Following the recent meeting of the Investment Committee of the ILBF, The Irish Language Broadcast Fund has announced its latest funding decisions. Awards were made across several genre of programming, including documentaries, factual entertainment & re-versioned animation. The deadlines for the second and third rounds this year are May 27th and September 30th respectively.
Documentaries receiving funding include ‘Ballaí Dhoire’ from Dearcán Media in Derry which will examine the origin and history behind Derry’s Walls. Belfast production company, Bóthar Ard Teo received funding for ‘Iomann don Chathair Ghortaithe’ for TG4, which will look at how the physical layout of Belfast’s city centre has changed through the years. Moreover, Waddell Media Ltd received funding for a documentary series retracing the now extinct rail routes of Ulster entitled ‘Iarnród Uladh’ and The Picture House was successful in their submission for a series covering miscarriages of justice in which decisions were overturned on appeal entitled ‘Achomharc’. Both of the latter series will air on TG4.
Funding was also awarded for two half-hour documentaries to be produced by ILBF trainee producers currently working with Big Mountain Ltd and Imagine Media Ltd. It is hoped that both projects, ‘Athair agus Mac’ and ‘Amhráin an Fhir Bháin’ will air on BBC NI and TG4 later in the year. Imagine Media Ltd also received funding for a documentary entitled ‘Fear an Damhsa’ which will follow the story of Zimbabwean dancer Tura Arutura, who has fallen in love with the Irish language, as he prepares to compete in sean-nós dancing at this year’s Oireachtas in Killarney. Finally, Big Mountain received funding for the third series of the successful magazine series ‘Imeall Geal’.
Where Factual Entertainment is concerned, Tobar Productions received funding for ‘Ar Skype A Chéile’, a series in which a pair of presenters will travel the length and breadth of the country in opposite directions. The challenge of the series will be that the series’ presenters will both will have to rely entirely on their Irish speaking online friends for food, accommodation and transport while also raising money for their favourite charity on the way. For younger audiences Stirling Film & Television Productions was awarded funding for two projects, namely ‘I.N.K.’, a reversioned children’s animation series and ‘Ceol ón Chlann’, an archive music documentary series which will feature some of Ireland’s most popular music families such as the Corrs and the Blacks. All three Factual Entertainment series will air on TG4.
Below the Radar received funding for a second series of ‘Luí na Talún’, in which country life and modern environmental issues will be examined. The series will again be presented by Jarlath Burns, Máire Bhreathnach & Nodlaig Brolly. Triplevision Productions were awarded funding for a short series entitled ‘Cairde i gCéin’, the story of West Belfast teacher, Diarmaid Ua Bruadair, his wife Alvina, his 3 young children and 15 volunteers as they travel over 6,000 miles to live and work in one of the poorest communities in Brazil. Both series will air on BBC NI.
Finally, funding was awarded to Sonas Productions for ‘Ag Damhsa Ar Na Bánta’, a music/documentary series which looks at the origins, influences and rise in popularity of dance in Ireland, for TG4.
The ILBF has an annual fund of £3m, provided by the British Film Institute. Funding is made available to production companies based in Northern Ireland. It expects to deliver not less than 70 hours of Irish language output per annum which is broadcast on TG4, BBC NI and RTÉ. Its remit also includes funding for multiplatform and educational material as well as the provision of training opportunities to Irish speakers working in the production sector.
Funding deadlines for the second and third rounds this year have been confirmed as 12 noon on Friday, May 27th and 12 noon on Friday, September 30th.