It can be difficult to make your first feature. It can be next to impossible to do so if you’re suffering from a physical impairment. That Simon Fitzmaurice managed to make a feature film, and then have it turn out to be as good as My Name is Emily, is nothing short of a miracle. With his own debut, It’s Not Yet Dark, Frankie Fenton captures the extraordinary achievement of this feat of filmmaking.
It’s Not Yet Dark is the story Simon Fitzmaurice, a talented Irish filmmaker who is living with motor neurone disease. He was diagnosed at the age of 34, after his short film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. His wife was expecting their third child and they were left shocked and reeling.
Simon refused to give up and started to work on the script for a feature film, My Name is Emily. Now, five years later, the father of five children, he is completely physically incapacitated. The film is narrated by Colin Farrell, using extracts from Simon’s best-selling memoir. It sees the audience follow Simon as he embarks on the direction of his first feature film through the use of the last physical attribute he has control over – his eyes.
Commenting on the selection producer Kathryn Kennedy and Lesley McKimm said:
After a great premiere with My Name Is Emily in Galway last year we are delighted to bring Frankie Fenton’s debut feature documentary to the Film Fleadh which shines a light on the extraordinary Simon Fitzmaurice. The film has taken 3 years to complete and the result is a very poetic and uplifting piece, with extracts from Simon’s best selling book of the same name. We are really excited to screen the film at the Fleadh, which is so consistently supportive of Irish cinema.
It’s Not Yet Dark is produced by Kathryn Kennedy for Kennedy Films and Lesley McKimm of Newgrange Pictures, it was captured by Fenton and cinematographer Kate McCullough, with Dermot Diskin editing at Windmill Lane is world renowned for its recording studio, music video production & commercials, VFX work and audio for Film, TV and Animation., and support from the Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland (FÉ/SI) is the national development agency for Irish filmmaking and the Irish film, television and animation industry..
It’s Not Yet Dark plays Town Hall Theatre on Saturday, July 9th at 4pm. Tickets are on-sale now.