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Foyle Film Festival Wraps As ‘Hatch’ & ‘Oh Willy’ Aim For Oscar Glory
26 Nov 2012 : By Eva Hall
'Oh Willy' won Best Animation at the Foyle Film Festival last night
The Foyle Film Festival came to a close last night with its Light in Motion awards ceremony, granting two short films a step closer to Oscar nomination.

Austrian director Christoph Kushnig’s ‘Hatch’ was awarded the Best Short Film Award at the ceremony in Derry last night. The film follows Milo and Biljana, two illegal immigrants who realise they cannot raise their newborn baby and achieve their own dreams at the same time. When they meet Thomas and Andreas, who desperately want a baby of their own, they see an opportunity arise.

‘Hatch’, 19 minutes in length, screened at the festival yesterday.

‘Oh Willy’, directed by Mark James Roels and Emma De Swaef, picked up Best Animation at the festival last night.

The animation follows Willy as he goes to care for his sick mother who happens to live in a nudist colony. Forced to return to his naturist roots, Willy bungles his way into noble savagery.

The film is 17 minutes in length, and screened at the festival on Saturday.

Both ‘Hatch’ and ‘Oh Willy’ will now be automatically considered for Oscar nomination as the Foyle Film Festival is Oscar affiliated. ‘Oh Willy’ joins Irish-produced animation ‘Head Over Heels’ which already made it onto the long list. The Oscar nominations will be announced on January 10.

Margo Harkin’s documentary ‘The Far Side of Revenge’ also took home a Light in Motion Award for Best Documentary last night. Harkin, a founding member of the Foyle Film Festival, captured the lives of a group of Northern Irish women who managed to put their political beliefs aside and not only form relationships with each other, but create a public and cultural event together. The women created a theatre performance titled ‘I Once Knew a Girl’ which was performed in Derry’s Playhouse Theatre in December 2010 before going on tour.

A surprise award was also given on the night to current festival director, Bernie McLaughlin, who received a ‘LegenDerry’ award for guiding the festival to its 25th year.

The festival wrapped last night after five days and nights of screenings and workshops. Ray Winstone and Mat Whitecross attended the opening night last Wednesday for the Irish premiere of their film ‘Ashes’, and Danish film ‘The Hunt’, which stars Mads Middelsen and Thomas Bo Larsen, closed the festival on Sunday night.

Also in attendance over the five-day event were Belfast actor Martin McCann, producer Katie Holly and director Kieron J Walsh, who all attended the screening of their film ‘Jump’, and the cast of ‘The Far Side of Revenge’, who participated in a Q&A with director Margo Harkin.

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