists include Jessica Chastain and Emily Blunt.  This year, the festival selected Cory Michael Smith, Amanda Stenberg and Kayli Carter.  Smith plays the Riddler in the ‘Gotham’ TV series and currently plays the lead in an indie production 1985.  Stenberg gives a riveting performance in The Hate U Give, playing a high-school student who witnesses the shooting of her childhood friend by the police. Carter who had a small part in Netflix’ Godless will next star in Private Life for the same company. Full-house audiences gave these actors very warm, receptions.  All three spoke about their lives as actors and discussed how their careers are progressing. Smith joked about the dilemma of acting in independent films versus working in TV roles to make a living. Carter, born and raised in Oviedo, Florida, grew up in a farming community and had no idea that acting would shape her life. 

I met Eva Trobisch almost by mistake in a small restaurant off East Hampton’s Main Street. A waitress pointed out a vacant chair and a half-finished glass of white wine, informing me that a German director was present if I wanted to stick around. I knew of only one German film represented at the HIFF, which was Alles Ist Gut. The movie has received extremely good reviews as has its female lead, Aenne Schwarz. So I stuck around. A short-haired woman soon appeared with an apprehensive smile and immediately I liked her.  I introduced myself as a contributing writer for Film Ireland. She smiled again, telling me that Alles ist Gut has been selected for screening at the Kilkenny SUBTITLE European Film Festival,running 19 – 25 November.  She asked for a cigarette and I gave her a few, which she carefully tucked into her bag and I liked her even more.  Eva wasn’t rich, and she wasn’t famous.  She had just travelled alone from Germany and was nursing a glass of wine at the bar. Alles Ist Gut was set for screening at 8:30, an hour from now. She struck a lonely figure, very unusual in a town populated by publicity seekers and film pushers. She gave me several minutes to ask a few questions on a bench outside Babette’s Restaurant.  Her command of English was very good, and she spoke with a disarming, soft German accent.

How long did it take you to write Alles Ist Gut?

I think I was one and a half years writing it. I wrote it during my screenwriting masters at the London Film School, which I can very much recommend, and  then I came back with the second draft, and then another four drafts…

And how did you get the funding?

There was a broadcaster involved, a German broadcaster with very little money, like €60,000 and then my school – since it’s a graduation film and then we had German film funding – Bavarian film funding worth €150,000.  So, all in all we had €260,000 which is nothing compared to other films.  So, we all earned €8.50 an hour.  The entire crew, the actors, everyone.

You said you were in the London Film School?

I was studying Directing at the Munich Film School, but I was longing for a deeper understanding of screenwriting so I went to London Film School.  First, I went to Tisch School in New York (Tisch School of the Arts) for half a year and after that I did a screenwriting masters from the very first idea to the second draft – you go step by step in one year.

If the film makes money; does everybody get more money!?

(Eva nods her head and smiles)

Perfect. And it’s going to make money I hope? 

Yeah!  It looks good.  It’s been picked up for France and in Germany it’s going to be released, and Austria, and Switzerland is confirmed now.  And other countries are coming… 

Hopefully we will get America on board…

(Laughs) Yeah…

What are the plans for the future?

Doing my next film (big grin)

Do you have it written?

I have a treatment quite developed.  Yes, and we will apply for funding. To write it next year and then shoot it 2020 I guess.

 

And then she had to leave, slinging her bag over her shoulder with a goodbye smile.  She had to introduce her film and it was getting late. I watched from my friend’s pick-up truck as she weaved her way towards the movie theatre, losing sight of her in a snake of car headlights and a slow-moving line of pedestrians. 

Alles Ist Gut won the Big One the following day: The Best Narrative Feature of the Hamptons International Film Festival.  It was up against a number of Hollywood greats. I expect we will be watching Eva Trobisch’s films for years to come.  You can catch Alles Ist Gut at the Kilkenny Film Festival and hopefully Eva will be in attendance. 

No article about the HIFF would be complete without an honourable mention to a short film called The Hidden. Throughout the five days of the festival, this virtual reality short film played in a barn on a local property known as the Mulford farm. The experience was open to the public, free and very well attended. Earlier, its creators BJ Schwartz, Anne Lukowski, James Della Famina and Bruce Vaughn (Music by Ched Tolliver) also spoke in Rowdy Hall.  The Hidden was my first experience of a virtual reality narrative film. I watched it with two friends, an off-duty East Hampton cop and a fellow Irish man. We wore VR goggles and headphones throughout, an experience in itself. The story concerns itself with an ICE (US Immigration and Customs Enforcement) raid on an unsuspecting Latino family whose father is hiding in the house. The movie was shot with 8 different cameras giving a full 360-degree point of view. You could turn and look over your shoulder to see what was behind you. It was an eerie, spectacular experience. The off-duty cop had a few issues with the narrative. He felt that the ICE agents were at times unprofessional and negatively portrayed.   

