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Two IFB funded titles ‘What Richard Did’ and ‘Jump’ Announced for Toronto International Film Festival

14th Aug 2012
Four films funded by Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB) are set to screen at the A-list Toronto International Film Festival next month with the announcement today that Lenny Abrahamson's WHAT RICHARD DID and Kieron J. Walsh's JUMP have been added to the Irish line-up.  They will now join Neil Jordan's BYZANTIUM starring Saoirse Ronan and Gemma Arterton and the Irish documentary MEN AT LUNCH directed by Sean O'Cualáin as official selections for the film festival.

The award-winning Lenny Abrahamson's (Adam & Paul, Garage) eagerly awaited feature WHAT RICHARD DID will have its world premiere at the festival which takes place next month, while JUMP directed by Kieron J Walsh (When Brendan Met Trudy, The Savage Eye) will have its international premiere.

The Toronto International Film Festival is one of the most important film festivals in the world and has become a launching pad for the best in international and Hollywood cinema into the North American market. The illustrious festival which was founded in 1976 is also the premier film festival in North America from which the Oscar race begins. 

Commenting on WHAT RICHARD DID's world premiere at the festival, the films producer Ed Guiney of Element Pictures said"We are incredibly proud of Lenny Abrahamson's new film WHAT RICHARD DID. I can't think of a better way to launch it internationally than at the Toronto International Film Festival where it will have its world premiere on the 9th of September.

Speaking about JUMP's selection, producer Brendan Byrne of Hotshot Films said:  "I'm absolutely thrilled JUMP has been selected for TIFF. It's a  great mark of confidence in the film from one of the world's top film festivals, and provides us with a great platform to attract the calibre of distribution that will ensure the  widest possible audience for JUMP.   I look forward to exploring the avenues such a prestigious festival slot might open up for the film.

With Kieron J. Walsh, Irish director of JUMP adding: "The Toronto Film Festival has to be the best possible festival for the film's international premiere and I can't wait to see it in front of a Toronto audience."

Commenting on the Irish line-up at the renowned festival, James Hickey, Chief Executive, Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB) said: "The Toronto International Film Festival is one of the industry's most prestigious and respected festivals. To have three feature films and a feature documentary selected is a testament to the quality and diversity of Irish filmmaking today. We're delighted that Irish film and Irish filmmaking talent continues to gain recognition on the international stage."

WHAT RICHARD DID follows a group of gilded Dublin teenagers over the course of the summer following their Leaving Certificate exams, in particular, Richard, a young sports star with great prospects who finds his life irreparably changed in the wake of a senseless act of violence.

Written by Malcolm Campbell who worked on the popular UK TV series Skins and Shameless, it stars young acting talent Jack Reynor, Roisin Murphy and Sam Keeley (The Other Side of Sleep) along with established actors Lars Mikkelsen (The Killing, Headhunter), Padraic Delaney (Raw, The Wind That Shakes The Barley) and Lorraine Pilkington (Rough Diamond, Human Traffic). 

The UK/Irish co-production JUMP is a modern urban fairytale set in Derry which follows the lives of four twenty-something's whose lives collide one fateful New Year's Eve in a night of fast talk, accidents and intrigue.  The film which was written by Kieron J. Walsh and Steve Brookes is based on a stage play of the same name by Lisa McGee.

The talented cast includes Nichola Burley (Wuthering Heights, Street Dance 3D), Martin McCann (Killing Bono, Shadow Dancer), Valene Kane (At The End of the Day), Richard Dormer (Good Vibrations) and Charlene McKenna (Raw).  It previously screened at the Belfast Film Festival and Galway Film Fleadh earlier this year.

What Richard Did, Jump, Byzantium and Men at Lunch will screen at the Toronto International Film Festival which will take place September 6th - 16th.

WHAT RICHARD DID was produced by Ed Guiney for Element Pictures with Andrew Lowe executive producing and was funded by Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB) and Screen Scene.  Element Pictures credits include The Guard, Garage, Shadow Dancer and This Must Be The Place.

Lenny Abrahamson previously directed the critically acclaimed and award-winning features Garage which starred Pat Shortt and Adam & Paul.

WHAT RICHARD DID will be released in Irish cinemas in October 2012.

More About JUMP
The project is an official UK/Irish co-production and was produced by Brendan J Byrne for Hotshot Films together with Katie Holly of Blinder Films.  It was funded by Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board, Northern Ireland Screen, BBC and Limelight.

JUMP follows the lives of four twenty-something's whose lives collide one fateful New Year's Eve. Crime boss daughter Greta is rescued from suicide by drifter Pearse who's on a mission to avenge his brother's mysterious death. Johnny, a small time crook and Marie, a frustrated shop assistant shop assistant are both looking for a fresh start.  As the clock ticks down to midnight and the night's events fall into place, JUMP weaves an existential portrait of our character's lives as their hopes, fears and secrets are revealed.

This will be the third trip for director Kieron J Walsh to the Toronto International Film Festival where he attended once as a producer with Sensation in 2010 and twice as director with When Brendan Met Trudy and the Beckett on Film project in 2001 and now with Jump in 2012.

More about BYZANTIUM
Neil Jordan's latest feature film BYZANTIUM stars Saoirse Ronan (Atonement, The Lovely Bones) and Gemma Arterton (St. Trinian's) as Eleanor and Clara, two mysterious and penniless young women who flee the scene of a violent crime and arrive in a run-down coastal resort. They try to find money and refuge along the tawdry seafront and in the dilapidated hotels.

Clara, ever-practical, sells her body. She soon meets shy and lonely Noel, who provides a roof over their heads in his seedy guesthouse, Byzantium. Clara, always looking towards the future, turns it into a ‘pop-up' brothel. Meanwhile Eleanor, the eternal schoolgirl, meets Frank, a kindred spirit who unwittingly prompts her to tell the truth about her life. She tells him that Clara is her mother; yet Clara is only a few years older. She says that she was born in 1804; yet she is just sixteen. She confesses that she must drink human blood to stay alive - and so must her mother. In the small, quiet town, people start to die.

And the past that the girls have been running from for so long, finally catches up with them - with astonishing consequences.

Dublin's Parallel Films co-produced with Number9 Films in the UK with funding from Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Bord (IFB), Demarest Films, StudioCanal and Lipsync.

More about MEN AT LUNCH
Sean O'Cualáin's documentary MEN AT LUNCH (LÓN SA SPÉIR) features the narrative talents of Fionnula Flanagan and tells the story behind the famous photograph Lunch Atop a Skyscraper which depicts 11 construction workers eating their lunch while balancing on a beam of a skyscraper on the 69th floor, 850ft above Manhattan. The image, taken in 1932 during construction of the Rockerfeller Centre, is said to feature two emigrants from Shanaglish, near Gort, Co Galway. 

The film was produced by Éamonn Ó Cualáin for Sónta with finance from Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board, BAI and TG4.
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