Cork International Film Festival January 2020 Newsletter: Submissions Now Open!

Our 64th edition of Ireland’s largest film festival welcomed over 20,000 people to 300 of the best and latest Irish and international films across more than a dozen venues in Cork City and County. In 2020, we mark our 65th milestone edition as Cork International Film Festival, together with a year-round programme of screenings and events to look forward to. The new year (and decade!) brings lots of exciting announcements – our new Director of Programming joins the Festival team, submissions are now open for filmmakers to submit films for consideration for the 65th edition and check out the CFF2019 highlights amongst this year’s Oscar nominees!

Submissions Now Open for CIFF2020

Calling all filmmakers! Submissions for the 65th edition of Cork International Film Festival are now open. The Festival welcomes submissions of features and shorts, and all forms of film production – narrative, documentary, animation, experimental. We look for interesting new voices and work that pushes boundaries and takes risks. We champion new voices and celebrate excellence in filmmaking throughout our programme. We also recognise filmmakers’ achievements through our Awards, three of which are Academy Award® qualifying.

Find out more about how to submit your film for consideration for the 65th Cork International Film Festival, November 5th – 15th 2020.


Documentary Screenings in Partnership with First Fortnight

This January, we’re delighted to start the year with special screenings in partnership with First Fortnight arts and mental health festival. 

Following its Irish Premiere at CFF2019, we kicked off the year with a partnership screening of ‘Ernie & Joe’ in the Garda Síochána College, in Templemore, Tipperary on January 2nd. ‘Ernie & Joe’ is a documentary about two Texan police officers who are changing police mental health training.

Special Screening: ‘Irene’s Ghost’ + Panel Discussion

This Wednesday, January 15th, we will present a special screening of the documentary ‘Irene’s Ghost’ in Triskel Arts Centre. 

‘Irene’s Ghost’, directed by Iain Cunningham, follows a son’s search to find out about the mother he never knew. Iain was 3 when his mother Irene died. His Dad never spoke about it, and the family silence around Irene meant that she was alive only in Iain’s imagination. Later in life, the birth of his own child inspires a journey to discover the truth about Irene, piecing together fragments of the past to uncover a long held family secret. Using animation mixed with filmed footage, Irene’s Ghost explores memory and mental health to movingly rebuild a lost life. This special screening will be followed by a panel discussion with CIFF Director of Programming, Anna Kopecká.

Screening: 19:30, Wednesday, January 15th.
Triskel Arts Centre
Tickets: €10


The Night of Ideas: ‘Wine Calling’ Screening, Panel discussion and Wine Reception

Cork International Film Festival, in partnership with the French Embassy in Ireland and Institut Français, presents the Irish premiere of French documentary ‘Wine Calling’ (Le vin se lève), directed by Bruno Sauvard and produced by Nicolas Manuel, as part of ‘The Night of Ideas’. The theme of this year’s ‘Night of Ideas’, a worldwide initiative spearheaded by Institut Français that celebrates the constant stream of ideas between countries, cultures and generations, is ‘Being Alive’.

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion on the ‘Night of Ideas’ theme “Being alive: ecological balances and the relation of man to the world, in a global context of biodiversity loss as a result of climate change” with special guest contributors:

  • Nicolas Manuel, film producer
  • Colm McCan and Pascal Rossignol, Le Caveau Wines
  • Dr. Oliver Moore, UCC Centre for Cooperative Studies and ACR2020
  • Joe McNamee, Food Columnist and Food Feature Writer, the Irish Examiner, Contributing Editor with the McKennas’ Irish Food Guide, Contributing Editor with Taste of Ireland.

The event will conclude with a special French biodynamic wine reception to sample organic and natural French wines, specially selected by Le Caveau Wines.

Screening: 18:00, Thursday, January 30th.
The Cellar Theatre, The Mardyke Entertainment Complex, Sheares Street.
Tickets: €12 / €10.

