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One of Ireland’s biggest film festivals every year, the Galway Film Fleadh begins next Tuesday 10th July, kicking off a week of fantastic films from at home and abroad. And though it doesn’t happen here in Dublin, we eagerly anticipate many of the festival’s films, not least of which includes Mother, the 2017 Galway Film Centre/RTÉ Short Film Commission. The short, starring The Young Offenders’ Hilary Rose and Lochlann O’Mearáin of Ros na Rú, developed from a script by Jonathan Hughes, directed by Natasha Waugh and produced by Sharon Cronin, has an eye-catching premise. It tells the story of Grace, a mother with an ideal happy family; a loving husband and two wonderful children. But when her husband arrives home one day with a brand new kitchen appliance, she slowly starts to realize that there might not be room for both of them at home. It’s a quirky comedy light on dialogue, with an intriguing dark streak. The project received just under €15,000 in funding as part of the commission, as well as the contribution’s of Script Editor Deirdre Roycroft and director Deabhla Walsh (Penny Dreadful, Fargo, The Punisher, Emmy Award winner for Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special, Little Dorrit) as mentors on the scheme. The short will premiere at the Fleadh next week, and ahead of the Mother‘s big day, we caught up with Natasha Waugh to discuss the production, the mentoring aspect of the GFC/RTE programme, and working with a very unique performer…

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Young filmmakers Matthew Roche and Elliot Milofsky are putting out interesting short films at a fast pace, through their production company Extra Extra. Their latest short, Philomela is the story of a woman who experiences a break-in to her home and is forced to keep the intruder. Though Mela attempts to persuade the guards, her parents and others of the injustice, her words go unheard and the psychological toll on her hits hard. Blunt and stark, it nevertheless makes its point very clearly. It isn’t difficult to figure out the political subtext of Roche and Milofsky’s film, this week in particular. Film In Dublin spoke with Matthew Roche about the thinking behind the short.

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On June 27th 2003, the career of aspiring actor Greg Sestero was changed forever with the release of The Room. The bizarre, terrible but captivating film, the So Bad It’s Good cult classic to rule them all, made improbable stars out of Greg and his co-star, director, friend and former roommate, Tommy Wiseau, with the pair frequenting screenings in LA and around the world. Years later, Greg wrote the tell-all book The Disaster Artist with Tom Bissell, and found himself on the N.Y. Times Best Sellers list. His book was a funny, fascinating and poignant look at a crazy story and the friendship behind it, proving to be strong enough to be adapted into a film that raised Greg and Tommy’s profiles higher than ever. More recently Greg turned to writing a screenplay, resulting in Best F(r)iends, described as “a two-volume cinematic ‘saga’ that promises to interweave mystery, intrigue, and more than a few dark laughs”. Before screening he and Tommy’s latest film at the Light House Cinema this past weekend, Greg spoke with Film In Dublin about some of his Movie Memories, his experiences as a writer and of course, about Tommy Wiseau.

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For a number of years, Leitrim-based director Sean Clancy has built up his reputation, working on a number of music videos and short films, including the award-winning Cavalier. His first feature film, Locus of Control, tells the story of a struggling stand-up comedian Andrew Egan who is forced to take a teaching job helping the unemployed re-enter the workforce. As Andrew grows accustomed to the droll institution and its occupants he suspects that one of the students is out to get him and that the previous teacher may not have left of his own accord. His life slowly unravels and both Andrew’s lessons and stand-up gigs fall on deaf ears and he finds himself trapped in a larger cosmic joke. The film was shown last month as one of the Irish features at the Silk Road Film Festival, and this Thursday will be the opening feature of the second Dublin Sci-Fi Film Festival. Ahead of that screening of the film, written, directed and edited by Clancy, Film In Dublin caught up with the up and coming Irish director.

 

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The New Music is a film that looks at a little know medical condition, as well as the struggle to readjust your life when things don’t turn out the way you initially planned. The film tells the story of Adrian, a classical pianist with extraordinary talent, who discovers he has Young Onset Parkinson’s, a rare form of Parkinson’s Disease affecting sufferers under fifty. Despite this debilitating condition, Adrian joins a punk band as a keyboard player and rediscovers his life through music and love.

