CIFF Newsletter – What’s on in August 2021

Image: ‘Party’, 2020, digital collage (Elinor O’Donovan)



While the month of August is a time for a well-earned rest for many, the CIFF team are stepping up another gear as we put plans in place for a wonderful Festival this November. As the 66th Festival draws ever closer, we have plenty of news and updates for you this month.

We are still receiving applications for Year Two of the IGNITE Documentary Talent Development Programme with our partner Docs Ireland, Belfast. If you are an Irish or Northern Irish filmmaker embarking on your first or second non-fiction feature film, be sure to check out this programme.

We’re thrilled to announce the commission of emerging visual artist & Sample Studios Graduate Artist in Residence, Elinor O’Donovan, to create a unique contemporary artwork in response to our programme at the 66th Cork International Film Festival this November.

Celebrating the richness and diversity of culture in Ireland, the 16th edition of Culture Night/Oíche Chultúir takes place on 17th September and CIFF is delighted to present a free online programme of Irish language short films from our 2020 Festival.

For more information and the latest filmmaking and industry news and opportunities, see below.

IGNITE – Apply Now for Year Two

Call for Year Two Applications

Emerging documentary filmmaker? Planning on applying for the second year of the IGNITE Documentary Talent Development Programme? Make sure to get your application in by FridaySeptember 3rd.

IGNITE is a cross-border talent development programme directed towards emerging Irish and Northern Irish documentary filmmakers embarking on their first or second non-fiction feature film. After the enormous success of Year One of the scheme, during which six feature documentary projects from emerging filmmakers were developed through training, workshops and one-to-one mentoring, we are now calling for applications for Year Two.

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Artist Elinor O’Donovan Commissioned for CIFF2021


Image (l): ‘Sun’, 2021, as part of ‘Windows’ an exhibition on billboards in Cork City, commissioned by Notes to Cork; Elinor O’Donovan

We’re thrilled to announce the commission of emerging visual artist and Sample-Studios Graduate Artist in Residence, Elinor O’Donovan, to create a unique contemporary artwork that responds to our programme at the 66th Cork International Film Festival in November 2021.

Elinor will create a new artwork, presented and exhibited in her playful style, throughout Festival venues in Cork City during CIFF2021 in November and on-screen and online. You can catch Elinor’s current solo exhibition, Brain Worms, at The Lord Mayor’s Pavilion, Fitzgerald’s Park, Cork until September 9th.

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CIFF at Culture Night/Oíche Chultúir 2021

Looking forward to Culture Night/Oíche Chultúir 2021? Cork International Film Festival will proudly present a special online programme of Irish language short films, selected from its 65th Festival edition in 2020, for this year’s Culture Night. Available to watch on our Digital Festival Platform, you will have the opportunity to enjoy three short cinematic gems as Gaeilge, a filmmaker Q&A session hosted by the Festival’s Programming Team, and hear more about Cork International Film Festival. We hope you will join us on 17th September.

‘The Bright Side’ in Cinemas + Competition

Last year, Cork International Film Festival was extremely proud to present the World Premiere of Ruth Meehan’s poignant, dark comedy ‘The Bright Side’. Now, the CIFF2020 Audience Award winner will be available to view in a cinema near you from Friday, August 20th.

We’ve teamed up with The Gate Cinemas to offer you and a friend the chance to win a Cinema Pass for 2 to a screening of your choice in The Gate Cinemas, Cork from August 20th. To be in with a chance to win, simply send your answer to the following question to by Thursday August 19th.

What is the profession of The Bright Side’s lead character Kate?
A. Teacher
B. Singer
C. Stand-Up Comedian

News & Opportunities

Photo by CIFF staff.

This July, we were delighted to attend both the Cannes Film Festival and Galway Film Fleadh in person to watch exceptional films on the big screen with fellow film lovers in a safe environment. We look forward to welcoming Festival audiences back to cinemas, in a similar manner in November.


Billy Newman with Film Reel [from CIFF Digital Archive, in partnership with UCC]

We receive film submissions from all over the world every year, and our team watches them all to discover the very best for Cork. For 2021, we received 4,254 submissions, a 16% increase on 2020 and our largest number to date – we can’t wait to share these riches at CIFF2021!