16 June 2024 The Irish Film & Television Network
Nominees Announced for the 2018 IFTA Gala Television Awards
09 May 2018 : Nathan Griffin
The Irish Film & Television Academy have announce the Nominees for the 2018 IFTA Gala Television Awards, which is sponsored by Gala Retail, and takes place at the RDS in Dublin on Thursday 31st May 2018.

The Nominees are announced in 23 strongly contested Television categories; from entertainment, comedy, Soap and Performance to factual, current affairs and news across all of the Irish broadcasters RTÉ One, RTÉ Two, TV3, be3, TG4 and BBC Northern Ireland. The Nominations have been shortlisted by Members of the Irish Academy along with Irish and international Jury panels of industry experts.

Academy CEO, Aine Moriarty said: 

“Congratulations to all the programme makers for delivering such incredible work, the standard keeps getting higher each year. The Academy is proud to give due recognition to Irish achievements in television and to the great Irish creative talent involved.”

In Entertainment, TV3’s flagship Saturday evening entertainment show Ireland’s Got Talent is shortlisted alongside RTE’s flagship Sunday evening’s Dancing with the Stars; also nominated is former winner Brendan O’Connor’s Cutting Edge and the chat show with a difference The Tommy Tiernan Show.

Investment in comedy in recent years by the broadcasters has definitely paid off when it comes to top quality comedy entertainment coming through. This year’s hotly contested Comedy category has a very funny bunch of Irish talents in the mix who have delivered the best of comedy this year and made the nation ‘laugh out loud’ on their sofas and they include the renowned Mrs Brown’s Boys and Bridget and Eamon who are nominated alongside the brilliant new series Derry Girls and The Young Offenders both with a brilliant young cast.

Reality programmes have strong contenders keeping it real this year with Coco’s First Dates Ireland and Kite’s Gogglebox Ireland who between them got the nation dating and watching the telly; Waddell’s Francis Brennan’s Grand Vietnamese Tour also gets the nod alongside Indiepic’s Painting the Nation, presented by Pauline McLynn, exploring Ireland’s amateur artistic talents.

In the Soap & Continuing Drama Award category RTE’s Fair City is nominated alongside TG4’s Ros na Run, with both soaps celebrating over 20 years of broadcast. TV3’s primetime soap Red Rock, completes the trio of Irish Soaps all vying for the accolade of Ireland’s best homemade TV Soap opera.

The stand-out Female Performance in a Soap or Comedy showcases a range of superb performances from female actors this year. Cathy Belton (Red Rock) delivers a stellar turn as the matriarch in TV3’s soap Red Rock alongside comedy mums Sharon Horgan and Hilary Rose who receive nominations for their comedic turn in Channel 4’s Catastrophe and The Young Offenders. Also nominated are Seana Kerslakefor Can’t Cope Won’t Cope and Saoirse-Monica Jackson for her performance in hit show Derry Girls.

Male Performance in a Soap or Comedy sees the hilariously funny Brendan O Carroll as everyone’s favourite mammy in Mrs. Brown’s Boys; Comedian Tommy Tiernan impresses as the step-dad in Derry Girls, alongside the lovable Young Offender Chris Walley and Sean McGinley as the music rock legend in TG4’s comedy Fir Bolg. This category also sees Chris Newman nominated for his performance as Detective Rory Walsh in TV3’s soap Red Rock.

Among the very competitive categories is Documentary Series sees actor and activist John Connors’ and his team on their ground breaking research in John Connors: The Travellers nominated alongside observational documentaries Keeping Ireland Alive The Health Service in a Day and The Zoo both of which had unprecedented access to their respective subjects. Also nominated in Documentary Series is the visual feast that is Éire Fhiáin An Cósta Thiar which explores Ireland’s spectacular coastline.

