Screen Ireland unveils its 2020 catalogue of projects

Screen Ireland unveils its 2020 catalogue of projects

The eagerly awaited TV adaptation of Sally Rooney’s Normal People, a documentary about much-loved rock star Phil Lynott and the story of how Ireland repealed the Eighth Amendment are among the big and small screen projects being backed by Screen Ireland due for release in the coming months.

They were among 40 film, TV and animation productions being funded by the national screen agency as it unveiled its annual catalogue of projects that have recently filmed here or are due to go into production shortly.

Screen Ireland also confirmed the long-rumoured news that production is underway on Foundation, an Apple TV drama, in Limerick’s Troy Studios. The series, employing 500 people, is the largest production ever to film on location in Ireland. The ten-episode series is adapted from Isaac Asimov’s sci-fi classic and will shoot in Troy for several months.

Among the speakers at Screen Ireland’s launch were director Lenny Abrahamson and producer Ed Guiney of Element Pictures, whose Normal People comes to TV screens this spring.

Producer Alan Maher introduced the first clip for Songs for While I’m Away, Emer Reynolds’ documentary on Phil Lynott which will come to the big screen this year. Featuring contributions from Lynott’s family, musical collaborators and those who knew him best, it tells his story through some of his most iconic songs.

Also coming to Irish screens is The 8th, which follows two key campaigners as they bid to gather momentum to overturn the Eighth Amendment.

Actors Niamh Algar, soon to star in Ridley Scott’s forthcoming sci-fi series Raised by Wolves and Clare Dunne, who co-wrote and stars in the forthcoming Herself, were also in attendance.

Dunne was just back in Ireland after a week at the Sundance Film festival, where Herself got a standing ovation and rave reviews from international film critics following its world premiere. There is strong early buzz for the film, about a young Irish mother who sets out to build her own home as she escapes domestic violence and abuse.

“It was one of the most beautiful moments to see the audience stand up, and that’s why I was so glad to have my family there with me,” Dunne told the Irish Examiner.

I met so many amazing people who were working on the front line with the issues of housing and homelessness, with women and men in abusive relationships. For me, standing in Sundance a few days ago and the film being released to the world was a huge moment, that they stood up and responded so well. I know the people along the way that imbued this story with great truth, even though it’s a work of fiction.

Other projects being supported by Screen Ireland include Wild Mountain Thyme, starring Emily Blunt and Jamie Dornan and filmed in the west of Ireland and My Salinger Year, an adaptation of the hit novel starring Sigourney Weaver. Animation projects being funded by the agency include Oops! Back in the Deep End and Cartoon Saloon’s forthcoming Wolf Walkers.

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