Angel-backed film The Shore scoops Oscar

27 Feb 2012

Belfast native Terry Geroge, who wrote, directed and produced The Shore

Northern Ireland film The Shore has won an Oscar for Best Live Action Short Film at the 84th Annual Academy Awards last night. The film was partly funded by Lough Shore Investments, which generally invests in high-potential technology start-ups on the island of Ireland.

The film itself has been written, directed and produced by Belfast native and triple Oscar-nominated screenwriter and director Terry George.

A screenwriter with a prolific output to his name, George is probably best known for being the writer behind the films Hotel Rwanda, In the Name of the Father and The Boxer. He also wrote the screenplay for Hart’s War.

In the past he had been nominated for two Oscars: Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium in 1993 for In the Name of the Father and Best Writing, Original Screenplay for Hotel Rwanda in 2004.

On location on Coney Island, Co Down

Some of the film crew pictured on location in Coney Island, Co Down

Some of the The Shore film crew on location in Coney Island, Co Down

It was back in January when The Shore was named among five short films that would advance for final judging by Academy Branch.

As well as getting some funding from Lough Shore Investments, the film was produced in association with Northern Ireland Screen and Tourism Ireland. It was shot entirely on location in Coney Island, Co Down.

Thanking the people of Northern Ireland

Last night in LA, George thanked the people of Northern Ireland during his Oscar acceptance speech.

“Our little film was inspired by the people of Northern Ireland, Protestant and Catholic, who after 30 years of war, sat down, negotiated a peace and proved to the world that the Irish are great talkers. I want to dedicate this to them,” he said.

The Shore itself tells the story of Jim Mahon on his return to Belfast with his daughter, Patricia, after 25 years in exile having fled Belfast’s Troubles decades earlier. Ciaran Hinds of Tinker Tailor Solider Spy fame, plays the lead role.

Angel investing

As for Lough Shore Investments, which decided to back the film, it was set up in 2010 by Danny Moore, a former chief operating officer at NYSE Technologies. 

Lough Shore’s focus is typically seed to early stage investments in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland technology start-ups.

Moore said one of the main reasons Lough Shore decided to invest in the film was because of the impact it could have on branding Northern Ireland to the world as it enters a new era.

The Shore is now available to download on iTunes.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic