Love is a Sting, directed by Vincent Gallagher, has won the Best Foreign Film award at the prestigious L.A. Shorts Fest in downtown Los Angeles. The category is recognised by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as an Oscar qualifying award. Love is a Sting writer Benjamin Cleary was honoured with the same award last year for Stutterer, which allowed the film to progress to the Oscar short list and eventually saw him win the Academy Award for best short film.

This is the second Oscar qualifying award Love is a Sting has won, the first being the Grand Prix at the 60th Cork Film Festival last November.

Both these honours will see Love is a Sting put forward for consideration to the 2017 Academy Awards in the Best Short Film (Live Action) category. It will be joined on that list by Graham Cantwell’s LILY, which won the Oscar qualifying Tiernan McBride award at the Galway Film Fleadh.

Love is a Sting tells the story of struggling children’s book writer Harold Finch, who gains an unexpected house guest in the form of an ageing, hyper-intelligent mosquito named Anabel. The film is narrated by Ciarán Hinds (Game of Thrones) and stars Seán T. Ó Meallaigh (An Klondike)

Second to None, another short film, written and directed by Gallagher enjoys its International Premiere at the world-famous Toronto International Film Festival this week. Second to None is a stop motion animated film funded by the Irish Film Board. It is one of 9 Irish films playing in TIFF this year.

Second to None has already made a splash having won both the James Horgan Award for best animated Short and the Don Quijote Award for Best Animation at the 2016 Galway Film Fkeadh. The former of these awards is also Oscar qualifying in the Best Short Film (Animation) category, which potentially could see both of Gallagher’s films be considered in separate categories at the Oscars next year.

Love is a Sting was produced by Ian Hunt Duffy for Fail Safe Films and received funding from RTE/Filmbase.

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