#IrishAbroad: Graham Cantwell’s LILY wins at the Santa Fe Film Festival

Writer/director Graham Cantwell’s new¬†LGBT short-drama LILY has won again, this time picking up Best Narrative Short and a Courage in Film nod for Cantwell. The film has previously won the¬†Oscar qualifying Tiernan McBride Best Short Drama Award at the 28th Galway Film Fleadh.

The film tells the story of Lily, a girl with a secret, on the cusp of becoming a young woman. With her best friend, the fiercely loyal and flamboyant Simon, she navigates the treacherous waters of school life. When a misunderstanding with the beautiful and popular Violet leads to a vicious attack, Lily is faced with the greatest challenge of her young life.

LILY stars Gaiety graduate Clara Harte and introduces Dean Quinn in the leading roles of Lily and Simon respectively. Amy-Joyce Hastings (The Callback Queen), Paul Ronan (Veronica Guerin), Aisling O’Neill (Fair City), and Lynette Callaghan (The Yank) come together as the supporting cast, alongside newcomers Leah McNamara and Hallie Ridgeway.

Lily Santa Fe Win
Graham Cantwell, Amy Joyce-Hastings, and Clara Harte pictured with their awards for Lily


Writer and director, Cantwell is known for directing feature film Anton which was nominated for three Irish Film and Television Awards in 2009. His directorial debut A Dublin Story was shortlisted for Academy Award Nomination in 2004 having picked up several film festival awards. In 2014 he co-authored the screenplay for Filmbase feature Poison Pen along with Eoin Colfer. Most recently he wrote and directed a romantic comedy set in the London film industry, The Callback Queen, which was released in the UK and Ireland in 2015 and picked up two IFTA nominations at the 2016 Awards in April.


Sharon Cronin, Indah Pietersz, Emma Carlsson and Ciaran Byrne produced, with Eimear Ennis Graham as Director of Photography, Sonja Mohlich as Costume Designer, Tom North as production designer, Marina Granville as Key Makeup and Hair Artist and Keith Ward as Stunt Coordinator. The score was created by two time Emmy nominated composer Joseph Conlan. The film also features music tracks by JD Kelleher, Peter M Smith and Hello Monroe. LILY was executive produced by Film Venture, Filmbase and Powerscourt Pictures and was shot on several locations in and around Dublin.

LILY will be internationally distributed by Network Ireland Television. For more information on the film follow it on Facebook and Twitter.

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