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Irish film ‘Viva’ selected as Closing Gala at Audi Dublin International Film Festival
11 Jan 2016 : Seán Brosnan
Hector Medina playing Jesus in ‘Viva’
Following a hugely positive critical reception from Telluride Film Festival and shortlisting for Best Foreign Language Film Oscar, Irish director Paddy Breathnach’s drama ‘Viva’ has been announced to close the 2016 Audi Dublin International Film Festival on Sunday 28th February.

Written by Irish actor and screenwriter Mark O’Halloran (‘Adam & Paul’) and produced by Rob Walpole and Rebecca O’Flanagan for Treasure Entertainment (The Stag), ‘Viva’ stars Cuban actors Jorge Perugorría (Strawberries and Chocolate), Luis Alberto García and Héctor Medina.

“It is a thrill and a delight to finally be showing ‘Viva’ to a home audience,” said Mark O’Halloran. “To have it screen as the closing film at ADIFF makes that all the sweeter.”

‘Viva’ also earned a standing ovation when screened at a Special IFTA Members preview screening on January 9th.

The film tells the story of Jesus, a young gay man, who discovers that the only time he is free from life’s struggles is when he is on stage transformed into ‘Viva’, his beautiful alter ego that bears her soul on stage. His dream, however, is crushed with the arrival of his father Angel, whose standards of masculinity are derived from a world of boxing and incarceration. Their opposing expectations, further aggravated by their financial instability, create constant conflict both within themselves and each other as both men struggle to understand one another and become a family again.

Commenting on the announcement, Gaby Smyth, Chair of the Board of Audi Dublin International Film Festival said: “It is entirely fitting that this year’s festival finishes with Viva, an uplifting and beautiful film from two of Ireland’s finest film-makers: director Paddy Breathnach and writer Mark O’Halloran. In a year of very high calibre Irish film-making, we can be justly proud of closing the festival with this exceptional work.”

The 2016 Audi Dublin International Film Festival opens on 18th February with John Carney’s ‘Sing Street’, and will welcome guests including actress Angela Lansbury to Dublin throughout the 11 days. The full line-up for the Festival programme will be launched at the end of January to include themed strands, along with a host of special guests and special events. Season tickets are now available for the Festival, offering free entrance to all screenings, exclusive galas and after-show parties during the Festival, as well as a sneak preview of the 2016 programme with advance booking. Tickets to the Angela Lansbury celebration are available via Ticketmaster - http://www.ticketmaster.ie/venueartist/198867/5187851?camefrom=CFC_IE_CLI_BGET&brand=ie_gct.

The Dublin International Film Festival is sponsored by Audi, and funded by The Arts Council and The Irish Film Board.

Check out the trailer for ‘Viva’ below:

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