I came into contact with many films at the festival. I would highly recommend a few of them, including the Best Documentary Winner, Divide and Conquer. It’s the story of Roger Ailes and is directed by Alexis Bloom.  I must stress that with so many films screened, I only had the opportunity to see a fraction.

Kindergarten Teacher, directed by Sara Colangelo and starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and Gael García Bernal.

Wildlife, directed by Paul Dano, and starring Carey Mullingan, Jake Gyllenhaal and Ed Oxenbould.

Birds of Passage, directed by Christina Gallego and Ciro Guerra, from Colombia

First Man directed by Damien Chazelle starring Ryan Gosling and Claire Foy.

A beautiful, bright sun shone throughout the HIFF autumn weekend. I was made most welcome by the festival staff and my sincere thanks to the many organisers and volunteers for making the experience so pleasant. 

I have attended a few festivals in my time, some of which could learn from the courtesy and kindness on display at the HIFF, where I was treated like an equal, never separate from the elite.

  

Ronan O’Sullivan

 

The 26th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival took place 4 – 8 October 2018

 

Ronan O’Sullivan is a filmmaker and photographer with a degree in Film Production from the City University of New York, Brooklyn College. He has shot many short films, music videos and commercials. He also tutors film and photography for Transition Year students in Dublin.  He has a feature film screenplay ‘Scorched’ under development with a NYC-based production company.

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Irish Film Review @ Cork Film Festival: One Million American Dreams

Loretta Goff discovers the secrets of New York’s mass graves in Brendan Byrne’s One Million American Dreams.

Brendan Byrne’s One Million American Dreams brings into focus the often unnoticed Hart Island, a small New York City island that is used as a burial ground for the city’s unclaimed dead, and for those whose families cannot afford burial expenses. Byrne’s documentary takes a personal approach to the subject matter, following the stories of four families with members buried here. In doing so, he removes the anonymity of the Hart Island cemetery, reinscribing it with the narratives of these individuals and providing a sort of commemoration for them that is not fully offered on the island itself.

Introducing the film at the 63rd Cork Film Festival, Byrne commented on his own relationship with New York City, from his first visit at age 17, when he was in complete awe, to his multiple returns that have also revealed the city’s tougher edge. When he was made aware of a two-minute recorded news piece on Hart Island he realised it deserved more attention and that he could make a whole film about it. This led to One Million American Dreams, which he describes as “a difficult love letter to the place I’ve had a longstanding love affair with” that takes a “deeper look into the soul” of the city.

Several animated segments in the documentary, along with narration by Sam Rockwell, provide viewers with the necessary historical details of Hart Island, which are expanded upon in interviews with scholars, journalists and politicians. We learn that burials began there in 1869, with over one million individuals laid to rest on the island to date, that it was also used as a Union Civil War camp (amongst other things) and that it is currently run by the Department of Correction, with inmates employed to bury the bodies and no access to the general public. These details are made more visceral with the striking animations that accompany them. One of these, in particular, stands out; it shows layers upon layers of nameless coffins piling up below the island, forming it, but also giving shape to a human head, reminding us that each coffin contains an individual that had a part to play in the story of New York City, and that those who are marginalised should not be forgotten or cast away.

Our attention is turned to some of these marginalised individuals through the stories of the families affected by loved ones’ burials on Hart Island. We meet an African-American Vietnam War Vet whose baby daughter was buried there while he was away, a Cuban family whose father died alone with dementia in the city, a Puerto Rican woman whose stillborn child was due to be buried on Hart Island and the family of a man suffering from drug and alcohol addiction who ultimately ended up there without his family’s knowledge. Through their stories, not only is Hart Island personalised, but we are confronted with the deeper underlying issues affecting New York City and contemporary American culture more broadly—racism, immigration, substance abuse and poverty.

Commenting on his film in a Q&A after the screening, Byrne noted that he used the cemetery on Hart Island, and the stories that emerged from it, as a “frame to confront issues that still face America”, which are threaded throughout the film. We see this in the stories of the individuals that the documentary follows, but also through the film’s carefully crafted cinematography. This captures the beauty of New York City—in the bright lights of Time’s Square, the skyline and diverse groups of people—but also its struggles and darker sides, focusing attention on the homeless sitting overlooked on busy streets and those that exist in the fringes. A particularly striking image follows the ferry travelling out to Hart Island as it, and the island are engulfed in fog. This offers a skillful visual depiction of the islands shrouded nature, cast into the shadows of the dazzling city.

Discussing the process of making the film, Byrne noted that the project as a whole took between three and four years (with 18 months of filming). He commented that it was a process to get the stories of the individuals, but that “without their stories we wouldn’t have the film”. It is the honesty of these that resonates with the audience, offering the documentary’s powerful social commentary.

One Million American Dreams is a timely, well-crafted, poignantly shot and animated documentary that speaks to a number of contemporary social issues neatly encapsulated by Hart Island—the story of which is remarkable in itself.

 

One Million American Dreams screened on Saturday, 17th November 2018 as part of the Cork Film Festival   (9 – 18 November)

 

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