Congratulations to the nominees and winners of the IFTA Awards hosted by the Irish Film & Television Academy last night on Virgin Media One at 10pm, with Deirdre O’Kane at the helm.
Sunday night’s Virtual IFTA Awards was the first of its kind on Irish TV - A Star-studded affair with high-profile international guest presenters virtually presenting filmmakers across the island of Ireland for their extraordinary work in filmmaking.
Ordinary Love won Best Film 2020, which was awarded by legendary Hollywood director Martin Scorsese, along with Black ‘47, which he presented with the award for Best Film 2019.
Hollywood Director, Martin Scorsese, told the audience, “Little did we know what strange times lay ahead that we are witnessing now, and it appears to me that we are all having to reinvent cinema now, and that’s a good thing, it is. Because now, more than ever, we need the moving image. We need vision, creativity and storytelling that takes us on a journey and opens us, enlightens us, opens our hearts and our minds, and there's something about Ireland and Irish storytelling that is universal that connects with everyone in the world. John Ford knew that, and I know that”.
Tom Vaughan-Lawlor won Best Actor in Film and accepted the award from his living room couch with his wife and children. He gave a moving speech (punctuated by some lovely cameos from his son’s feet and his daughters’ typing skills)“ thank you to IFTA for all the work they've done for the industry during the Lockdown. I'm very proud to be a member.
We all know how special Mr O’Halloran is, and him entrusting this part with me was a huge honour and… My daughter is hitting the keys sorry….I want to thank you for giving me one of the best gifts I've ever received as an actor.”
Andrew Scott who won Best Actor in a Drama for his role in Black Mirror: Smithereens joined live from the “hell that is Dubrovnik” (tongue firmly in cheek, as he was on a scenic beach.)
“Oh, WOW thank you so much, everybody, that's incredible. Hello, Ireland. I miss you an incredible amount. I feel bereft for not having been home for such a long time. This really makes me feel connected.”
He went on to make an impassioned plea for the Irish Arts saying “let's keep the arts going in whatever way we can and try and support it whenever we feel it's safe enough to do so. Because the arts are the most wonderful thing about our lives. And I'm so proud to be an Irish artist. So thank you and have a great night, people, wherever you are.”
Aisling Franciosi won the Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland Rising Star Award for her standout performance in The Nightingale. Speaking about this award she said, “this is actually a huge surprise and I'm honoured to be next to Niamh, Lee, Andy and Ryan. I'm always really proud of the work and the talent coming out of Ireland, and to get this award from home is really, really lovely”.
Kerry native Jessie Buckey won two awards on the night - Best Actress Film, for her work in Wild Rose, and Best Supporting Actress Drama for Chernobyl
“Thank you so much, this is completely unexpected. I literally have just come in the front door, jumped in the shower and threw a dress on myself…this is all so overwhelming. Thank you, this is an honour. Fiona Shaw! What the hell! You were my idol in RADA, you amazing, amazing woman.”
She also took time to thank Adi Roche for her tireless work with the children of Chernobyl.
“Adi Roche is one of the most generous, incredible women I have been lucky enough to have crossed my path. And the work she has done with the children of Chernobyl, and continues to do... she is still fighting the same fight as she did when it happened.”
Pierce Brosnan announced Niamh Algar as the winner of Best Supporting Actress in a Film for Calm with Horses and praised the increased representation of women on screen: “I got into acting because I wanted to bring representation to women on screen. And every female actress here tonight is doing that. And it makes me incredibly proud to be an Irish actress so thank you very much IFTA”.
Liam Neeson shared a special message to the Irish Screen industries saying “I'm thinking of you all back home right now and I know we are going through hard times, cruel times. Many industries have been hurt, especially the film industry, but we will get through it; we must get through it. As a famous politician once said, ‘when you're going through hell, keep going’. To all our film-makers, young actors and actresses try and stay strong, stay creative. The work will come back again, and tonight we are going to celebrate how cool and how great a film industry we have in Ireland"
Caitriona Balfe star of Outlander said , “I know we all miss the chance of being together on a night like this when the Irish academy acknowledges and celebrates truly spectacular work that Irish filmmakers are achieving front and behind the camera.
