FilmOffaly 5 a success!
FilmOffaly took over Filmbase in Dublin last Thursday as they held FilmOffaly5, the fifth birthday celebration of the film commission and launch of the Discount Vendor Scheme.
Friends of FilmOffaly old and new came together to celebrate the success FilmOffaly has enjoyed since 2008 as one of the most proactive regional film commissions in Ireland. The discount Vendor Card is the first of its kind in Ireland, and helps to make Offaly one of the most attractive regions in Ireland to film.
The crowd gathered to hear speeches from FilmOffaly Chairperson Nichola Hogan, Offaly Arts Officer Sinead O’Reilly and Irish Film Commissioner Naoise Barry.
Speaking about the work of FilmOffaly, Barry said: “Offaly is well tooled up and leading the way for providing the perfect landscape for a film production to work in, this vendor card scheme demonstrates how committed they are to it, and I have no doubt it will be replicated across the country, which makes my job, selling Ireland as a location for film, much easier.”
This was then followed by a Q&A with the actor Antonia Campbell-Hughes, who had flown over from London to come and discuss her experience of working in Offaly during the 2011 film The Other Side Of Sleep.
Interviewed by Gary Hoctor, Antonia discussed the unique character of Offaly and how she used it to become the character of Arlene, emersing herself in the region for three months, spending time with locals to perfect her Offaly accent. Shy and intelligent Antonia talked about how carefully she plans her roles and thinks through every aspect of the character so as to fully embody the person and it is clear that Offaly itself was essential to that development, saying “as an actor it was unique to work in Offaly, there is a spirit maybe even a spirituality about the place, the locations had a stillness which was perfect for the film and it made the whole experience very spatial”.
Antonia also discussed her career more generally, talking about the tranisition from comedy, having appeared in series’ by Jennifer Saunder and a lead role in the BBC series Lead Balloon, to making darker dramas such as The Other Side Of Sleep and more recently 3096 in which she played Natascha Kampusch, an Austrian girl who was kidnapped and held captive for eight years. The audience listened on intently and were given their chance to put their own questions to Antonia at the end.
The event was a great success and with the Vendor Discount Card now launched, film crews will be able to make use of discounted rates at a wide range of businesses in Offaly, including restaurants, hotels, chauffering services and even an equestrian cenre.
If you would like to add your business to the Vendor Discount Scheme then go to the vendor card page of the FilmOffaly website - or call them on 057 9357 400.