6 December 2022 The Irish Film & Television Network
Festival Round-Up
19 Jun 2015 : Seán Brosnan
‘Personal Development’ continues its’ impressive festival run
Marmalade Films ‘Waterlilies’ receives US premiere at AFI Docs Documentary Film Festival, Tom Sullivan’s short film ‘Personal Development’ chosen to screen in Best of Fest category at Seattle and ‘Life is Sacred’ makes its’ Australian premiere at the Sydney Film Festival.

‘Waterlilies’ receives US premiere at AFI Docs

Marmalade Films has announced that Tanya Doyle’s latest documentary ‘Waterlilies’ will have its’ US premiere at the AFI DOCS, Documentary Film Festival 2015, taking place from the 17th-21st of June in Washington D.C.

The renowned festival serves as a launch pad for independent documentaries, and affords international filmmakers access to US audiences.

A celebration of strong women in an ordinary situation, ‘Waterlilies’ is a meditation on identity and wisdom, exploring the changing role in a woman’s life with seven women in their sixties & seventies as they learn how to swim. Taking themselves out of their comfort zone, they reveal what it is that drives them to keep striving for more, for understanding and for belonging. In this documentary by IFTA nominated Tanya Doyle, the juxtaposition of straight talking poolside anecdotes with visually arresting underwater imagery transforms mere casual observations on growing old into a profound exploration of wisdom and what it means to grow and to change. The experiences and observations of each woman are fused together to reveal the commonality of what it is to be an ordinary woman moving through the phases of life.

On the selection of Waterlilies, AFI Docs Programming Manager Sarah Bilodeau said: “It’s never too late to learn to swim. In this adorable short Irish lasses in their 60s learn to swim while discussing their marriages, children, interests and what lies in store for them. Swimming creates a strong bond and provides more freedom for these lovely ladies.”

Already the winner of the Audience Choice Award at this year’s Dingle International Film Festival ‘Waterlilies’ saw director Tanya Doyle adopt her characteristic patient and long-term approach to documentary making with the film being produced over a number of years. Shot in Dublin, ‘Waterlilies’ was written & directed by Tanya Doyle (‘The House’, ‘Bia Dúchais’), produced by Daniel Hegarty (Marmalade Films), with original score from Sam Joseph Delves, cinematography by Colm Hogan and editing by Cara Holmes. ‘Waterlilies’ was the recipient of an artist grant from Dublin City Council.

Tom Sullivan’s ‘Personal Development’ chosen as Best of Fest at Seattle

Continuing a very successful international festival run, Tom Sullivan’s 13 minute film ‘Personal Development’ was chosen to screen in the Best in Fest section of the Seattle International Film Festival.

Recognized as one of the top film festivals in North America, the Seattle International Film Festival is the largest, most highly-attended film festival in the United States, with over 155,000 attendees annually and was named one of the 50 unmissable film festivals by Variety.

Produced by Hot Drop Film Ltd, ‘Personal Development’ is an IFB Signatures short film and tells the story of Fintan's already fragile relationship with his youngest daughter which is put to the test with the arrival of some unexpected news.

The short is directed by Tom Sullivan, written by Muirinn Lane Kelly and produced by Alan Keane.

‘Personal Development’ screened at this year’s Tribeca to great acclaim and has also screened at Indie Lisboa and the Brussels international Film Festival. It is also one of six Irish shorts to screen at this year’s Palm Springs International Shortfest which is currently underway in California. At home, the film has been chosen to screen at Galway, Cork Indie and Fastnet.

The film’s producers are currently in negotiation with two separate distributors over distribution rights for TV and VOD once it’s festival run is over.

‘Life is Sacred’ has Australian premiere at Sydney

Irish/Danish co-production ‘Life is Sacred’ had its’ Australian premiere at the Sydney Film Festival this month.

One of the world's longest-running film festivals, the 12-day Festival screens feature films, documentaries, short films and animation from around the world. The flagship program of Sydney Film Festival is the Official Competition, which was established in 2008 and celebrates 'courageous, audacious and cutting-edge' cinema.

A co-production between Final Cut for Real (‘The Act of Killing’; ‘The Look of Silence’) and John Keville of Savage Productions, ‘Life is Sacred’ was funded by the Danish Film Institute and the Irish Film Board.

‘Life is Sacred’ is a story about a fearless politician and his devoted followers. With an army of young people hoping for change, he uses mimes, pencils, flash mobs and superhero costumes to attack the corruption and violence in Colombia. A young woman falls in love with the movement, but to change a society penetrated by illegality, turns out to be much more difficult than she ever anticipated.

Director Andreas Dalsgaard first portrayed Mockus in the film 'Bogotá Change' (2009), which premiered at IDFA, and has been shown in more than 20 countries. ‘Life is Sacred’ features many of the same people, following up on Mockus' socially innovative campaign.

Before that, ‘Afghan Muscles’ (2007) was Andreas’ first documentary. It became a festival hit and won the American Film Institute Grand Prix. "Traveling with Mr. T" is an experimental hybrid feature doc, which premiered at Copenhagen Dox in 2012. Feature documentary "The Human Scale" premiered in early 2013 to critical applause and a worldwide cinema release and festival tour.

‘Life is Sacred’ first premiered at CPH:DOX last November and gained a F:ACT Award nomination. It took part in 2morrow Moscow Independent Film Festival (Russia); !F Istanbul Film Festival (Turkey); ZagrebDox (Croatia); London Human Rights Film Festival (UK); DOCS Barcelona (Spain).

It also screened at the Human Rights Watch Film Festival at the IFC Centre in New York, on June 18th 2015.

Cinephil has picked up Life Is Sacred for worldwide distribution.

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