Archive for January, 2010

2010 Rising Stars

28th January 2010 by Maura McHugh

IFTN reports that the 2010 Irish Film Board/IFTA Rising Star award nominees have been announced.

The nominees are:

  • Writer/director of Eamon, Margaret Corkery
  • Writer/director of The Secret of Kells, Tomm Moore
  • Writer/director of Savage, Brendan Muldowney
  • Savage’s lead actor, Darren Healy
  • Misfits star Robert Sheehan
  • Director of His & Hers, Ken Wardrop.

Aine Moriarty, Chief Executive of the Irish Film and Television Academy said of the Rising Star Award: “This important Award puts the spotlight on great Irish talent making a significant mark in the film industry at large. These six exciting Irish stars have shown themselves to be world class talents in their respective fields and I have no doubt that they will be counted among the wealth of leading Irish talents over the coming years. IFTA is proud to put the international spotlight on Ireland’s Rising Stars and acknowledges the Irish Film Board’s ongoing support of new Irish industry talent.”

Simon Perry, Chief Executive of Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board said: “It’s been an interesting time for Irish film with an abundance of talent both in front of and behind the camera emerging. The Rising Star Award recognises and champions new creative talent which is a key objective of the Irish Film Board. This year’s nominees have all demonstrated exceptional talent in their field and we are delighted to see their achievements recognized with the award.”

The winner will be announced at the 7th Annual Irish Film & Television Awards will take place at Dublin’s Burlington Hotel on Saturday, 20 February 2010.

Playwriting Course

27th January 2010 by Maura McHugh

Gavin Kostick will teach a ten-week Playwriting Course every Thursday evening from the 4th February to 15th April at the Irish Writers’ Centre in Parnell Square, Dublin 1. Cost: €280

Playwright and dramaturg Gavin Kostick will lead participants through the key demands of writing for performance. Over ten weeks, central elements of drama including openings, the playwright’s imagination, plots and structures, dialogue, effective dramatic language, characterization and monologues will be addressed. These areas are investigated through a broad range of examples supported by discussion and practical exercises. As the course progresses the work of individual participants will be read and discussed. Each person attending the course will be encouraged to develop and complete a draft of an original project of his or her own.

The aim of the whole course is to develop practical skills for writing for drama and to encourage participants to widen their conceptual horizons in writing for live performance.

Online Theatrical Performances

26th January 2010 by Maura McHugh

The New York Times features an article about a new pay-for-view online service called OnTheBoards.tv. Its mission is to provide a platform for progressive contemporary performances from around the world.

Lane Czaplinski, the artistic director of On the Boards, also hopes to raise larger questions about the ramifications of translating live art onto the screen at a time when society is increasingly gravitating toward mediated experiences.

“What our culture cares about, it tends to record and distribute,” Mr. Czaplinski said during a recent panel discussion at Performance Space 122, a New York partner of OntheBoards.tv. He pointed to sports and pornography, to titters from the industry crowd. “The live artist in a theater is still paramount. But we’re in a shifting world.”

The Cinderella simile is an apt one for contemporary performing artists, who typically get scant recognition or compensation for their toils. Documentation of the quality Mr. Daniels provides is prohibitively expensive ($10,000 to $15,000), resulting in paltry archival options and little hope of a wider audience for shows that take months or years to develop only to disappear after limited runs.

“What we’re doing is creating the live-art equivalent of a museum catalog,” Sarah Wilke, managing director for On the Boards, said. “The world is definitely moving toward a wider view of experience. I think the arts are in danger of losing market share if we don’t provide a parallel experience.”

Irish theatre in 2010

25th January 2010 by Maura McHugh

The Irish Times reported last week that despite a dispute over costs the new 2,000-seat Grand Canal Theatre will have its gala opening in March.

The paper also had a feature article entitled “Curtain up on a new theatrical era?”, which discussed the state of the Irish theatre industry in the face of funding cuts and the economic downturn. Here’s a snippet:

Another way of attracting larger audiences is to cast a top star in a lead role. “For instance,” explains Hynes, “this season on Broadway, a play called A Steady Rain, which stars Hugh Jackman and Daniel Craig, and which is in fact directed by our own John Crowley, more or less sold out almost before it opened and has completely made back its original investment and will return profits to its investors.”

Hynes cautions, however, that casting a star should “be within the context of the remit as subsidised theatres funded by the Irish taxpayer. You can’t suddenly turn around and start operating with commercial antennae. Because why are you being subsidised in the first place?”

Producer Anne Clarke, who works in both commercial and subsidised theatre, doesn’t see the necessity for a difference in approach or outlook when considering either. “Some people talk about commercial theatre as being cynical, cheap, only there to make money,” she says. “In my experience, that’s not the case. I took the same care and attention in casting and producing The Last Days of the Celtic Tiger and The Goat.”

For the sector to survive in the coming year, which Clarke concedes will be “bumpy”, she believes it “needs to do two things: one, continue to find ways of making work; two, not to lose courage while focusing more on the audience. It would be easy for people to keep their heads down, make work they think people want to see – that’s not the way out of this.”

BAFTA Nominees

21st January 2010 by Maura McHugh

BAFTA has announced its nominations for the Orange British Academy Film Awards in 2010.

Following are the nominees for the two screenwriting awards.

Original Screenplay

  • The Hangover Jon Lucas, Scott Moore
  • The Hurt Locker Mark Boal
  • Inglourious Basterds Quentin Tarantino
  • A Serious Man Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
  • Up Bob Peterson, Pete Docter

Adapted Screenplay

  • District 9 Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell
  • An Education Nick Hornby
  • In The Loop Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci, Tony Roche
  • Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire Geoffrey Fletcher
  • Up In The Air Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner

A full list of the nominees in all categories is available on the web site.