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Ireland to Hollywood: Here We Come

once.jpgIn an interesting set of three articles over at Variety, a fairly strong case is made for the impending Irish film invasion. From the education student filmmakers are getting, the funding quickly becoming available to the movies currently in the pipeline, all the evidence would suggest that Hollywood's got a real threat in Dublin.

The first article looks at how Irish film schools have evolved in their film programs. Back in the day, there weren't even film classes, let alone colleges. Now, there are

more than 50 institutions that provide everything from purely academic film studies courses at universities such as Trinity College to more hands-on film crafts courses at colleges such as the Galway Mayo Institute of Technology.
Irish academics laud their programs as just as good as American ones, and with a cost of roughly $7,800 a year, it's not such a bad deal, either.

Ireland's headlines are in no small part due to one Palme d'Or last May and one bright spot from Sundance last month. The Wind That Shakes the Barley (opening in limited release March 16) and Once (a musical romp picked up in Park City, pictured) have reminded the Industry what can come from the Emerald Isle. Simon Perry took the reigns at the Irish Film Board last year, and since then the influx of quality films (and the money to make them) has taken off. Variety looks at where the money's being spent, and Perry talks about his take on how to get these films made:

One thing I set out to do was to revive a feeling of confidence among the filmmakers here...The board had become remote, too formal. Rather than telling producers it was unlikely they would comply with the rather high hurdles to get money, it's more useful to say we're basically behind what you want to do; let's talk about how it could be done better.

So, if the money's flowing and the scripts are good, what movies are really getting made? The answer is plenty, if this list is any indication. From the gory, internationally-targeted Shrooms (American teens get more than they bargained for) to the heartwarming How About You? (a young woman's stuck caring for old folks over Christmas), the slate of films coming Hollywood's way might just have more of an impact than the two already making rounds.

At the very least, expect an influx of brogues on the big screen.

Posted by on February 16, 2007 4:18 PM
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