We are an independent festival dedicated to bringing together established and first-time filmmakers in a forum to celebrate the short film. The element of competition is not paramount and while the prizes are significant, it’s the taking part and screening of entrants’ films in a public arena that counts. Our commitment therefore, is to screen as many of the short films entered into our competition as is possible, by streaming them on our own intranet network to venues all over the village of Schull. There are wifi hotspots too, so the films can be viewed on smart devices and laptops, but only in the village of Schull, 24 hours a day 365 days of the year.
We show the competition films in the village hall, pubs, restaurants, shops, galleries and on the sides of buildings. We ask the question “What is a cinema, anyway?” and look for answers in every corner of the village. These are exciting times for the viewing public…we try to reflect this at our festival.
Our commitment is to focus on the craft of filmmaking and to encourage an exchange of ideas, aspirations and expertise among established filmmakers, young filmmakers and those who may never have picked up a camera before.
Because we seek to encourage young filmmakers to pick up their cameras for the first time, what we look for is imaginative solutions to inevitable production budget limitations. In other words, if you don’t have enough money to hire the latest camera, lighting and sound recording equipment, let alone the best actors in the country, then don’t write a script that depends on these factors. As simple as it may sound, a good film always starts with a good script. A good script is one that both takes account of the limitations of the budget and seeks to rise above these limitations imaginatively.
We would like to encourage film lovers to attend our festival and take part in each year’s extraordinary workshops and audiences with our guest film experts. Over the past few years we have had contributions from Jim Sheridan, Gerard Stembridge, Jack Gold, Kirsten Sheridan, Steve Coogan, Greg Dyke, Tony Barry, Lenny Abrahamson, Carmel Winters, Ken Wardrop, Andrew Freedman, Ian Power, David Puttnam, Sandy Lieberson, Mike Leigh, Maureen Hughes, Ros Hubbard, Stephen Frears, Saoirse Ronan, Moe Dunford and among many others.
Please check previous year’s programmes, available as downloadable PDFs elsewhere on this website.
Annually over the last weekend in May, in up to 20 different venues around the village of Schull, we run Q&As, world class workshops, screen international short film programmes, alongside the screening of our competition entries. We provide family entertainment at The Capitol to make sure all ages are well taken care of.