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Irish Screen America reveals line-up for NYC showcase this October
09 Oct 2019 : News Desk
Irish Screen America has announced the return of its annual New York festival from Friday 25th to Sunday 27th October.

The festival’s line-up includes premieres of new Irish feature films, short films, filmmaker Q+A’s and an Opening Night Awards Ceremony. 

ISA, the organization which connects Irish media-makers with American audiences, opens on Friday, October 25th with the NY premiere of Float Like a Butterfly, directed by Carmel Winters. The second feature film from Winters, Float Like A Butterfly tells the story of a young traveller woman, played by Hazel Doupe, who dreams of becoming a boxer. The film won the FIPRESCI Prize for the Discovery Programme at the Toronto International Film Festival after its World Premiere last year, before going on to become a critical and commercial success in Ireland. Irish Screen America is honouring Winters with its Jim Sheridan Award for Outstanding Achievement, while Hazel Doupe will be the recipient of a Rising Star Award. 

Doupe won’t be the only boxer on-screen during the festival. Katie, an exciting sports documentary, charting the rebuilding of champion boxer Katie Taylor’s career will also be shown. Katie Taylor has won six amateur European championships, five world amateur championships and is an Olympic Gold Medal winner from the London 2012 Olympic Games. After a disastrous campaign at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, the film unravels the deeply personal reasons behind the career low and shows the champions grit and determination to start over as a professional. Katie won her first world title within a year and became the first woman in history to headline her own Sky Sports show.

Another documentary playing at the festival is the humanitarian portrait of life in a conflict zone, Gaza. Elegantly shot on the ground in Gaza and masterfully crafted by two Northern Irish filmmakers, Gaza offers a rare chance to be immersed in Palestinian life, as we glimpse behind the walls of this misunderstood land to get to know the real people who inhabit it. Inside a Gaza City taxi, we meet a teacher, a student and a barber, who all share their dreams and daily predicaments with the driver, Ahmed, using surprising humor and candor. Gaza was recently selected by IFTA as the Irish entry for Best International Feature Film at the 2020 Academy Awards. Directors Garry Keane and Andrew McDonnell will be in attendance for a post-screening Q+A. 

The festival will close with a darkly comic melodrama about life in a small Irish town called Dark Lies the Island. Moe Dunford (Vikings, Michael Inside) and Peter Coonan (The Drummer and the Keeper, King of the Travellers) star as two brothers trying to crawl out from the shadow of their domineering father while his young wife (Charlie Murphy) is trapped in a whirlpool of sexual jealousy. As the story unfolds over the course of a week, a long-standing family feud comes to a head, forcing all participants to face up to the truth. Directed by Ian Fitzgibbon from a script by Irish author Kevin Barry and starring two of Ireland’s best-loved comedians Pat Shortt and Tommy Tiernan, Dark Lies the Island is a tour-de-force of Irish talent. 

The Irish Screen America festival has also curated a selection of short films, including an eclectic mix of drama (Run; directed by Caroline Grace-Cassidy & Róisín Kearney), animation (The Bird and the Whale; directed by Carol Freeman) and with a generous sprinkle of comedy (I Didn’t, I Wasn’t, I Amen’t…; directed by Laoise Sexton, Mother; directed by Natasha Waugh, The Butterfly Love Song; directed by Luke Morgan, and Mary; directed by Shaun O’Connor). There will be a $500 prize for the short that wins the Spirit of the Festival Award. Meanwhile, director of the short film Ciúnas (Silence), Tristan Heanue and director of the short Starry Night, Emma Smith, will also be bestowed with a pair of 2019 Rising Star Awards. 

"Irish Cinema has earned its place on the world stage," says Niall McKay, Executive Director of Irish Screen America. "Each year, Irish films continue to garner top awards. We are proud to bring the latest in contemporary Irish Cinema to the U.S."

The mission statement of Irish Screen America is to support and guide Irish media-makers by showcasing their work and fostering partnerships in the two largest cities for the entertainment industry in the U.S., as well as its annual festival, the organization holds quarterly film premieres, industry panels, and networking events. Irish Screen America will also be hosting an Irish cinema event in Los Angeles as part of Ireland Week 2019 (November 1st– 9th). 

Irish Screen America New York takes place from Friday 25thto Sunday 27th October at NYU's Cantor Film Center, in partnership with Glucksman Ireland House NYU and the Irish Arts Center. 

Click here for more info and to purchase tickets.


Opening Night Reception

Friday 25thOctober– Glucksman Ireland House – 5pm

Float Like a Butterfly

Friday 25thOctober – NYU Cantor Film Center – 7pm

Director Q+A with Carmel Winters


Saturday 26thOctober – NYU Cantor Film Center – 5:30pm


Saturday 26thOctober – NYU Cantor Film Center – 7:30pm

Director Q+A with Garry Keane and Andrew McConnell

Irish Short Films

Sunday 27thOctober – NYU Cantor Film Center – 5:30pm

Q+A with filmmakers

Dark Lies the Island

Sunday 27thOctober – NYU Cantor Film Center – 8pm

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