21 September 2023 The Irish Film & Television Network
Donegal-based psychological drama God's Creatures starring Paul Mescal selected for Cannes Directors' Fortnight 2022
19 Apr 2022 : Nathan Griffin
Director's Fortnight 2022
A24’s Irish psychological drama God’s Creatures, from directors Saela Davis and Anna Rose Holmer, has been selected for the prestigious Cannes Directors’ Fortnight 2022.

Starring Emily Watson and Paul Mescal, God’s Creatures filmed on location in Donegal, and received funding support from Screen Ireland, the Western Regional Audiovisual Production Fund (WRAP Fund), BBC Films, and local support from the Donegal Film Office. A24 has taken worldwide rights on the project.

Written by Shane Crowley and produced by Oscar and BAFTA nominee Fodhla Cronin O’Reilly (Lady Macbeth, Ammonite), God’s Creatures is set in a rain-swept Irish fishing village where a woman’s lies to protect her son have a devastating impact on the community, her family, and herself.

“We couldn’t be more thrilled to premiere God’s Creatures at Directors’ Fortnight,” Irish producer Fodhla Cronin O’Reilly said about the selection. “It has been a joy to work with such a special and unique group of collaborators.”

“Saela & Anna are visionary filmmakers who connected deeply and sensitively with Shane’s personal Irish set script,” added O’Reilly. “We’re also delighted to tell this special story with Emily, Paul, Aisling and all whose performances are both intimate and iconic. We look forward to sharing our film with audiences this year.” 

The Directors' Fortnight has grown in reputation in recent years, with the non-competitive independent sidebar to the central Cannes Film Festival playing host to the premieres of Oscar winner Chloé Zhao’s The Rider, Sean Baker’s The Florida Project, and Robert Eggers’ The Lighthouse.

23 selections were announced this morning by artistic director Paolo Moretti, whose due to step down from his position following this year’s edition. Moretti confirmed that one further title from Asia will also be added to the line-up in the coming days.

Recent Irish Oscar nominee Jessie Buckley will also feature in the Directors' Fortnight following the selection of Alex Garland’s Cannes debut Men, which is led by the Kerry actress. Men will have a special screening at Cannes before A24 release the project in the US this May.

Kelly Reichardt will receive the honorary Carrosse d’Or award from the Directors' Fortnight, which will be presented following a masterclass with the American director at the festival. Reichardt also has a film, Showing Up, premiering in competition at Cannes.

God’s Creatures also sees IFTA Rising Star Aisling Franciosi co-stars, following her award-winning performances in The Nightingale and TV series The Fall. Other cast members include Declan Conlon (Calvary), Marion O’Dwyer (Love, Rosie), and Toni O’Rourke (Wildfire). 

Watson’s credits include Chernobyl and Breaking The Waves, while Mescal recently garnered Emmy and Critics’ Choice Award nods for his role as Connell in Normal People.

Crew involved on the project include local production manager Maria Mulhall (Lola) and production designer Inbal Weinberg (Beasts of No Nation, Three Billboard Outside Ebbing), editor Julia Bloch (Green Room), and director of photography Chayse Irvin (BlacKkKlansman, Hannah).

Saela Davis and Anna Rose Holmer’s previous film The Fits premiered at 2015 Venice Film Festival and played Sundance the following year. It earned Spirit Awards and Gotham Awards nominations and won the Critics Award at Deauville Film Festival.

The 54th edition of Directors' Fortnight runs May 18th to 27th.

The full list of selected projects:

Scarlet by Pietro Marcello – Opening Film
1976 by Manuela Martelli
The Water by Elena López Riera
The Dam by Ali Cherri
The Super 8 Years by Annie Ernaux & David Ernaux-Briot
Ashkal by Youssef Chebbi
The Five Devils by Léa Mysius
De Humani Corporis Fabrica by Véréna Paravel & Lucien Castaing-Taylor
Continental Drift (South) by Lionel Baier
Enys Men by Mark Jenkin
Falcon Lake by Charlotte Le Bon
Will-o’-the-Wisp by João Pedro Rodrigues
Funny Pages by Owen Kline
God’s Creatures by Anna Rose Holmer & Saela Davis
Harkis by Philippe Faucon
Men by Alex Garland
The Mountain by Thomas Salvador
Pamfir by Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk
The Green Perfume by Nicolas Pariser – Closing Film
Paris Memories by Alice Winocour
Under the Fig Trees by Erige Sehiri
One Fine Morning by Mia Hansen-Løve
A Male by Fabian Hernández

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