Three Irish films receive Oscar nominations

3 Feb 2010

Three films co-funded by RTE, the Irish Film Board and the Arts Council have been nominated for the Academy Awards providing a valuable showcase for the emerging Irish digital media content business.

Nominated for Best Short Animated Film, the six-minute film of ‘Granny O’Grimm’s Sleeping Beauty’ received funding through the ‘Frameworks’ scheme from RTÉ, the Irish Film Board and the Arts Council.

Directed by Nicky Phelan, produced by Darragh O’Connell for Brown Bag Films and written and performed by comedian Kathleen O’Rourke, it tells the story of a seemingly sweet old lady who terrifies her little granddaughter at bedtime with her dark version of the Sleeping Beauty fairytale. ‘Granny O’Grimm’s Sleeping Beauty’ was previously broadcast on RTÉ Two in December 2009.

Nominated in the Best Short Film category, The Door was produced by Octagon Films under the Short Cuts scheme funded by RTÉ and The Irish Film Board and is based on the true story of a father and his young daughter set in Russia in 1986.

The Door is produced by James Flynn (who has also produced RAW, currently being shown on RTÉ One on Sunday nights and LOVE/HATE, a new drama series forlater this year on RTÉ Television. The Door was written and directed by Juanita Wilson and will be broadcast on RTÉ Two on Monday, 15 February at 11.25pm.

The Tomm Moore-directed The Secret of Kells, which features the voices of Brendan Gleeson and Mick Lally, is nominated in the Best Animated Film category along with Coraline, Fantastic Mr Fox, The Princess and the Frog and Up.

It is an animated retelling of the provenance of Ireland’s cherished Artefact, the Book Of Kells. With the Viking hordes approaching, the monks of Kells are forced to turn their attention from transcribing manuscripts to building barricades.

The future of the precious book is in jeopardy and it falls to Brendan, young nephew of the abbot Cellach, to save the day. The development of the film was supported by RTÉ. The Secret of Kells will be broadcast on RTÉ Television later this year. 

“Huge congratulations to these three production companies who have been nominated for Oscars this year,” said Steve Carson, director of Programmes, RTÉ Television.

“It’s a huge source of pride and gratification that we have played a role in supporting world class talent.

“That these productions have such an impact on the world stage, and have gained this recognition from their peers, is a wonderful and deserved acknowledgement of Irish talent and Irish filmmaking,” Carson said.

By John Kennedy

The Secret of Kells

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years