The shooting of the film has now concluded, with a crowd-funding campaign underway to ensure the film’s release and raise funds for Young Parkinson’s Ireland. Film In Dublin spoke with the film’s director Chiara Viale, as well as actor Cilléin McEvoy about the film and their efforts to see it released.

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This January, the first Dublin Smartphone Film Festival took place at the Generator Hostel in Smithfield, a weekend showcasing the possibilities of smartphone filmmaking. With experienced hands like Steven Soderbergh experimenting with the format, its prominence is only growing, but a new generation of directors are taking up their phones and the opportunities accessible tech is affording them to create films of their own. Two such emerging talents are Matthew Roche and Elliot Milofsky, independent Irish film-makers currently studying Philosophy in Dublin. As part of ‘Extra Extra’, the pair just finished their latest short film Lady Luck, a submission for the Moment Invitational Film Festival. Their last short film Far won “Best Irish Film” at the Dublin Smartphone Film Festival and even since then the pair have been directing more shorts, all completed only with a smartphone. Film In Dublin spoke with the pair about their efforts in filmmaking and in getting others to realise the potential of the phones in their pockets.

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In Direct Line, Film In Dublin cuts to the chase, asking 20 questions of Ireland’s directors to get a brief look into their outlooks, influences and inspirations.


Ross McDonnell is both a photographer and filmmaker, with credits in photography, cinematography and directing on several documentary films. Born in Dublin, Ireland in 1979. As a photographer, his work has been published in The New York Times, Art in America, The Observer, The Washington Post, The Irish Times, Fader magazine and more. A twp-time nominee for Irish Film and Television Awards, his films have screened at festivals around the world, including last year’s Elián, an official selection at the Tribeca Film Festival. A frequent collaborator with Alex Gibney, McDonnell worked on the director’s most recent film, No Stone Unturned – a documentary about a flare up of the violence of the Troubles in Co. Down in 1994, released last November.

 

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With a seemingly endless supply of big budget blockbusters, superhero flicks and glamorous award contenders on our screens, it can be hard to find the time for smaller, independent movies. Despite our endeavour to deliver you all things film, even we here at Film in Dublin have had some remarkable films fly under our radar throughout the past year. With this in mind, we have spent the holiday season looking back on this year’s greatest and most under-appreciated movies in an effort to prepare you for your annual office Oscar party. Now you can have bragging rights over the most obscure and brilliant films that your colleagues and friends may have missed in 2017!

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It has been a year. In 2017 there was a lot for film fans to contemplate, but in what they say on the screen and in the wider film business. Month after month, entertaining, challenging and interesting films found their way onto Irish screens, either from Hollywood or any number of our own talented Irish directors. It was a year where the sickeningly pervasive culture of abuse in cinema was thrust into the headlines by brave survivors no longer willing to suffer in silence. It was also a year in great filmmaking, where talented, diverse directors were given the opportunity to show their talent, several for the first time, where performances transported us just as believably to the far-off future, the underprivileged, overlooked present and even outside the fluid realm of time altogether. This is Film In Dublin’s list of the best films of 2017, the films that moved us, entertained us, opened our eyes and otherwise expressed everything that cinema is meant to be, in a year that showed that cinema doesn’t always achieve those lofty ideals behind the scenes.

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November 24 -26 will see the return of Dub Web Fest, Ireland’s celebration of online storytelling. Now in its third year, this film festival curated for online programming will have among its programme a MasterClass workshop in editing to be delivered by the experienced and renowned Irish editor Tony Kearns. From advertisements of the likes of Lynx, the Lotto and Playstation to acclaimed music videos including ‘Just’ by Radiohead and ‘Firestarter’ by The Prodigy, chances are high that you’ve seen his work, even if you haven’t realised it. More recently, Kearns has edited a number of feature films, including Cardboard Gangsters, the true crime drama set in the heart of Darndale. Film In Dublin spoke with Tony ahead of Dub Web Fest, to get his insights into the editing process.

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