This month the Irish Film Board have been celebrating a staggering twenty years in business, (seriously, how fast does time fly?). If you've missed out on their celebratory events thus far, fear not; they will culminate in a number of special screenings and events this weekend at the IFI, all with an Irish focus.
Here's the schedule of events, courtesy of the Irish Film Board.
FRIDAY 26TH APRIL, 18.30
Gala Screening of JUMP
JUMP goes on release in Irish cinemas on Friday 26th April.
Set in Derry on New Year's Eve, and drawing focus on a cast of predominantly young actors, this Romeo & Juliet-type tale is a smart, sprightly, and adeptly constructed crime-thriller.
JUMP quickly establishes the relationship at its core between Greta (Nichola Burley) and Pearse (Martin McCann), who meet by chance on a bridge while the rest of the city is wrapped up in revelry. The instant attraction between them is thwarted by an unwelcome connection in the form of Greta's father, one of the city's most brutal criminals. While the couple attempt to overcome and escape this, Greta's friends run into dire straits of their own, altering and uniting all four lives irrevocably.
Director Kieron J. Walsh and cast member Charlene McKenna will take part in a Q&A after the screening which will be followed by a wine reception.
SATURDAY 27TH AND SUNDAY 28TH APRIL, 11.30 - 13.30
Irish Short Films
All three IFI screens will present Irish shorts produced over the last 20 years.
The selection includes a mix of rarely-seen works and popular award winning live action, documentary and animated shorts. Highlights include the recent Sundance winner Irish Folk Furniture, Academy Award winner Six Shooter and Oscar nominees Pentecost, The Door, New Boy, Granny O'Grimm's Sleeping Beauty, Give Up Yer Aul Sins and Fifty Percent Grey along with the documentaries Undressing My Mother and Useless Dog.
Patrons can drop in and out of any of the screens to get a flavour of the variety of Irish shorts produced over the last 20 years.
(Free but ticketed.)
SATURDAY 27TH APRIL, 18.30
Gala Screening, MILO
An Irish-Dutch co-production, MILO is the debut feature by brothers Berend and Roel Boorsma. The cinematography of the starkly beautiful Wicklow and Dublin landscape frames the story of ten-year-old Milo (Lorcan Bonner) whose life is strictly controlled by his overbearing father (Stuart Graham). Milo's attempt to break out brings him on an unexpected adventure of self-discovery. An attempted kidnapping, an unusual friendship with aging bandits, and his mother's desperate search leads the family to confront the secret shame fostered by an obsession with public image.
The film has garnered much praise on the film festival circuit where it won the Premio CGS Award for originality, and creativity in storytelling at the Italian Giffoni Film Festival.
Cast members will attend this screening which will be followed by a wine reception.
SUNDAY 28th APRIL, 18.30
Irish Premiere, BYZANTIUM
Neil Jordan's BYZANTIUM is a gothic thriller adapted from Moira Buffini's play A Vampire Story, starring Saoirse Ronan, Gemma Arterton and Jonny Lee Miller. Arterton and Ronan play mother and daughter living in a crumbling seaside resort with a carefully guarded but deadly secret. Clara (Arterton) is a vampire prostitute who works in the local amusement arcade scouting for unsuspecting clientele, something which makes her daughter Eleanor (an ethereal Ronan) deeply apprehensive. As knowledge of their secret spreads, their past catches up on them with deathly consequences.
Director Neil Jordan will take part in a Q&A after the screening which will be followed by a wine reception.