The Audi Dublin International Film Festival has announced its prestigious Closing Night Gala, the Irish premiere of Handsome Devil, John Butler’s (The Stag) new comedy-drama set in an Irish boarding school. Tickets are now on sale for this exclusive event happening on 26th February at 8pm in the Savoy Cinema. John Butler and members of the cast will be in attendance at the screening. Real-life experience of boarding school is also expertly explored by director Neasa Ní Chianáin in the acclaimed documentary In Loco Parentis, which has its Irish premiere at the festival on 20th February at 8.15pm at the Light House Cinema Smithfield.

Handsome Devil features leading Irish acting talent Andrew Scott (Spectre, The Stag, Sherlock) and Moe Dunford (Patrick’s Day, Vikings) alongside emerging talents Nicholas Galitzine and Fionn O’Shea. Produced by Rebecca O’Flanagan and Robert Walpole for Treasure Entertainment and a hit at the Toronto International Film Festival, Handsome Devil is set to extend Irish films’ spectacular run of major international attention and is one of the essential films for 2017.

Handsome Devil follows the story of the unlikely friendship of boarding school roommates Ned (Fionn O’Shea) and Conor (Nicholas Galitzine). Despite taking an instant dislike to each other they are encouraged by their English teacher Dan Sherry (Andrew Scott) to find their own voices and defy the status quo of their rugby-obsessed school. There are plenty of famous faces in the supporting cast with Ardal O’Hanlon and Amy Huberman making appearances and Huberman’s husband Brian O’Driscoll choreographing the top-notch, on-field action.

Director of Handsome Devil John Butler said:

It’s such a thrill for any film maker to show their film at their home town festival – even more so when it happens to be a festival of the quality of ADIFF, and more so again when it’s the closing film. I can’t wait!

Producers, Rebecca O’Flanagan and Robert Walpole of Treasure Entertainment said:

We have launched many of our favourite films at DIFF: The Stag, Viva and now Handsome Devil. We love the festival. Grainne and her great team always put together a fabulous programme and to be closing the festival again is a real honour for all of us at Treasure.

In Loco Parentis gives an inside look at Headfort School, Ireland’s last remaining primary boarding school. Focusing on several pupils who are either finding their place in school life or getting to move on to the next stage, the film is propelled by the extraordinary energy of the school’s longest serving teachers, husband and wife John and Amanda and their unflagging commitment to the children of the school.

The Irish premiere at the Audi Dublin International Film Festival is the perfect homecoming after In Loco Parentis’ great acclaim on the international festival circuit: it received its world premiere at the prestigious International Documentary Film Festival and has been selected as only one of 12 documentaries to screen in the World Cinema Documentary Competition at the Sundance Film Festival.

Neasa Ní Chianáin, director of In Loco Parentis said:

We are delighted that our film In Loco Parentis is having its Irish premiere at ADIFF because this is a festival that really connects Dublin audiences with filmmakers and creates a broad appreciation and awareness of Irish film that is unequalled elsewhere. Set in a truly unique Irish boarding school, In Loco Parentis uncorks some of the mystery of childhood through the lives of two extraordinary and committed teachers. The response internationally has been hugely positive and we hope it will connect equally as powerful with audiences at home.

The Dublin International Film Festival is sponsored by Audi, its principal funder is the Arts Council and it is also in receipt of funding from the Irish Film Board. Key partners and funders include hotel partner The Merrion Hotel, print transport partner Wells Cargo, post-production partner Windmill Lane, digital out-of-home provider Orbscreen, social listening partners Olytico, food ordering app Just Eat and media partners Entertainment.ie, 98FM, The Times & The Sunday Times.

Tickets for ADIFF Closing Night Gala Handsome Devil and In Loco Parentis are now on sale at 01 687 7974 and online at www.diff.ie.

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