The JDIFF (Jameson Dublin International Film Festival) officially launched its programme in a presentation at the Lighthouse Cinema last night, 23rd January. The event, opened by actors Killian Scott (Love / Hate) and Kelly Campbell (One Hundred Mornings), was a showcase of the festival’s lineup for the year. Grainne Humphreys, Festival Director, listed off the impressive range of films and talent coming to Dublin in the next few weeks. Film luminaries such as Costa-Gavras, Robert Towne, Frank Langella, Tim Roth, Mary Harron, Joss Whedon and many more will be attendance this year. The festival’s guest of honour this year is Danny DeVito and will be attending two screenings, War of the Roses and LA Confidential – the latter as part of the Jameson Cult Film Club.
The focus this year for the festival is on documentaries. The film will feature the world premiere of Blood Rising, the story of Juarez, Mexico’s corrupt power structures and the devastating effects it has on the people, particularly women. Directed by Mark McLoughlin and Brian Maguire, the documentary will close out the festival and is part of the Arts Council’s Reel Art documentary programme. Broken Song, a documentary that follows the trials and tribulations of three Northside Dublin hip-hop artists promises to be an engaging and intimate look into the lives of struggling musicians in Ireland today. Directed by Claire Dix, the screening will also have the director herself in attendance. As well as documentaries, the festival this year will also continue its ‘Out of the Past’ season with some fantastic films on show. Fritz Lang’s follow-up to Metropolis, Spies, will be screened along with a live musical accompaniment by Gunther Buchwald. Also, Billy Wilder’s Sunset Blvd. and Jerry Schatzberg’s Scarecrow will also be screened.
The Festival has something for everyone; not just die-hard film buffs. The first screening of Ryan Gosling’s new film, The Place Beyond The Pines, promises to be a darking and gripping crime drama to rival 2011’s Drive. Directed by Derek Cianfrance, the film is his follow-up to 2010’s Blue Valentine – also starring Ryan Gosling. Unfortunately, Ryan Gosling won’t be in attendance – or so we’ve been told! Dario Marianelli, the composer of such films like V For Vendetta, Atonement’ and Pride & Prejudice, will be attending the festival and performing with the RTE Concert Orchestra at the NCH. For film music lovers, it promises to be a fantastic night as Marianelli plays through some of the best of his work.
As well as screenings, the Festival will also host a number of workshops and masterclasses in screenwriting, directing, producing and much, much more. Chief among them is Hollywood legend, Robert Towne – delivering a keynote speech at the festival. Festival director Grainne Humphreys broke from her prepared speech on the night to gush about Towne rattling off anecdotes from his script-doctoring of The Godfather during the planning stages of his visit. Casting expert Margery Simkin – who worked as casting director for Tony Scott, Martin Brest, James Cameron, Terry Gilliam and many others – will be giving a talk on, naturally, casting in films. Comedy group, The Rubberbandits, will also be holding a talk on ‘The Economics of YouTube’ which promises to be an interesting event.
Overall, JDIFF looks set to be a feast for film lovers of all stripes. With a diverse range of films on offer and film legends in attendance, JDIFF promises to be a highlight of the year.