Shorts at the Fleadh – New Irish Shorts 7 – IFB Premieres

The 2015 Galway Film Fleadh , July 7th to 12th, includes 11 programmes featuring Irish short film, two of these are for local films, with the other 9 featuring films from throughout the island. In addition the festival will host a Short Film Slam on the closing day of the festival, where the first two minutes of each short film will be played and then the audience will vote on whether or not to watch the rest. In addition the Fleadh will feature the One Minute Film Festival, a film festival within a film festival that showcases the best in super-short filmmaking, where every moment counts.

We continue our look at the short films of the Fleadh with New Irish Shorts 7, which screens at 12pm on Saturday July 11th. The programme features the premiere screenings of a number of short films produced under Bord Scannán na hÉireann/Irish Film Board’s Signatures, Frameworks and Gearrscannáin schemes.


The first film is Brian Deane’s Blight. The film follows a priest who is summoned to a remote Island to help save the life of a young girl who is being tortured by a sinister entity. Blight features George Blagden (Wrath of the Titans), Alicia Gerrard (Ripper Street), Joe Hanley (Batman Begins), Tristan Heanue (Skunky Dog), Gary Murphy (The German), Matthew O’Brien (Volkswagen Joe), andMarie Ruane (Foxes). The short is written by Matthew Roche (Atrophy) and produced by Anna O‚ÄôMalley for TW Films Ltd.


Second up is animated tale City of Roses. One Halloween night a smouldering suitcase was pulled off a bonfire in Dublin and thus was saved a true story of love, loss and hope. Written and directed by Andrew Kavanagh, it features voice acting from Peter Coonan (Love/Hate), Aoibhin Garrihy (Fair City), and Sean Doyle (Killing Bono). The short is produced by Jackie Leonard of Kavaleer Productions.


Film three is Tomasz Woszczynski’s Filleadh an Athair. The film, which is written and directed by Woszczynski, sees a man gets out of prison to see his adult daughter. Shame, rejection, trouble with his family and his freedom ensues. The short features Joe Byrne (Blue Dawn), Ger Consodine (Should the Sun Go Down on Galway Che?), Steve Gunn (Opus K), Emer O’Carroll (An tOile√°n), Conor Scott (Get Up and Go), and Ailbhe O’Tiomain. Filleadh an Athair is produced by Richard Bolger for Five Knight Films.


The fourth film in the IFB programme is animation Unhinged. The film is written and directed by Tom Caulfield. The squeaky hinge gets the oil. But when the squeak escapes the oil, its sure to get you! The film is produced by Barry O’Donoghue for Studio Okinami.


Film five is writer/director Katherine Canty’s January Hymn. The film is a reflection on the intangible experience of grief, that sees Clara return home for the first anniversary of her father’s death. January Hymn stars Niamh Algar (From the Dark), Ally Ni Chiarain (Miscalculation), Joe Mullins (Pilgrim Hill), and Aisling McLaughlin (Past Pupil). The short is produced by Tanja Harney for January Hymn Productions.


Film number six is another animated tale, titled The Great Fall. The film takes place up in the clouds, where a nervous young raindrop is terrified about his first fall to earth as an imminent storm rapidly approaches. The Great Fall features the voices of Aileen Mythen, Mia Murphy and Anne Byrne. The short is written by Ben Cleary and produced by Michael Algar for Zink Films Ltd.


The seventh film is writer/director Seán Breathnach Maidhm. The film sees an autistic boy’s world is thrown into chaos as he searches for his mother. Maidhm stars Tara Breathnach (A Nightingale Falling) and Harry Pender. The short is produced by Laura Ní Cheallaigh for Magamedia.


Film number 8 in this strand is another animated tale. Geist is written and directed by Sean Mullen, Ben Harper and Alex Sherwood, and sees a shipwrecked fisherman take shelter in an abandoned house on a remote island, only to realise that he is not alone. The short is produced by Daniel Spencer for Giant Animation.


The ninth film in this programme is the animated A Coat Worth Stealing. The film is written and directed by Jack O’Shea, and sees a man follow the orders of a dog to wear a coat with impossible pockets. It is produced by Damien Byrne for STILL Films.


How Was Your Day?, directed by Damien O’Donnell and adapted from a short story by Nollaig Rowan, is film number 10. This short centres on a woman who is excited about the approaching birth of her first child. How Was Your Day? stars Eileen Walsh (The Magdalene Sisters), Se√°n Duggan (Killing Bono), Aidan McCardle (The Duchess), Janet Moran (The Butcher Boy), Eamonn Hunt (The Stag), and Molly McNamara. It is produced by Emmaline Dowling for Suitable Films Limited.


The last film in this programme, and the eleventh comes from You’re Ugly Too director Mark Noonan. Titled They Shoot People, the short sees Noonan reteam with You’re Ugly Too star Lauren Kinsella. Kinsella plays Jane, a neglected 12 year-old working in the family shooting range. She’s always been good with guns and one evening at the local carnival she gets a chance to prove it – forever altering the course of her young life. They Shoot People is produced by John Keville for Savage Productions.

The IFB has three short film financing strands, each of which are represented here. Signatures is a scheme for the making of live-action, fiction films that act as a proving-ground for Irish creative talents aspiring to write, direct and produce films for the cinema. Gearrscannáin is a scheme to produce Irish language short films that will appeal to a general audience. And Frameworks, which is aimed at animation, is funded by Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB), RTÉ and the Arts Council.

New Irish Shorts 7 screens in the Town Hall Theatre at 12pm on Saturday July 11th.

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