Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB) has announced the world premiere of the short films made under its Short Stories film scheme which will take place at the 2017 Galway Film Fleadh.
The films screening include Neon by Rioghnach Ni Ghioghair, Nice Night For It by Rachel Carey, A Different Kind of Day by Maria Doyle Kennedy, Bellwether by Caroline Campbell, and Deposits by Trevor Courtney.
As the IFB continues to recognise the importance of supporting female talent, 80% of the successful short films have a female director attached, with 60% having a female producer on board. The first year of the Short Stories scheme includes performances from well-known Irish actors including Antonia Campbell Hughes (Albert Nobbs, Kelly and Victor) and Emmet Kirwan (Heartbreak, Wave, ’71) and the directorial debut from acclaimed Irish actress and singer Maria Doyle Kennedy (Orphan Black, The Tudors, Sing Street).
Also making her directorial debut is Rioghnach Ni Ghrioghair, whose short film Neon is a break-neck, cyberpunk action sci-fi set in a future decaying world. A sacrificial population is tasked with carving out a clean passage with neon lights between pockets of surviving civilisation. The film is produced by Flaminia Iacoviella.
A Different Kind of Day presents Maria Doyle Kennedy’s directorial debut with a story of a teenage couple who have special needs. When they are attacked by a gang, their response to the incident changes the day for everyone. A Different Kind of Day is produced by Kieran Kennedy.
Starring renowned Irish theatre actor and IFTA-winner Emmet Kirwan (Dublin Oldschool, RIOT, Heartbreak) alongside Clare Dunne, Nice Night For It, tells the story of an insomniac, who, ground down by endless nights awake, takes a night-time walk where she finds comfort in a fellow sleepless stranger. The short film is directed by Rachel Carey and produced by Fiona Kinsella.
Written and directed by Caroline Campbell, Bellwether is set on a remote beach in the west of Ireland where the audience meets Anne as she begins her journey to become the Bellwether—the sheep that can lead the flock. Ailish Bracken produced the short, which stars Antonia Campbell Hughes, best known for her work in films such Breakfast on Pluto and Albert Nobbs alongside the British TV series, Lead Balloon.
Trevor Courtney’s animated short Deposits, is produced by Michael Algar and tells a story of the Disappeared – the remains of those murdered by the Provisional Irish Republican Army and those killed centuries earlier by the British Redcoats. In common they are buried without trace, but are connected by hopes for discovery. The short is written by Adrienne Michel-Long who previously directed two award-winning IFB shorts: Bye Bye Inkhead (2001) and Luka (2004).
The IFB will also present Steve Kenny’s Time Traveller, the first film from the IFB’s Focus Shorts film scheme. Starring Barry Ward, Time Traveller sees a Back To The Future-obsessed boy striving to finish building his own DeLorean replica before his family are evicted from their halting site. Time Traveller is produced by Collie McCarthy
We are proud to present the IFB Short Stories scheme, which we hope will be enjoyed by Irish and international audiences, and will further develop the careers of the filmmakers involved. I was particularly pleased to see that 50% of the applications we received for this scheme were from female writers and directors, which translated into 80% of female directors attached to the final selection of films. The excellent work presented here also highlights the high quality of creative Irish writers, directors, actors and crew coming through which I am delighted to see.
James Hickey, Chief Executive – Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board
Short Stories is a scheme for the making of live-action or animated short films and this year’s selection is the first batch of short films to premiere from the scheme which was inaugurated last year. The world premiere of the 2017 IFB short films will take place in Galway’s Town Hall on Saturday, July 15th at 12pm.