Colin Farrell and more announced for VMDIFF21

Announcements are still coming in for this year’s Dublin International Film Festival. New films, events and interviews are all on the way for the biggest festival in the fair city of film (and beyond for this year’s all-online edition), with one of Ireland’s biggest stars set to speak. The festival have announced that Colin Farrell, Amma Asante and Francis Lee will be among the guests at the 2021 festival this March.

Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival is delighted to announced a host of new additions to the 2021 programme, including a conversation with award winning actor and global star Colin Farrelland Festival Director Gráinne Humphreys. A frequent Festival guest, Farrell will discuss his memories of bringing new films to festivals both in Dublin and Internationally.

Speaking about his involvement, Farrell said:

“What this (VMDIFF online) does is open festivals up to a greater panoply of people and wider audience, and allows people to get a sense of the opportunities and films at a film festival and the passion that fuels film festivals. They are incredible experiences.”

Two exciting new Irish premieres will be screened at the Festival – Tina a remarkable documentary which charts how the iconic singer Tina Turner overcame pain and personal turmoil to find her own place in music and life, whilst in Just 1 Day, cinematographer Christopher Doyle brings visual beauty to established screenwriter Erica Li’s directorial debut. Set in Hong Kong, the film highlights the city’s rapidly changing heritage.

Alongside Harry McQueen and Ben Sharrock, the Festival is delighted that another UK talent Francis Lee, director of the acclaimed Gods Own Country will join this year to discuss his new film Ammonite.

The Festival has also lined up a number of impressive discussions as part of the Industry programme: a dive into the world of Casting, featuring leaders in their field, Margery Simkin (AvatarBeverly Hills CopErin Brockovich) and Louise Kiely (The Green KnightHerselfNormal People), hosted by Marian Quinn of Janey Pictures; whilst producer/publicist/festival strategist Kathleen McInnis will present an interactive workshop on Film Festival Strategies, speaking directly to emerging filmmakers about their journey to audience.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, the Festival has programmed three ground-breaking films by women directors as part of its Black Womens Film Retrospective. Daughters of the Dust, Welcome II the Terrordome and Belle, as well as the short film Mamans will screen on 8th March in recognition of the important contribution these filmmakers have made to the contemporary film canon. The following day will also see a student seminar on Black Women Filmmakers, focused on diversity and representation in film, with filmmaker Amma Asante (BelleWhere Hands Touch) taking part in an in-conversation interview.

As a tribute to former Festival Board member Sue Bruce-Smith, who passed away in 2020, the Best Short award has been named in her honour.

“I thought about our much loved board member Sue Bruce Smith many times over the past few months and in putting together this year’s line-up, many, many times thought of asking her opinion about a particular film or a guest “ said Gráinne Humphreys, Festival Director.

“Sue was a board member from 2004 to 2015 and she gave so generously of her time, both at festival time and year round. In recognition of her contribution to the festival and to the broader film community from 2021 onwards we have named our Best Short Film Award after this wonderful friend and colleague. Sue always loved discovering new filmmakers and always argued for championing emerging talents within the Irish film community and beyond, we hope this award will reflect her energy and passion.”

The Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival and NCAD have collaborated over the last few years on an exhibition of bespoke posters for films screening in the Festival, Alternate Take: NCAD Poster Exhibition. The highly imaginative, original approach to the film posters showcases the breadth and variety of the Festival, and also the Irish and international nature of the programme. This year the exhibition will be going online from 3-14 March and can be viewed at

The 2021 Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival box office is now open at

About Luke Dunne

Luke is a writer, film addict and Dublin native who loves how much there is for film fans in his home county. A former writer for FilmFixx and the Freakin' Awesome Network, he founded Film In Dublin to pursue his dual dreams of writing about film and never sleeping ever again.

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