Opening Film Announced for FFF 2024

Festival Premiere of Ransom '79
Screening Wednesday 22nd May at 8pm
Followed by a Q&A with Director Colm Quinn, Producer John Kelleher, Associate Producers Claire Bird and Colin Murphy, moderated by Niamh Fagan Project Manager with Screen Ireland.

Ransom '79, follows iconic Irish reporter Charlie Bird as he hunts down his last story - while struggling with motor neurone disease.

In 2021, Bird got another in a long line of “scoops” - the Garda file of a secret operation to foil a ransom threat from 1979, where a criminal gang threatened to destroy the Irish economy by releasing foot and mouth disease into the national herd, unless paid £5 million. But even as Bird started to investigate, he noticed the first symptoms of what would turn out to be a fatal diagnosis.

Determined to keep following the story, Bird recruits journalist & writer Colin Murphy to help. Together, they criss-cross the country, chasing down leads, interviewing former guards and politicians, and attempting to find the gang - even as Charlie’s condition deteriorates.

An investigation into a bizarre crime, a revisiting of a troubled time in Irish history, a celebration of journalistic integrity and a portrait of human resilience, Ransom '79 is fundamentally a story of someone confronting his mortality. Through this race against time, Charlie not only seeks to unravel a historic mystery but also to cement his final legacy. Sadly he is not here to see it being screened at its first film festival. Ransom '79 will be released in cinemas on May 24th.

Watch the trailer here now:

Colm Quinn is a director of film and television based in Dublin. His first feature Mattress Men won the George Morrison Award for Best Feature Documentary at the Irish Film and Television Awards. Following this he co-directed the series Murder at the Cottage: The Search for Justice for Sophie with six time Oscar nominee Jim Sheridan for Sky. In the past three years he has directed two feature length documentaries for John Kelleher Media - Charlie Bird: Loud and Clear (RTE) and Ransom '79 (Screen Ireland, Coimisiún Na Meán and Virgin Media). Previous films have premiered at SXSW, Berlinale, Hot Docs and Sheffield DocFest.

More exciting news to follow shortly!