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‘Apocalypse Clown’ wins top award at Galway Film Fleadh as festival industry branch boasts biggest year


After a year in which Ireland’s major cinematic talking points came in the form of Martin McDonagh’s sumptuous all-star tragicomedy The Banshees of Inisherin and author success in local language the quiet girlmaybe it was time for something a little sillier to take center stage.

clown of the apocalypse – a wacky comedy in which a group of down-and-out clowns haphazardly traverse Ireland after the world plunges into lawlessness following a blackout – won first prize at the 35th annual Galway Film Fleadh at the west coast of the country. The film, the scripted directorial debut by George Kane and written by Kane alongside Demian Fox, Shane O’Brien and James Walmsley, was named best Irish film at an awards ceremony Sunday night ahead of the closing film of the festival, the Cyndi Lauper award. doc let the canary sing.

clown of the apocalypse had its world premiere in Galway on July 14 and will next screen at Fantasia Festival in Canada before opening on September 1 in Ireland (Wildcard Entertainment) and the UK (Vertigo Releasing).

Elsewhere, John Carlin’s drama lie of the earth won Best Irish First Feature, while The Age of Grace – The Ballad of John Murray by writer/director Sarah Share was named best Irish documentary.

Meanwhile, Galway’s industry arm, the Film Fair, boasted its best year to date, with an expanded program of events at the Galmont Hotel. For its 27th edition, the event, seen as a transatlantic bridge between Europe and the US, included sessions on virtual reality and presentations for video game professionals for the first time.

The Show’s key business-focused Marketplace saw around 700 pre-scheduled speed-dating-style meetings between filmmakers with finished films or projects in development and financiers, distributors, sales agents, broadcasters, funds and producers from around the world. . Attendees included Neon, BBC Film, Film4, StudioCanal, BFI, Bankside, Altitude, HanWay, DogWoof, Magnolia Pictures, Protagonist, WestEnd and XYZ.

The Film Fleadh found itself briefly in the eye of the SAG-AFTRA strike last week after becoming the first festival hit by industrial action. With the strike called for the evening of July 13 local time, Matthew Modine, who had flown into town for the world premiere of his film the martini drink – which took place after the crucial SAG-AFTRA vote and press conference – canceled a question-and-answer session after the film, saying the hollywood reporter he would attend the screening, but simply “as a tourist going to see a movie”.

The actor, who ran against SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher in the 2021 union leadership election, also posed with a banner expressing “solidarity” with the strike and released a lengthy statement, written while in Galway, in which he urged artists. , filmmakers and industry professionals to “stand together” to create a “more just and inclusive landscape for generations to come”.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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