Archive for October, 2009

Kino in Cork will Close

28th October 2009 by Maura McHugh

The Irish Times reports today that Kino, Cork’s arthouse cinema, will be closing next month after a firm of architects began a High Court proceeding to recover €50,000 owed for design work.

Mr Hannigan said the debt arose from a plan he developed in 2003 to expand the 188-seat single-screen cinema into a three-screen facility with a total capacity of some 360 seats.

“We had got a grant of €750,000 from the Arts Council and the Film Board for the project which was costing around €3 million in total. I had managed to secure substantial borrowings but we were still left with a shortfall of around €1 million,” he explained.

“Because of that shortfall, we were unable to proceed with the work so we never drew down the grant money but . . . we had to do a considerable amount of preparatory work including getting a design done and that’s where the debt stems from.

“It’s ironic really that our plan to actually expand the arthouse facilities in Cork has now resulted in the city losing its only dedicated arthouse cinema,” said Mr Hannigan, who established the Kino in a former pool hall on Washington Street in November 1996.

James Parriott Interview

27th October 2009 by Maura McHugh

On the BBC Writersroom web site there is an extensive interview with US screenwriter and showrunner James Parriott (Grey’s Anatomy, Ugly Betty, Sons of Anarchy).

In it he talks about pitching, how the Writers’ Room works in America for creating television series, and the changes he foresees in how television programmes will be funded in the coming years.

The piece is well worth reading.

Digital Theatre Download

27th October 2009 by Maura McHugh

The Stage reports that theatrical live productions from prestigious companies, filmed in high definition, will be available to download from a new web site called Digital Theatre.

Launching this week, the first two productions to available to buy will be English Touring Theatre’s Far From the Madding Crowd, recorded at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre in Guildford, and The Container, presented in association with the Young Vic and Amnesty International. Currently, Digital Theatre is working with five partner theatre companies – the RSC, Young Vic, Royal Court, ETT and the Almeida Theatre Company.

The initiative has been set up by theatre director Robert Delamere and TV and radio producer Tom Shaw. Five shows will be made available in the first season, with future productions due to be announced and available for download shortly. Royalties from the shows will be paid to the theatres involved, as well as creatives and performers and agreements have been reached between Digital Theatre and Equity and Bectu over payments to participants.

ETT director Rachel Tackley said the filmed version of its show “cleverly captures the raw energy and dynamism of the live production”, while Royal Court director Dominic Cooke said that “the potential of digital technology to connect with a worldwide audience is genuinely exciting.”

Cork Festival Talks Industry

26th October 2009 by Maura McHugh

The 54th Corona Cork Film Festival takes place from November 1-8, and will offer a splendid array of premières, documentaries, film tributes, special guests, exhibitions, short films, animations, workshops, and courses.

In association with MEDIA Desk Ireland the festival will be coordinating a discussion about film production at the University College Cork, on Friday, November 6th from 2.30pm to 5pm.

“Having been impressed by the cultural and economic enquiry of the recent Global Irish Economic Forum, we invite those active in the Irish film, television and new media sector to attend the Cork forum to engage in reflection and debate,” says Festival Director, Mick Hannigan.

“In the European Year of Creativity and Innovation, we are delighted to partner with the MEDIA supported Cork Film Festival in this creative forum which will allow for blue sky thinking,” Siobhan O’Donoghue, CEO of MEDIA Desk Ireland continues.

Screen Producers Ireland will host a networking reception for the event’s participants. For further information contact MEDIA Desk Ireland.

The Abbey Stays Put

22nd October 2009 by Maura McHugh

The Irish Times reports today that the Abbey Theatre will remain in its current location for at least another five to six years as the Office of Public Works (OPW) has initiated a feasibility study on the possibility of relocating it in the GPO.

Minister of State for the OPW Martin Mansergh said a “considerable degree of pressure has been taken off the Abbey Theatre” because of its recent refurbishment. “It is quite happy it will be able to continue for the next five or six years until a new site is developed, hopefully in time for the centenary of the Rising in 2016.”

He told the Dáil that to date €219,590.32 had been spent in the development of a new national theatre. The Government had originally decided to relocate the Abbey to a site at George’s dock.

Dr Mansergh said the work done was “project specific”, not “site specific”, and “the vast majority of it could be transferred into the GPO if that is the decision”.

Fine Gael arts spokeswoman Olivia Mitchell described the GPO proposal as a “red herring” and said the preparation for a design competition had been going on for years. “Three Ministers have dealt with it and it still has not been announced.” She would have loved the GPO as a location “if it had come up five or six years ago when it was first announced”. But she was concerned that “it is merely a time-wasting exercise”.