13 August 2020 The Irish Film & Television Network
Festival Round-Up: Wins for Irish screenwriter in LA, 'Nothing Personal' in Marrakech & Shorts at NY Fest
15 Dec 2009 :
Lotte Verbeek wins Best Actress prize at Marrakech fest for ‘Nothing Personal’, victory for Irish projects, ‘Sugar Stick’ and ‘Bleeding Love’ NY International Independent Film Festival and Shane McCabe Wins Top Prize at L.A. Screenwriting Comp.

‘Nothing Personal’ Actress Lotte Verbeek wins Marrakech Best Actress Award

The jury of the 9th Marrakech International Film Festival (FIFM) has awarded Lotte Verbeek (Links) the Best Actress prize for her role in the Irish/Dutch co-production, ‘Nothing Personal’.

The jury was chaired by Iranian director, screenwriter and producer Abbas Kiarostami (writer, Taste of Cherry), with French actress Fanny Ardant (Elizabeth), Palestinian director Elia Suleiman (Yadon Ilaheyya), Italian actress Isabella Ferrari (Quiet Chaos), French director Christophe Honore (Love Songs), Spanish actress Marisa Paredes (Life is Beautiful), British director Mike Figgis (Leaving Las Vegas), Indian actress Nandita Das (Earth), Argentinean director Pablo Trapero (Born and Bred), and Moroccan dancer, choreographer and director Lahcen Zinoun (choreographer, The Last Temptartion of Christ).

'Nothing Personal' was co-produced by Fastnet Films' Macdara Kelleher (Kisses) and Morgan Bushe (If I Should Fall Behind), and filmed on location in Connemara. It follows a growing intimacy between a young runaway played by Dutch actress Lotte Verbeek and Stephen Rea's reclusive wax-jacket clad loner in the Galway drizzle. The low-budget feature has already won the Best First Film and Best Actress awards at this year's Locarno Film Festival and five prizes including Best Film at the 2009 Dutch Film Festival.

"Fastnet Films are delighted for Lotte receiving this award and also for her recent selection as the Dutch Shooting Star representative at the upcoming Berlinale Film Festival," says co-producer Morgan Bushe. "The continued success of the film on the festival circuit has helped Bavaria International to sell the film to a large number of territories both in Europe and further afield. It was released nationally in Holland last week and it's our aim to have it out in Irish cinemas during 2010.”

’Sugar Stick’ and Bleeding Love’ at NY Fest

Inca Film's short film, 'Sugar Stick' has won the title of Best International Black Comedy Short and Ged Murray’s ‘Bleeding Love’ wins Best Short Rom-Com at the New York International Independent Film Festival.

‘Sugar Stick’ tells the story of Mary (Irene Wright), a lonely woman trapped in a thirty year, toxic friendship with the vitriolic, chain-smoking Miriam, (Kathleen Tierney) debuted earlier this year at the L.A. Shorts Fest. It was recently one of ten Irish shorts to screen at the Foyle Film Festival and has been picked up for distribution by Network Ireland.

The six minute film, which is currently part of the Anarchy online competition at the Slamdance Film Festival, was shot in Kilmore Quay, Wexford in February. It is written, directed and co-produced by Laura Way (actress, The Clinic) with Michael Way as co-producer. The project’s cinematographer is Paddy Jordan (Free Chips Forever!) and the short’s music is provided by Rori Coleman and Joe Dolan.

‘Bleeding Love’, written and directed by Ged Murray and produced by Ian Hunt Duffy, is a comedy about an awkward charity worker's attempts to see a blood bank nurse by donating blood each day. It stars Edwin Mullane, Nicole Elizabeth and Jim Roche and took the award for 'Best Short Rom-Com' in the international competition.

The short had a previous New York win with the Iron Mule comedy festival where it took the judge's award as well as previously winning the 'Francie' for 'Best Short Fiction Film' at this year's Clones Film Festival. Both the Director and producer are recent graduates of the National Film School at IADT, Dun Laoghaire where 'Bleeding Love' was made as a final year project.

The New York International Independent Film and Video Festival (NYIIFVF) is one of the largest independent film festivals in the world and looks to celebrate underground, low budget and non-mainstream artists. Past NYIIFVF festivals have included the work of Abel Ferrara, Andy Garcia, Calista Flockhart, Selma Blair, Ewan McGregor, Dominique Swain, Busy Phillips, Cameron Diaz, Christopher Walken, Daryl Hannah, Eva Herzigova, Guy Pearce, George Clooney, Jennifer Aniston, Matthew Modine, Rod Steiger, Tippi Hedren, Tony Danza, Willem Dafoe and Vin Diesel.

Director Laura Way reacted to her win, telling IFTN, “Receiving this award from the NYIIFVF has topped what has been an exciting and eventful year for 'Sugar Stick'. It's very encouraging that a micro budget, independent short film can get this kind of recognition at an international level. I'm looking forward to witnessing it's festival journey over the next year and I'm so grateful to NYIIFVF and everyone who gave their time and talent to this project.”

For a full list of NYIIFVF winners visit www.nyfilmvideo.com.

Irish writer/director Shane McCabe Wins Top Prize at L.A. Screenwriting Competition

Irish writer/director Shane McCabe has scooped this year’s top prize at the Fernlief Productions Back in the Box screenwriting competition in Los Angeles. Shane’s screenplay, ‘The Base’ was placed first from the hundreds of entries received from around the world, and has thus secured a production deal with Fernlief Productions. Doug Neff (Beginning of the End) at Fernlief Productions will produce, with Shane also attached to produce.

Shane describes ‘The Base’ as a redemptive tale which follows the life of a young NSA Profiler forced to relive her own harrowing abduction in an effort to bring closure to a case which has haunted an entire investigative unit.

Of the script, Ferleif Productions’ Producer and Director, Douglas Neff said "It is a rare script that can, not only tell a great story, but bring forth a very important message. Shane McCabe has written such a script with 'The Base'. In order to stop a killer, a woman must face the demons within herself and relive her most horrific experience. In this terrifying journey she is forced to answer the question, 'How much would you put yourself at risk in order to save another person?' Riveting, breathtaking and heart wrenching, this story will have you glued to your seat and clinging to your loved ones. Shane McCabe has brought to life a person's worst fear and a parents’ worst nightmare."

Shane puts his joy at winning the award into words for IFTN, saying "Unbelievable! To be chosen from a worldwide field and to not alone win but secure a production deal means everything to me. ‘The Base’ is a story which needs to be told. I'm thrilled to be part of the project."

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