8th of March 2017
The countdown begins for the Irish film industry’s biggest night of the year, acknowledging and rewarding the industry’s great work and achievements in this Golden Age of Irish Cinema, at the annual Awards Ceremony taking place at the Round Room of the Mansion House on Saturday 8th April 2017. The Academy will welcome 500 guests from across the world of Film & Drama, all coming together to celebrate the continued great work and success of Ireland’s home industry and to celebrate Michael Gambon’s Lifetime Achieve Award.
Nominations have been shortlisted by Irish Academy Members alongside a specialist Jury panel of industry experts from around the world.
Academy CEO, Aine Moriarty stated that:
“These great Irish Nominees are a testament to the hard work and achievements by Irish creative talent within the film and television industry, delivering world-class standards of work and we look forward to showcasing and celebrating their achievements at the Awards Ceremony”.
Best Film Nominations:
The Best Film Nominees this year are A Date For Mad Mary, Darren Thornton’s touching tale of the troubled but endearing ‘mad’ Mary McArdle; Whit Stillman’s drama Love & Friendship, which perfectly blends period drama with comedy led by the vivacious Lady Susan Vernon; The Siege of Jadotville from Richie Smyth, with its stunning exploration of the long-ignored and brave Irish troops in the Congo; the delicate portrait of the one-hundred-year-old Roseanne McNulty as she reflects on her life in Jim Sheridan’s The Secret Scripture; Juanita Wilson’s Tomato Red, with its look at the forceful voice of prejudice amidst the lives of small town drifters and Peter Foot’s feature debut The Young Offenders, the hysterical Cork comedy based on the cocaine seizure of 2007.
Three of the Best Films are feature debuts for their directors, including Darren Thornton for A Date for Mad Mary, Peter Foott for The Young Offenders (who are both also nominated for Best Script); Richie Smyth for The Siege of Jadotville. They are joined by veteran Irish filmmaker Jim Sheridan, for The Secret Scripture.
Nominated for Best Scriptwriter in Film is Kevin Brodbin for the Siege of Jadotville, Juanita Wilson for Tomato Red, Darren Thornton and his brother Colin Thornton are nominated as co-writers of A Date for Mad Mary and Peter Foott as scriptwriter for The Young Offenders.
In the Actor in a Leading Role Film category, Jamie Dornan is nominated for his performance leading the small Irish UN troop in the Congo in The Siege of Jadotville; Michael Fassbender is shortlisted for his skilful turn in The Light Between Oceans; Colm Meaney for his sharp and engaging depiction of Martin McGuinness in The Journey (opposite Timothy Spall’s Dr Ian Paisley), Mark O’Halloran for his brilliant portrayal of one man struggles with his own mind and a wiped memory in History’s Future; and Alex Murphy for his breakout and endearing performance in The Young Offenders.
For Actress in A Leading role Film, Caoilfhionn Dunne is shortlisted for the dark drama’ In View’, and Seana Kerslake gets her first nomination for her turn in ‘A Date for Mad Mary’; and Aisling Loftus also gets her first nomination for her breakout performance in ‘Property of the State’; Ruth Negga receives her first of two nominations, for her performance in ‘Loving’. Catherine Walker for her performance in the occult drama ‘A Dark Song’;
Nominee Actors in Supporting Role in Film are Colin Farrell for Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them, Brendan Gleeson for Trespass Against Us, Ciaran Hinds for his performance in Bleed for This, Jason O’Mara for The Siege of Jadotville, and newcomer Chris Walley for The Young Offenders.
Charleigh Bailey is nominated for Supporting Actress in Film for A Date for Mad Mary alongside Susan Lynch for her performance as the ruthless baddie in Bad Day for the Cut; Simone Kirby for her insightful performance in Notes on Blindness; Hilary Rose as the exasperated mam in The Young Offenders, and Fiona Shaw for Kerry Babies drama Out of Innocence.
Television Drama Nominations:
Television Drama being produced across Ireland north and south, continues to enthral both Irish and International audiences with compelling scripts, great direction and performances all round. In the Best Drama category, the second season of the Galway based Irish language drama An Klondike with its daring and gritty world of the late 1800s gold rush; ‘Smalltown’, the lonely rural drama delicately handling emigration, death and loss; The Fall continues the tense standoff between a cold and calculating serial killer and the female detective superintendent pursing him; fellow Northern Irish epic fantasy series ‘Game of Thrones’, brings to life the epic battles and fight for the throne of Westeros; new legal drama ‘Striking Out’ set in the cutting and conflict-driven lives of a group of Dublin solicitors; historical action series ‘Vikings’, follows the legendary and epic battles of Ragnar Lothbrok.
Nominations in Best Director Drama are Anthony Byrne for Ripper Street, Neasa Hardiman for Z: The Beginning of Everything, Dathaí Keane for An Klondike, and Ciaran Donnelly for Vikings. The nominees for Best Writer Drama are Gerard Barrett for Smalltown, Marcus Fleming for An Klondike, Barry Devlin for wartime drama filmed in NI, My Mother and Other Strangers , and James Phelan for 1916 commemorative comedy drama Wrecking the Rising.
The nominations across all four Drama acting categories show just how well Irish actors are being received for their Irish and international work. The strongly contested Actor in a Leading Role in Drama category sees Dara Devaney (last year’s winner) nominated for An Klondike, Cillian Murphy for Peaky Blinders, Aidan Turner for season two of Poldark, James Nesbitt for The Secret and Tom Vaughan-Lawlor for Trial of the Century.
In the Actress in a Leading Role category, Caitriona Balfe has been shortlisted for her role as US show Outlander, Amy Huberman for Striking Out, Elaine Cassidy for No Offence, Anne-Marie Duff for Murder, and Ruth Negga receives her second IFTA nomination this year, for her performance in cult US show Preacher.
Liam Cunningham is shortlisted for his role in Game of Thrones, in the Actor in a Supporting Role Drama category along with Ned Dennehy for An Klondike, Moe Dunford for Vikings, Andrew Scott, for The Hollow Crown and Robert Sheehan for Fortitude. Ruth Bradley is nominated for Humans for the Actress in a Supporting Role Drama category, alongside Sinead Cusack for Call the Midwife; Dominique McElligott for Netflix show House of Cards, Charlene McKenna for Ripper Street, and Charlie Murphy for Happy Valley.
George Morrison Feature Documentary
The strongly contested Feature Documentary category sees Risteard O’Domhnaill’s Atlantic, offering an alarming yet picturesque look at the impact of fish and oil consumption; the poetic portrait of the determined Irish Republican who became a leading figure of the 1980s hunger strike, in Brendan J. Byrne’s Bobby Sands: 66 Days; the charming In Loco Parentis from Neasa Ní Chianáin and David Rane, taking a look at the colourful and caring world of Ireland’s last remaining boarding school for primary students; It’s Not Yet Dark from first-time feature director Frankie Fenton, an awe-inspiring look at fellow filmmaker Simon Fitzmaurice’s stamina as he continues to direct with MND; Colm Quinn’s Mattress Men following eccentric persona ‘Mattress Mick’ who has reinvented himself in an attempt to save his business.