In the Best Single Documentary category, which is presented in association with BAI, the outstanding nominees are Autism and Me, a revealing documentary exploring the autism spectrum through the experiences of a number of Irish children, teenagers and young adults; also nominated this year is The Great Irish Sell-Off in which Ian Kehoe explores how a small number of financial giants have bought close to 200 billion euros of distressed Irish debt in recent years; Pearl Harbour – The Heroes Who Fought Backgives an fresh insight into the disaster and tells the true stories of the men that went above and beyond the call of duty. Brendan Courtney’s poignant We Need to Talk About Dad, which explores the toughest decision his family has had to make and how that decision can tear a family apart. Also nominated is the superb Shaw: My Astonishing Self, presented by Gabriel Byrne, exploring the life and times of Ireland’s brilliant satirist George Bernard Shaw.

Ireland’s love of sports is well reflected in this year’s Sport nominees which include Crash and Burn, documenting the life to Irish F1 driver Tommy Byrne; Giles, exploring the career of Irish soccer star and pundit Johnny Giles, Pull Like a Dog about the Olympic silver medalist rowing duo who won the hearts of the Irish public during their tv interviews, and Anthony Foley: Musterman, Head Coach of Munster Rugby team, who was beloved by his team and supporters.

In the Factual category, broadcaster John Creedon continues his exploration of Ireland in Creedon’s Shannon; another explorer – Hector goes on a road trip through central America in Hector CentralRoom to Improve, the hugely popular Sunday night show with architect Dermot Bannon, and Schizophrenia: The Voices in My Head talks to six young people who speak openly about living with schizophrenia.

The nominees in the Specialist Factual category, are Aerial Ireland created for the Smithsonian and selected to broadcast on the relaunch of be3; Fairytale of New York, an exploration of the background to the recording of the hugely popular Pogue’s Christmas tune; Portrait of a Gallery – a four year series in the making, following the refurbishment of Ireland’s national gallery, and Wild Ireland The Edge of the World, the breath-taking wildlike show exploring the wonders of Ireland’s Atlantic coast.

Irish Language programming is well represented especially across Irish comedy Fir BolgFrank O’Connor: Idir Dha Shruth, exploring Frank O’Connor’s work as gaeilge, Rocky Ros Muc the documentary about boxer Sean Mannion and TG4’s flagship show, Ros na Rún, now in it’s 23rd year.

The Live Event category continues to impress with broadcasters delivering large scale live shows to Irish audiences; nominees this year include Big Week on the FarmWeather Live, TG4’s 20 year celebration in TG4XX BEO, and TV3’s live coverage of Storm Ophelia: a 3 News Special.

The Nominees of the Writing for Soaps and Comedy shows are Sharon Horgan (Catastrophe), Stephanie Preissner (Can’t Cope Won’t Cope), Lisa McGee (Derry Girls) and Peter Foott (The Young Offenders). In Directing for Soap or Comedy - Diarmuid Goggins is nominated for his work on TV3’s Red Rock, Jason Butler a previous winner in this category is nominated for Bridget and Eamon, alongside Cathy Brady(Can’t Cope Won’t Cope) and Peter Foott for The Young Offenders.

In a year of storms, Brexit-fallout and NAMA, Irish news and current affairs broadcasting is excelling - the News category sees the best of News coverage in the running for and Award including BBC Newsline: The Death of Martin McGuinnessRTE Six One News: ex-Hurricane Ophelia; Brexit Gets Triggered: A 3 News Special are in contention.

Current Affairs nominees include BBC NI’s Spotlight: The Nama Tapes: Corruption; Claire Byrne Live – Mother and Baby Homes Commission in Tuam, along with RTE Investigates - Nightmare to Let; and TV3’s The Tonight Show.

Documentaries chronicling Irish life are a theme in the Director Television category. Kim Bartley is nominated for Schizophrenia The Voices in My Head (also nominated for Factual), Gerry Hoban for Shaw My Astonishing Self (also nominated for Single Documentary), Aoife Kelleher for We Need to Talk About Dad (also nominated for Single Doc), and Garry Keane for Deafening, which challenges the viewer to experience the world through the eyes of four Deaf people.

