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James Hickey is New CEO of IFB
10 Feb 2011 :
The Irish Film Board has announced the appointment of James Hickey to the role of Chief Executive of CEO for the group. James Hickey is a Partner of and Head of the Media and Entertainment law group of Ireland’s largest law firm Matheson Ormsby Prentice. He replaces Simon Perry whose contract came to an end in January 2011.

James Hickey is the Partner in charge of the Media and Entertainment Law Group of Ireland’s largest law firm Matheson Ormsby Prentice. He graduated with an M.A.(Dub)LLB and qualified as a solicitor in 1977. Prior to taking up practice full time as a solicitor he worked in the Project Arts Centre as Theatre Director and also worked as Box Office Manager for the Dublin Theatre Festival in 1979. While practising as a solicitor during the 1980s he developed practice areas particularly in representing music recording artists dealing with record companies and music publishers, representing film producers and dealing with the then recently established Irish Film Board. He was also the Chairman of the Project Arts Centre and became the Chairman of the Abbey Theatre in the early 1990’s.

He joined Matheson Ormsby Prentice in 1992 and by then was a full time media and entertainment lawyer dealing with a wide range of clients in film and television production and music. During the next decade he was also a member of the Board of Directors of Screen Producers Ireland and was closely involved in the developments relating to the film and television production sector during that period including serving on the Taoiseach’s Committee 1992 which recommended the re-establishment of the IFB and the Kilkenny Committee 1998/1999 which brought forward recommendations for the advance of film and television production in Ireland. He became Chairman of Matheson Ormsby Prentice partnership in 2004 and served two two year terms in that position while continuing to practice in media and entertainment law during that period.

During his career as a lawyer James worked on several successful Irish projects including ‘Once’; ‘Kisses’; ‘Breakfast on Pluto’; ‘King Arthur’; ‘In the Name of the Father’ and ‘Intermission’. In the area of television production, he has worked in a legal capacity with the producers of Irish co-productions such as ‘The Tudors’ and ‘Camelot’ and Irish drama television series such as ‘The Clinic’, ‘Single Handed’ and ‘Raw’ and the Irish versions of the formats of ‘The Apprentice’ and ‘Dragon’s Den’.

Welcoming the announcement, IFB Chairman James Morris said:”On behalf of the Board I am delighted that someone of the calibre and experience of James Hickey has agreed to serve as the Chief Executive of Bord Scannán na hÉireann/The Irish Film Board for the next five year period. James will be joining and leading a team of staff at the agency of the highest dedication and professionalism. His challenge will be to continue to build on the achievements of a growing group of Irish directors, writers, actors and producers while at the same time ensuring, with the support of the industry and Government, that the growth and employment potential of the whole audio visual sector is achieved.”

The chairman also spoke of the evolving role of the IFB, finishing with :””We are working in a very different environment to the one we faced five years ago and we see this appointment as an important step in the ongoing review of the Board’s functions in order to ensure that the organisation meets the needs of Irish film makers and the industry as a whole for the next 5 years.”

James Hickey commented on his new role, stating: “I am deeply honoured to have been given the opportunity to take up the post of Chief Executive of Bord Scannán na hÉireann/The Irish Film Board. All my working life I have been involved in various roles in the world of the arts and film and television production and I look forward very much to working with all the staff of the Board in my new role. I would like to thank my partners in Matheson Ormsby Prentice for their friendship and support over the years. I hope, in taking up this position, that I will be able to make a contribution to the promotion of the culture of film making and the development of the industry of film production in Ireland in my new position.”

James Hickey will formally assume the full time position on the 1st of June 2011. He will be working in a consultative basis with the Board prior to taking up the full time position. The new IFB CEO lives in Dublin and is married to Fiona MacAnna. He has two grown up children Lara and Jack.

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