Stephen Frears, unanimously regarded as one of Britain’s finest directors, will screen his 2 most recent feature films in Schull during the 2017 Fastnet Film Festival, The Program and Florence Foster Jenkins followed by a Q&A with Greg Dyke.

The Fastnet Film Festival which will take place in Schull from Wednesday the 24th to the Sunday the 28th of May 2017, is a major showcase for Irish and International short film production. It focuses on the craft of film and has been held in high regard on a local, national and international level for several years.  The festival will run a series of Seminars, Masterclasses and Workshops covering, Lighting, Screenwriting, Casting, Auditioning, Score Composing, Film Ethics, Filming Conflict, Animation, Creating Content on Your Mobile, Set Design, Short to Feature, Costume and more. Also, featured at the festival will be in excess of 400 screenings, Local Interest Films and World Cinema Programmes.

Other guests taking part include David Puttnam, Juanita Wilson, Jim Sheridan, Joan Bergin, Lenny Abrahamson, Joan Bergin, Kevin Brownlow, and Carl Davis. The line up this year is unprecedented with over 70 expert guests taking part.

Frears made his name in TV drama for the first 15 years of his career, before turning to cinema, shooting The Hit starring Terence Stamp, John Hurt and Tim Roth, then My Beautiful Laundrette for Channel 4, which crossed over to the big-screen. After directing Sammy and Rosie Get Laid, and Prick up Your Ears, he moved to Hollywood with Dangerous Liaisons and The Grifters. Returning closer to home, he directed The Snapper, The Van, Dirty Pretty Things and Mrs Henderson Presents. He was nominated for a second Oscar with The Queen in 2006, before Philomena earned 4 Oscar nominations. He is currently in post-production on Victoria and Abdul.

The Program – Friday 26th 20.00 – 22.00 Palace Cinema

The true story of the meteoric rise and fall of one of the most controversial men, Lance Armstrong. Following a gruelling battle with cancer, Lance returned to cycling in 1999. Team director Johan Bruyneel developed the most sophisticated doping program in the history of the sport, allowing Lance and his teammates win The Tour an unprecedented seven times. Sunday Times journalist, David Walsh cost The Sunday Times, hundreds of thousands of euro in legal bills, eventually uncovering the truth. Featuring a stellar cast Ben Foster, Chris O’Dowd, Guillaume Canet and Jesse Plemons, The Program is thriller full of suspense. €5

Florence Foster Jenkins – Sunday 28th 15.00 – 17.00 Palace Cinema

Starring Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant the film tells the improbable story of, a real-life New York socialite, who pronounced herself a coloratura soprano despite a distinct lack of talent. An affectionate portrait of the elderly heiress, her aspirations and her illusions as singer and lover. Money goes a long way toward bolstering any delusion and in 1944 Jenkins bought her way to Carnegie Hall, performing an awful concert that became the stuff of legend.   Hugh Grant plays her romantic partner and enabler, St. Clair Bayfield, who pays off critics, making sure her recitals are packed with only sympathetic ears and tucks her into bed at night before running off to his mistress (Rebecca Ferguson). €5

For further festival information please check out www.fastnetfilmfestival.com.

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