CIFF Welcomes New Director of Programming

CIFF welcomes  Anna Kopecká as the new Director of Programming.    The artistic director for Prague International Film Festival, Febiofest for the past three years, Anna Kopecká has also served as Artistic Director and later, Festival Director, for international cinematography film festival Ostrava Kamera Oko in the Czech Republic. Founder of the film production company Girl and Gun, she has also been festival coordinator for Czech film production company První veřejnoprávní.

Commenting on her appointment, Anna said: “I am very proud to become a member of such a vibrant team and to contribute to developing this renowned festival. I look forward to working with the Festival Director Fiona Clark, the Board, and all the Festival team to bring artistically daring and socially engaged films to Cork, and to enhance our position on the international festival circuit whilst celebrating the Festival’s unique Cork personality. I look forward to engaging new audiences to join us for an exceptional experience that only cinema and the Festival can give.”


Call for Applications:  ilDÁNA 2020/ 2021

TG4 and The Arts Council have announced a new season of ilDÁNA 2020 / 2021.  ilDÁNA is designed to enhance the TG4 schedule by supporting the making of an ambitious and cinematic long-form documentary on the arts in Irish. A budget of €120,000 will be made available by the partners for this landmark documentary which will have a theatrical window before its broadcast in a primetime slot on TG4. Deadline: 17:00 on Friday, 31 January 2020.

Find out more


Oscar-Nominated Festival Highlights

Taika Waititi’s ‘Jojo Rabbit’ is leading the pack of Oscar-nominated Festival highlights with six nominations for Best Picture, Best Supporting Actress (Scarlett Johansson), Production Design, Film Editing, Adapted Screenplay, and Costume Design. Featuring a stellar cast and young star Roman Griffin Davis (who has picked up a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy) as a Hitler Youth in the last days of World War II and his imaginary best friend Hitler, played by director Taika Waititi, ‘Jojo Rabbit’ is a wild, whip-smart comedy which lifted the roof on The Everyman with peels of laughter from 650 lucky ticket holders at our sold out Irish premiere.

Hot on the heels (or should we say, wheels) of ‘Jojo Rabbit’ is ‘Le Mans ’66’, with four nominations for Best Picture, Sound Mixing, Sound Editing and Film Editing. ‘Le Mans ’66’ is based on the remarkable true story of the visionary car designer Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) and fearless driver Ken Miles (Christian Bale). Shelby had been one of the few Americans to win the 24-hour Le Mans race and is hired by Ford Motor Company to build a car to take on the all-dominating Ferrari. He insists the man behind the wheel should be ill-tempered Miles.


CFF2019 played host to the most anticipated family event of the year, the Irish Premiere of ‘Frozen 2’, featuring the now Oscar-nominated original song, ‘Into the Unknown’. Together with Anna, Kristoff, Olaf, and Sven, Elsa sets out on a dangerous journey to find out why she was born with magical powers- an adventure which thrilled 650 film lovers of all ages in The Everyman at CFF2019.

Winner of both the CFF2019 Youth Jury Award and Award for Cinematic Documentary, Director Feras Fayyad’s ‘The Cave’ has received an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary Feature. ‘The Cave’ celebrates the nobility and resilience of his country-folk while cementing his reputation as one of the most vital voices working in documentary today with ‘The Cave’, a powerful documentary which follows Dr. Amani, a young woman working in a subterranean emergency medical centre in the city of Ghouta in war-ravaged Syria.

Nominated for Best Cinematography, tickets to the Irish premiere of Robert Eggers’ second film, ‘The Lighthouse’, at CFF2019 were the hottest tickets in town and sold out in record time. Set on a desolate island in New England in the 1890s, this hypnotic and hallucinatory film tells the story of two lighthouse keepers. Ephraim Winslow (Robert Pattinson) is a damaged drifter sent to work with Thomas Wake (Willem Dafoe) a crusty old soak who sees his charge as a slave and the pair slowly drive each other mad. See  it in cinemas nationwide from January 31st.