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Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards 2023

Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland, Fresh International Film Festival and RTÉ are delighted to announce the 34 films and makers shortlisted for the 2023 IYFTYs – Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards. For the first time ever, audiences will have the opportunity to preview all the shortlisted IYFTYs on the Fresh International Film Festival YouTube Channel from Monday March 27.

The filmmaking work of young people aged 7 to 18 years from Ireland and across the world will be celebrated at Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards 2023, which will be broadcast on RTÉ2 on Wednesday 12th April from 7pm to 8pm. The awards will also be available to view on the RTÉ Player. The IYFTYs will be hosted by radio and television presenter Stephen Byrne and BBC Radio presenter Gemma Bradley, recorded live from Odeon Cinemas, Limerick.

Speaking about Fresh International Film Festival and Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards, Minister Catherine Martin said, “Ireland’s film, television, digital and creative industries are globally renowned. Our strength is our people, a strong and vibrant creative workforce that equally values those who work behind the scenes and those who step into the limelight. I am delighted to see the next generation of Ireland’s filmmaking talent present their work through Fresh International Film Festival and Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards. Film and television are exciting, rewarding, and sustainable career choices for young people, and Fresh International Film Festival is a wonderful first introduction to filmmaking. I congratulate all the young filmmakers, their casts, and crews, along with their teachers, parents, and supporters, for such an extraordinary and beautiful array of short films, made for young people by young people. I would encourage all to explore film and television studies and apprenticeships as an excellent career path.”

Now in its 27th year, Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards, part of the Fresh International Film Festival, are globally regarded as one of the world’s leading annual film events for young people. Previous award winners and participants include Oscar-nominated director Vincent Lambe (Detainment), All-American High School Film Festival, New York ‘Best Director’ Seán Treacy, acclaimed Irish filmmaker Dónal Foreman, BBC presenter and author Nick Sheridan, IFTA nominated director Conor McMahon (Let The Wrong One In), comedian and TV personality Justine Stafford and countless more. 

At the launch, Suzanne Kelly, Head of Children’s and Young People’s Content at RTÉ, said, “RTÉ are delighted to support Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards 2023, one of the world’s most prestigious Awards for young people, depicting stories of children and young people globally, told in their own words. Fresh is an extraordinary organisation that provides an incredibly important support network and steppingstone for young creators both domestically and internationally and RTÉ are delighted to celebrate the amazing talent evident this year and the ongoing work Fresh do. I wish all the shortlisted nominees the very best of luck.’’

This year, Fresh International Film Festival, generously supported by the Arts Council, welcomed more than a thousand short film submissions by young filmmakers, a fascinating, diverse, and inclusive celebration of the stories of children and young people across the world, made by young people, for young people, told in their own voices. The work presents an insight into individual lives, community stories, unique cultural identities, and the collective experiences of global youth from Ireland to Austria, Spain to Senegal, Peru to Palestine, Ukraine to Korea, Brazil to the USA. The 34 shortlisted films can be viewed from Monday, 27th March on the Fresh International Film Festival YouTube Channel.

Maureen Kennelly, Director of the Arts Council, noted at the launch, “the Arts Council is delighted to support this fantastic initiative and I would like to congratulate all of the shortlisted filmmakers from around the world. I’m especially excited to see so many young filmmakers from across Ireland recognised in this year’s shortlist. Irish film has been making major waves on the world stage, and it’s very heartening to see a new generation of film artists coming through to carry on the torch, creating bold, inventive work and offering diverse perspectives.”

Fresh International Film Festival, and the IYFTY’s, encourage young people to explore filmmaking as a career, learning the art of visual storytelling, understanding the filmmaking process from first draft to final frame, and the sustainable career opportunities that exist both in front of and behind the camera, inspiring and building Ireland’s future film, television, and digital talent-pool. The IYFTYs shortlist is a rich collection that showcases the imagination, creativity and skills of the world’s future storytellers, and interest in the festival from 82 countries reflects Ireland’s ascendancy as a global hub for film, television, digital and creative industries.

Louise Ryan, Head of Marketing and Communications at Screen Ireland said at the launch, “Screen Ireland is very proud to support Ireland’s Young Filmmaker of the Year Awards which present a fantastic introduction to the next generation of talented and passionate Irish filmmakers. Screen Ireland’s ambition is to discover and support new and original voices across the country. We hope our support for the Fresh International Film Festival will help to inspire young people everywhere to explore future careers in the creative screen industries. Our congratulations to the young filmmakers shortlisted – and we can’t wait to see more of your work in the future.”

Source: Screen Ireland

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