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FilmOffaly 2014 Winners Announced


FilmOffaly in partnership with Filmbase are proud to announce the winners of its annual bursary award for the sixth year running. FilmOffaly now boasts a lineage of successfully funded short films since 2008 and this year’s winners will undoubtedly be joining those ranks.   


Two short films have been chosen as joint winners this year and in an opportunity unique to this year only, as funding is generally only for a single film.


The emerging winners are Helen Flanagan for her script ‘The Debt’ and Gavin Keane for his script ‘Strangers in the Night’. Both films came through a rigorous shortlisting and interview process following 121 scripts submitted for the award.


‘The Debt’ is a heart warming story about childhood friendship. When 10 year old Daithí falls for his beautiful and unattainable classmate Jessica, the task falls to his best friend Penny, a rough and tumble tomboy to help him win her heart. At its core The Debt is a story about growing up and learning the true value of friendship. Daithí learns to value his friend Penny, and truly appreciate his friendship with her. Similarly Penny learns that having a best friend means that you can trust them and rely on them to be there for you, even when others aren’t.


‘Strangers in the night’ is comedy horror packed full of spookiness and laughs. It’s about two lonely people who find the love that they were searching for. Well, one lonely person and one banshee! The Fitzgerald family have been cursed for centuries to hear the banshee’s terrible wail whenever a member of their clan is about to die. Granny Fitzgerald is the latest to hear the dreaded scream of the creature, but when the banshee and her grandson Damien catch each other’s eye, something unexpected happens that will change the lives of the Fitzgerald family forever.



The Production Company responsible for “The Debt” is Fail Safe Films, with Helen Flanagan (Writer/Director), Simon Doyle (Producer) Deirdre O Toole (Director of Photography) and David Byrne (Editor).

The Production Company behind ‘‘Strangers in the night” is Fantastic Films, the team consisting of Gavin Keane (Writer), Conor McMahon (Director) and Deirdre Levins (Producer)

Production is well underway for both shorts this autumn, so look out for both titles on the festival circuit next year.

Chairperson of FilmOffaly, Peter Ormond said, “We are delighted with the response and the outcome of the sixth year of the FilmOffaly award. All shortlisted scripts were of a very high standard this year and we look forward to working with the production teams throughout the year, to ensure that yet another production company has a good experience of working in Offaly.”

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