Nominated in the Animation category this year is Brown Bag’s Vampirina, Wigglywoo’s The Day Henry Met, Sixteen South’s Lily’s Driftwood Bay, and Jam Media’s Little Roy; the Irish animation industry is going through a golden age – currently employing over 1600 people, with Irish studios producing award-winning shows that are broadcast all over the world.

In the Children’s category, three Australian kids move to Galway with their zombie parents in Drop Dead WeirdIs Eolaí Mé on TG4 encourages kids to get back to basics and learn how to investigate and explore the environment in which they live, the former boxer explores the stories behind the myths in Bernard Dunne Mythical Heroes, and Lurgan 2K17 features the music videos of online sensation 'TG Lurgan'.

For Camera TelevisionPatrick Jordan (The Young Offenders), Ciaran Tanham (Red Rock), Mick O’Rourke(Sacred Sites) and b (Wild Ireland - the Edge of the World);

Editing Television – Iseult Howlett (Shaw My Astonishing Self); John Murphy (Giles), Jamie Fitzpatrick (Wild Ireland), and Bob Caldwell (Pearl Harbor The Heroes Who Fought Back);

For Sound Television – Daniel Crowley, Jordan Mullen & Fionan Higgins - The Young Offenders; Mick Cassidy & Killian Fitzgerald for Sacred Sites, Paddy O’Hanlon, Garret Farrell & Michelee Fingleton Can’t Cope Won’t Cope, and Fiachra O’Hanlon and Killian Fitzgerald Pearl Harbour The Heroes who Fought Back.

Congratulations to all of the nominees.

IFTA will announce the new Host for the Television Awards Ceremony, and full ceremony details, on Friday 11th May.



Brendan O'Connor's Cutting Edge (Mind the Gap)

Dancing with the Stars (ShinaWil)

Ireland's Got Talent (Kite Entertainment)

The Tommy Tiernan Show (Power Pictures)


Bridget & Eamon (Pureclass Productions/RTE)

Derry Girls (Hat Trick / Channel 4)

Mrs Brown's Boys (BOC Productions / BBC/RTE)

The Young Offenders (Vico Films/ BBC3/RTE)


Creedon's Shannon (RTE Cork)

Hector Central (Good Company Productions/TV4)

Room to Improve (Coco Television)

Schizophrenia: The Voices in My Head (Firebrand Productions)


Éire Fhiáin An Cósta Thiar (Crossing the Line / TG4)

John Connors: The Travellers (Scratch Films / RTE)

Keeping Ireland Alive - The Health Service In a Day (IndiePics / RTE)

The Zoo TV Series (Moondance / RTE)


Autism and Me (Firebrand / RTE)

The Great Irish Sell-Off (RTÉ Factual)

Pearl Harbor - The Heroes Who Fought Back (360 Productions/Discovery)

Shaw: My Astonishing Self (Animo TV / RTE)

We Need to Talk about Dad (Waka TV/RTE)


Fair City (RTE)

Red Rock (TV3)

Ros na Rún (TG4)


Cathy Belton - Red Rock (TV3)

Sharon Horgan – Catastrophe ((Merman & Avalon TV / Channel 4))

Seana Kerslake – Can’t Cope Won’t Cope (Deadpan Productions / RTE)

Saoirse-Monica Jackson – Derry Girls (Hat Trick/Channel 4)

Hilary Rose – Young Offenders (Vico Films / BBC3/RTE)


Sean McGinley, Fir Bolg (Dearg Films / TG4)

Chris Newman, Red Rock (TV3)

Brendan O’Carroll, Mrs Brown’s Boys (BOC Productions for BBC/RTE)

Tommy Tiernan, Derry Girls (Hat Trick / Channel 4)

Chris Walley, The Young Offenders (Vico Films/ BBC3/RTE)


