Aer Lingus has announced that it has become the official airline sponsor of the 2020 Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival, and sponsor of the Aer Lingus Discovery Award category.  The Aer Lingus Discovery Award identifies, supports and encourages new and emerging talent in the Irish film industry, both in front of and behind the camera.  

Thirteen exciting emerging talents have been nominated for this year’s Aer Lingus Discovery Award with the announcement of the winner taking place at a special event in Café En Seine, Dawson Street on the closing day of the festival on Sunday 8 March, 2020.

Aer Lingus is also very pleased to announce that as part of its sponsorship of the Discovery Awards, it will offer all of the nominees the opportunity to have their work featured in Cara Magazine and films screened on board its transatlantic flights, meaning winners could have an estimated 2.5 million sets of eyes on their work over the next 12 months. 

We are delighted to sponsor the Discovery Awards, which is a continuation of the company’s support for emerging Irish filmmaking talent, having previously sponsored the Irish Filmmakers Competition in association with Screen Ireland.  Ireland has always been famed for its storytelling, and Irish films and stories have continued to make a big impact on the world stage.  We congratulate all of the nominees for the Aer Lingus Discovery Award and we look forward to viewing their work.

Donal Moriarty, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, Aer Lingus

The Festival is very excited to welcome Aer Lingus as a sponsor of the Discovery Awards. I’m particularly proud of the sheer depth of talent and passion of this years Discovery Nominees, they range across all genres and film styles, bringing ambition and exceptional skill to their individual films. I look forward to rewatching their wonderful work during the busy festival and beyond as their careers continue to climb.

Grainne Humphreys, Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival Director

This year’s list of nominees reflects a wealth of vibrant and exciting young talent in the Irish film industry, many of whom are destined for great success in Ireland and on the world stage.  

The nominees are:

  • Allyn Quigley, Writer/Director, Moth
  • Cara Holmes, Director, Welcome to a Bright White Limbo
  • Claire Byrne, Director, Sister This
  • Clare Dunne, Writer/Cast, Herself
  • Die Hexen, Composer, Welcome to a Bright White Limbo
  • Dónall Ó’Héalaí, Lead Actor, Arracht 
  • Gwen Jeffares Hourie, Costume Designer, Broken Law and Sister This
  • Laragh McCann, Director, Hasta La Vista
  • Luke Morgan, Director, The Butterfly Love Song
  • Paddy Slattery, Director, Broken Law
  • Phil Blake, Cinematography, Break Us and Sister This
  • Shaun O’Connor, Director, A White Horse
  • Tristan Heanue, Writer/Director, Ciúnas

The Aer Lingus Discovery Award Jury is comprised of five leading figures from the Irish film industry; Claire Dix, Director, whose work includes Sunlight and We Are Moving; Rebecca O’Flanagan, Producer – Treasure Entertainment; Tony Cranstoun, Editor, whose work includes Vivarium and The Farthest; Jason Foran, Producer and Manager from Teach Solais; and Ruth Coady producer – Parallel Films. 

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