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30/11/2006

'Once' To Be Recognised At Sundance Film Festival

The Irish film 'Once', directed and written by John Carney ('Bachelors Walk', 'On the Edge') has been selected for competition at the prominent US Sundance Film Festival.
Once stars Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova in the leading roles and is a modern-day musical set on the streets of Dublin telling the story of a busker and an immigrant, who fall in love over an eventful week, as they write, rehearse and record a number of songs.
The annual Sundance Film Festival, which was originally founded by Robert Redford, is world-renowned as a showcase for the best in new independent cinema. This year the festival runs from January 18-28 and will include 82 world premieres, among it’s 122 feature titles selected from 25 different countries. The festival received over 1,435 submissions from countries outside of the US. Once will feature in the World Cinema Competition category of the festival.
“Selection for this world class festival signifies real recognition for one of Ireland’s most gifted film directors,” said Simon Perry, Chief Executive, Irish Film Board.
“We’re delighted that our small film has been recognised by such a prestigious festival. Given that the film was shot on a small budget we always knew that we would need the recognition by a major festival to give the film a life outside of Ireland, so we’re thrilled that the film will receive its US premiere at Sundance. We hope Irish audiences will enjoy the film when it is released in Ireland next year,” said John Carney, Director.
“It’s an honour to be selected for such an important festival, and we’re looking forward to attending” said Martina Niland, Producer, Samson Films.
Other Irish films which have screened in competition at Sundance include Song for a Raggy Boy directed by Aisling Walsh in 2003 and Paul Greengrass’ Bloody Sunday, which scooped the Audience Award in 2002.
Once was produced by Samson Films with funding from the Irish Film Board. Irish audiences will have an opportunity to see the film when it is released in cinemas by Buena Vista International (Ireland) next year.
The UK-Irish co-production documentary The Future is Unwritten, about Joe Strummer directed by Julian Temple and co-produced by Alan Moloney was also selected in the World Cinema Documentary section of the festival.
(DS)
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