Daisy Edgar-Jones & Paul Mescal of Normal People fame presented the awards for Best Short FIlm and Best Animated Short. The on-screen couple, who captured and broke the hearts of audiences around the world, pointed to the strength of Ireland’s Short Filmmakers with Edgar-Jones noting that Ireland has an incredible record with Short films with many IFTA nominees having gone on to Oscar Glory in the past.
Mescal announced Welcome to a Bright White Limbo as this year’s winner. The award for Best Animated Short went to The Dream Report.
Pierce Brosnan said on the night, “I am truly honored to be part of this filmmaking community of storytellers and people who I so greatly admire”.
There was also a world premiere as part of the ceremony with the video for The Blizzards’ new single One Good Thing making its debut.
IFTA CEO Áine Moriarty said: “I know we were charting new and unprecedented territory with this Virtual IFTA Ceremony, but we have been overwhelmed with the positive response and engagement from the entire industry who have embraced our concept. (In these challenging times,) It’s important that we try to keep positive and to make the best of the circumstances that we all find ourselves in. That is why the Academy has been determined to showcase, acknowledge and reward the excellent craft and production being achieved by Ireland’s talented filmmaking community, who are delivering world-class standards”.
Bill Malone, Director of Content at Virgin Media Television said, “I am delighted that the Irish Film and Television Awards has been able to shine a light and highlight such rich Irish talent. It feels like a real golden age for Irish Film and TV Drama right now and as a nation we can be justly proud of the impact of this sector worldwide. The calibre of production on show at this year’s awards was exceptional and I would like to congratulate all the nominees.
"Virgin Media Television are passionate about supporting and championing Irish creative talent and today, more than ever, they need all our support."
The IFTA Awards is funded by Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland, and also supported by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) and Virgin Media Television.
The full list of winners is below.
Winners of the IFTA Film & Drama Awards 2020
BEST FILM 2020 BEST FILM 2019
Ordinary Love Black ‘47
Paddy Breathnach - Rosie
Mark O’Halloran - Rialto
ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE - FILM
Tom Vaughan-Lawlor - Rialto
ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE - FILM
Jessie Buckley - Wild Rose
ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE - FILM
David Wilmot - Ordinary Love
ACTRESS SUPPORTING ROLE - FILM
Niamh Algar - Calm with Horses
GEORGE MORRISON FEATURE DOCUMENTARY
The Lonely Battle of Thomas Reid
IRISH FILM BOARD RISING STAR
SHORT FILM – LIVE ACTION
Welcome to a Bright White Limbo
ANIMATED SHORT FILM
The Dream Report
DIRECTOR – DRAMA
Dearbhla Walsh - The Handmaid’s Tale
SCRIPTWRITER – DRAMA
Mark O’Rowe - Temple
ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE - DRAMA
Andrew Scott - Black Mirror: Smithereens
ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE - DRAMA
Niamh Algar - The Virtues
ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE - DRAMA
Mark O’Halloran - The Virtues
ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE - DRAMA
Jessie Buckley - Chernobyl
Piers McGrail - Never Grow Old
Eimer Ni Mhaoldomhnaigh - The Rhythm Section
Mick Mahon - Gaza
MAKEUP & HAIR
Liz Byrne & Linda Gannon - Black ‘47
Kíla - Arracht
John Leslie - Never Grow Old
Brendan Rehill, Alan Scully & Peter Blayney - Arracht
Ed Bruce & Nicholas Murphy - We Have Always Lived in the Castle
For all press enquiries please contact: Julianne Galvin at Kennedy PR + Brand firstname.lastname@example.org/ 086 065 8086.
Interview requests with nominees (which will be facilitated where possible).