Neil Jordan’s Breakfast on Pluto has topped the list of nominees for this year’s Irish Film and Television Awards.
The director’s film starring Cillian Murphy in a cross-dressing role has received a total of 10 nominations, followed closely by Brian Kirk’s Middletown with nine.
Ken Loach’s Palme d’Or winner The Wind That Shakes the Barley and John Boorman’s The Tiger’s Tail are in the running in seven out of 32 categories for the award ceremony which will take place in Dublin’s RDS on February 9.
Aine Moriarty, chief executive of the Irish Film and Television Academy (IFTA), said: “It has been another strong year for Irish talent with world-class Irish production across film and television. This is also the first year that the industry’s 800-strong Academy Membership has voted for and short-listed the nominees.
“The Academy Members now have the difficult task of selecting the IFTA winners in what will be a closely contested 4th Annual Irish Film and Television Awards.”
The shortlist sees Breakfast on Pluto, The Wind That Shakes the Barley and Middletown, compete alongside Niall Heery’s unreleased feature Small Engine Repair and David Gleeson’s The Front Line in the Best Film category.
Cork actor Murphy, who shot to fame in 28 Days Later and is also in the running for a prestigious Bafta film award, has received multiple nominations in the Best Actor category for his performances in Breakfast on Pluto and The Wind That Shakes the Barley.
He is vying with Colin Farrell for his performance in Hollywood blockbuster Miami Vice, Pierce Brosnan in the Matador and Brendan Gleeson in Studs.
Actor Liam Cunningham is in the running for three acting awards including Ken Loach’s film, television programme Showbands and Murphy’s Law. Up and coming actors, Ruth Negga, Ruth Bradley and Padraic Delaney, who has been named as the Irish Shooting Star for 2007 for next month’s International Berlin Film Festival, have each featured in two categories.
Irish cinematographer Seamus McGarvey has been chosen for World Trade Centre, and costume designers Joan Bergin and Consolata Boyle are named for their work on The Prestige and The Queen respectively.
The Best International Film shortlist includes; Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s Babel, Martin Scorsese’s The Departed, Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris’ Little Miss Sunshine, Paul Greengrass’s United 93 and Martin Campbell’s Casino Royale.
The shortlist for television hits includes Irish dramas such as Fallout, Hide and Seek, Stardust and Legend selected for Best Single Drama.
Those nominated in the Best Drama Series/Soap list include The Clinic, Ros na Run, Murphy’s Law and Showbands.
Consumer champion Eddie Hobbs, who has already won an IFTA award, has made the shortlist again, with another programme Rip Off Republic.
Comedy favourites are also battling it out as the Best Entertainment award sees Jokerman – Tommy Tiernan Takes on America, The Panel, Naked Camera and The Podge and Rodge Show compete.
Hollywood starlet Mischa Barton brought a touch of Californian glamour to the last celebration of the Irish film industry in November 2005 at which some of the biggest names in the business were honoured.
The event in the RDS was attended by award veterans Sinead Cusack, Oscar-winning actress Vanessa Redgrave, Andrea Corr, Eva Birthistle, Renee Weldon, Grainne Seoige, former Miss World Rosanna Davison and Caprice.