Big Week on the Farm (IndiePics/RTE)

Storm Ophelia: A 3 News Special (TV3)

TG4XX BEO (Gifted Empire/TG4)

Weather Live (Loosehorse/RTE)


First Dates Ireland (Coco TV / RTE)

Francis Brennan's Grand Vietnamese Tour (Waddell Media / RTE)

Gogglebox Ireland (Kite Entertainment / TV3)

Painting the Nation (IndiePics / RTE)


Aerial Ireland (Tile Films / Smithsonian)

Fairytale of New York (RTE)

Portrait of a Gallery (Wildfire Productions / RTE)

Wild Ireland - The Edge of the World (Crossing the Line / RTE/BBC)


Anthony Foley: Munsterman (Wildfire Productions / RTE)

Crash and Burn (DotTV/TG4)

Giles ( Loosehorse/RTE)

Pull Like A Dog (Wildfire/RTE)


BBC NI Spotlight - The Nama Tapes: Corruption

Claire Byrne Live (RTE)

RTE Investigates - Nightmare to Let

The Tonight Show (TV3)


BBC Newsline

Brexit Gets Triggered : A 3 News Special

RTE Six One News


Bernard Dunne's Mythical Heroes (Firebrand/RTE)

Drop Dead Weird (Telegael/RTE)

Is Eolaí Mé (Meangadh Fíbín TG4)

Lurgan 2K17 (Iris Productions /TG4)


The Day Henry Met (Wigglywoo)

Lily’s Driftwood Bay (Sixteen South)

Little Roy (Jam Media)

Vampirina (Brown Bag)


Fir Bolg (Dearg Films / TG4)

Frank O’Connor Idi Dhá Shruth (Animo TV/TG4)

Rocky Ros Muc (Below the Radar)

Ros na Run (EO Teilifis/Tyrone Productions / TG4)


Cathy Brady, Can't Cope Won't Cope (Deadpan Productions /RTE)

Jason Butler, Bridget and Eamon (Pureclass Productions / RTE)

Diarmuid Goggins, Red Rock (TV3)

Peter Foott, The Young Offenders (Vico Films / BBC3/RTE)


Sharon Horgan, Catastrophe (Merman & Avalon TV / Channel 4)

Stephanie Preissner, Can't Cope Won't Cope (Deadpan Productions /RTE)

Lisa McGee, Derry Girls (Hat Trick/Channel 4)

Peter Foott, The Young Offenders (Vico Films / BBC3/RTE)


Kim Bartley, Schizophrenia The Voices in My Head (Frontline Films/RTE)

Gerry Hoban Shaw, My Astonishing Self (Animo TV/RTE)

Garry Keane, Deafening (Mind the Gap / RTE)

Aoife Kelleher, We Need to Talk About Dad (Waka TV / RTE)


Patrick Jordan, The Young Offenders (Vico Films / BBC3/RTE)

Ciaran Tanham, Red Rock (TV3)

Mick O’Rourke, Sacred Sites (Tile Films / Smithsonian Channel)

Domenico Pontillo, Wild Ireland - the Edge of the World (Crossing the Line / RTE/BBC)


Iseult Howlett, Shaw My Astonishing Self (Animo TV / RTE)

John Murphy, Giles (Loosehorse/RTE)

Jamie Fitzpatrick, Wild Ireland - the Edge of the World (Crossing the Line / RTE/BBC)

Bob Caldwell, Pearl Harbor The Heroes Who Fought Back (360 Productions / Discovery)


Daniel Crowley, Jordan Mullen & Fionan Higgins - The Young Offenders

Mick Cassidy & Killian Fitzgerald for Sacred Sites

Paddy O’Hanlon, Garret Farrell & Michelee Fingleton Can’t Cope Won’t Cope

Fiachra O’Hanlon and Killian Fitzgerald Pearl Harbour The Heroes who Fought Back (360 Productions / Discovery)

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