4 December 2022 The Irish Film & Television Network
Film Institute Initiatives
28 Jun 2001 :
New Initiatives from the Film Institute of Ireland with Spyglass Entertainment

The Film Institute of Ireland (FII) announced two new exciting initiatives on Tuesday 26th June at a reception at the Irish Film Centre.

Morgan OıSullivan, World 2000 Entertainment, and Ned Dowd, Spyglass Entertainment have organised the donation of $250,000 to the Development of a new Irish Film Archive with Spyglass Entertainment also being the official sponsors of the new Tiernan MacBride International Screenwriting Award. This annual prize of 10,000 euros comes supported with considerable industry follow up making the new award one of the most attractive of its kind worldwide.

Minister for Arts, Heritage, the Gaeltacht and the Islands, Ms. Sile deValera officially launched the new initiatives.

Morgan O'Sullivan said "We have had a wonderful relationship with Spyglass Entertainment. We look forward to producing other projects located in Ireland in the very near future".

Ned Dowd is Executive Producer on Reign of Fire and Vice President of Production with Spyglass Entertainment who are currently filming 'Reign of Fire', at Ardmore Studios, featuring Matthew MacConaughey and Christian Bale. Previously they have worked in Ireland on 'The Count of Monte Cristo' with Guy Pearce and Jim Caviezel. Spyglass also produced the world wide critically acclaimed success 'The Sixth Sense' starring Bruce Willis and Haley Joel Osment.

Mark Mulqueen, Director of the FII, warmly welcomed the generous sponsorship saying 'The archive development project has received a major boost. The aim now is to secure similar support from the relevant national bodies for this unique national collection'.

Martha OıNeill, Chairperson of the FII, commented ³The Film Institute is delighted to honour Tiernan Mac Bride with this award. The FII recognizes this critical point in the genesis of film making. We hope that this bursary will be a confident start for the selected screenwriter, allowing vital space to develop the integrity of his/her idea, the first step in the film making process. And we hope too that the finished film will be housed in the planned new archive facility, completing the life-cycle from the story on the page to the screen².


The Irish Film Archive has preserved and made permanently accessible Irelandıs moving image heritage since 1992. It houses work dating from the Lumiere Brothers films made in 1897 right up to present day releases, such as When Brendan met Trudy (2001). The new financial investment is a welcome catalyst to deliver an extended purpose built preservation facility for the Irish Film Archive by 2004. The Archive, a full member of FIAF (International Federation of Film Archives), is recognised as having excellent storage facilities. It is limited only in terms of actual physical space, a factor which the Institute has been aware of for some time.

The proposed new facility will allow the Archive to undertake a Film Search and a more proactive policy of acquisition as there will be ample space to house newly acquired material. It will be able to cope with the introduction of statutory deposit and begin the process of repatriating titles of Irish interest currently held abroad. Larger paper vaults will allow the serious augmentation of the current collection of scripts, programmes, correspondence, posters, stills and press material. Freeing up of space in the Eustace Street location by moving the master vaults off site will allow the Archive to develop its access and cataloguing facilities which will remain in the city centre site.

The existing Archive currently houses 15,000 cans. The successful storage of film requires conditions of 30-35 degrees Celsius relative humidity and 16 degrees Celsius temperature. These conditions are achieved in the 3 vaults in Eustace Street and it is the aim to replicate these excellent conditions in the new facility.

It is anticipated that given the major surge in the Irish Film Industry output that within the next 20 years the new facility will be home to between 80,000 and 100,000 cans.


Judging Panel:
Pat Murphy ­ Writer / Director (Anne Devlin, Nora)(Chair) Ned Dowd ­ Executive Producer, Spyglass Entertainment (Reign of Fire, Wonder Boys, Shanghai Noon, Last of the Mohicans ) Charlotte Kelly ­ Agent, Casarotte Ramsey and Associates­ (Damien O'Donnell) Richard Lester ­ Director (A Hard Dayıs Night, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Petulia) Mark Mulqueen ­ Director, Film Institute of Ireland

Two additional industry figures are to be confirmed in the forthcoming weeks.

Over the next five years, the award will acknowledge and support the creation of original and innovative scripts, through a combination of development funding and extensive promotion within the film industry.

1. 10,000 euros
2. Guaranteed Reading by Industry professionals
3. Meetings with Script Consultant
4. Name announced in international trades and press publications

The shortlist of five will be announced on November 30th and the winner will be announced at the FII Irish Film Ball in December 2001.

The competition is open to writers who are either Irish born writers, Irish citizens or Irish residents. Unproduced or optioned feature length scripts (90-130 pages max) only. There are no limits as to genre/setting/period etc. A maximum of 2 scripts per writer will be accepted.

Closing Date: Friday September 28th 2000
Entry Fee: IR£25 per script

Tiernan Mac Bride 1932 ­- 1995

Tiernan MacBride was a founding father of the Irish film industry. He began his career as a producer of television commercials and short films. He had been chairman of the film branch of the former ITGWU, and chairman of the Association of Independent Producers. He was a member of the first Irish Film Board, and was a serving member on the council of the Film Institute of Ireland before he died. His diligence and passion contributed enormously to the establishment of the Irish Film Centre.

MacBride was a robust supporter of the film industry and never failed to use his enthusiasm and good will to help kickstart new initiatives, such as the film school at the Galway Film Fleadh, and was always on hand to provide advice and inspiration to aspiring filmmakers.

Ms Lelia Doolan, past chairperson of the Irish film Board, said of Tiernan that he was ³one of the great supporters of home-grown talent, with the heart of a lion², and the FII commented that Tiernanıs enthusiasm and spirit had done so much to revitalize film at every level in Ireland.

Michael Dwyer, senior film correspondent of the Irish Times, said, ³It is arguable that no other individual campaigned quite so vigorously and so ceaselessly for the Irish film industry as Tiernan did, undaunted by that industryıs frequently one-step-forward, two-steps-backward history.²

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