Over 170 guests attended the event, which was hosted by the Ambassador of Ireland Bobby McDonagh.
Basking in the London evening sunshine that poured into the Irish Embassy’s spectacular ballroom, leading representatives from the Irish and UK film, television and cultural sectors gathered at the IFTA networking event, which was designed to help strengthen bonds and build new collaborative relationships between the two nations’ growing creative industries.
IFTA Chief Executive Áine Moriarty took the opportunity to describe the outline of events planned for the inaugural John Ford Ireland Film Symposium, which will honour, examine and learn from the work and legacy of the legendary Irish-American filmmaker John Ford. Taking place in Dublin from 7 - 10 June 2012, the unique four day Symposium will include a range of public screenings, informative lectures, industry masterclasses, public interviews and more.
Speaking at the event Irish Ambassador Bobby McDonagh said: “The visual arts, and particularly film and television, reach a world-wide audience. Images of Ireland on screen - as well as our talented writers, directors and actors - have had a particular impact on how Ireland is viewed around the world.
“The Embassy is very pleased to be able to support IFTA in the valuable work that it does. It’s particularly fitting that IFTA is initiating a film symposium to celebrate John Ford, a man who had such an innate understanding of the power and magic of film."
Included among the guests at the IFTA LONDON Spring Reception were Stella Days director Thaddeus O’Sullivan and producers Jackie Larkin & Leslie McKimm; Irish producers Alan Moloney (Byzantium), Katie Holly (Citadel) and Jo Gilbert (Closing the Ring); screenwriter and author Patrick McCabe (The Butcher Boy); IFTA Best Actress winner Ruth Negga (Shirley, Love/Hate), Albert Nobbs star Bronagh Gallagher; Owen McDonnell (Single Handed), Titanic Blood & Steel cast Billy Carter, Conor MacNeil and Denise Gough; IFTA winning Irish actress Elaine Cassidy (Harpers Island; and Being Human star Sinead Keenan and director Graham Cantwell.
Other guests who attended were President of Discovery Networks Dee Forbes; CEO of International Airlines Group Willie Walsh; BAFTA Chief Executive Amanda Berry; RADA’s Head of Film / TV Edward Hicks, Nik Powell, director of the National Film & Television School; Rob Kirk (Sky); casting directors Ros Hubbard and John Hubbard; Ruth Caleb (BBC); in addition to representatives from other leading Irish/UK industry including Lisa Richards UK, Curtis Brown Agency, Element Pictures UK, The Works Film Group, Touchpaper Television, Rise Films, Film 4, Number 9 Films, Wall To Wall, High Point Films, Swipe Films, Enterprise Ireland, Tourism Ireland, Irish Cultural Trust, British Irish Association, The Irish Times, The Irish Post, The Irish World, and many more.
For information about becoming a Member of IFTA LONDON visit the IFTA website www.ifta.ie/london and for further information about JOHN FORD Ireland visit www.johnfordireland.org
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