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Ennis set to host ‘Fantastic’ film festival at the end of October – The Clare Champion

IN a first for Ireland, Ennis is to host a brand new festival this month celebrating the ‘Fantastic’ genre of film including horror, fantasy and Sci-Fi.

Just in time for Hallowe’en the Ennis International Fantastic Film Festival (EIFF) will take place on the weekend of October 28 to 30 with host of events planned and high profile special guests from the world of Fantastic film making.

Amongst the star names attached to the launch festival are Ennis natives and film industry luminaries, actress Simone Kirby, who stars in the upcoming third and final season of HBO/BBC adaptation of Philip Pullman’s fantasy novel ‘His Dark Materials’, and award-winning screenwriter/actor Mark O’Halloran – both of whom are jurors on EIFF’s inaugural awards panel.

The ‘Fantastic’ genre has seen a huge rise in popularity in the dynamic Film Festival scene in north America over the past decade, a trend now being echoed across Europe.

Ennis is proud to be the first location in Ireland to a host a dedicated ‘fantastic’ film festival. Planning has been underway since early this year when the idea was first floated publicly in the Clare Champion.

Mayor of Ennis, Councillor Clare Colleran Molloy has personally championed this festival.

She said, “This is an exciting initiative for Ennis. It’s a terrific concept to focus on a niche genre, yet by choosing ‘fantastic’ which embraces fantasy and Sci-Fi as well as horror, there is enough scope to engage interest from a broad range of filmmakers, film goers and industry professionals.

“I am particularly pleased to see a three-year plan in place mapping steady growth and I’m delighted to see the calibre of support EIFF has attracted in year one with key educators TUS and Limerick Clare ETB on board as partners, together with Creative Ireland, Ennis Chamber and Clare County Council. We can be confident that EIFF has a future.”

The inaugural EIFF will present a selected screening programme of short and feature films (both Irish and international) – drawn from EIFF’s successful call for submissions on Film Freeway platform.

EIFF had 85 high quality submissions, from which the festival programmers have chosen four sets of shorts and one premiere feature, totaling 20+ screenings.

On opening night there will the premiere at glόr of ‘York Witch’s Society’, introduced by the film’s director Liza Bolton.

The festival will also feature conversation events/ panel discussions with leading industry professionals; international calibre workshops delivered by experienced industry professionals; networking opportunities for film makers and audience and a series of retro films screened at The Arc Cinema Ennis suitable for all ages and tastes from family audience viewing through to horror.

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