Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival is marking the United Nations International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C), today February 6th, by announcing that it will host the World Premiere of A Girl from Mogadishu at a gala screening at Odeon Point Village (Feb 22nd, 8.30pm). This inspiring true story of female empowerment based on the testimony of Ifrah Ahmed written and directed by Mary McGuckian, tells of Ifrah’s astonishing and powerful journey as a refugee from Somalia who emerges as one of the world’s foremost activists for the eradication of FGM/C. Fleeing war-torn Somalia in 2006, she is trafficked to Ireland where she undergoes a traumatic medical examination which reveals the extent of her mutilation as a child. Traumatized by the memory, she turns her experiences into a force for good, emerging as one of the world’s most foremost global activists against FGM/C.

Also announced today is Ben Is Back at Odeon Point Village (Feb 28th, 6.15 pm) which stars Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges (Manchester by the Sea, Ladybird, Boy Erased) and deals with the difficult issue of drug addiction. Lucas plays Ben, a drug addicted teenager who unexpectedly returns home one Christmas Eve. His mother Holly (Julia Roberts) is thrilled to be reunited with her son but wary about his ability to stay clean, while Ben’s distrustful sister Ivy (Kathryn Newton) and common-sense stepfather Neal (Courtney B. Vance) fear he will wreak havoc on their lives as he’s done so many times before. After Ben launches a charm offensive that wins over his young half-siblings, Holly agrees to let him stay for the holiday on one condition. For the next 24 hours, she will personally monitor his every move.

A third film added to the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival programme is The Wedding Guest at Odeon Point Village (Feb 24th, 4pm), the latest film from English director Michael Winterbottom. The tense thriller starring Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire, Lion) centres on a mysterious British Muslim man on his journey across Pakistan and India.

The 17th Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival, Ireland’s premier film event, returns to the capital from February 20th to March 3rd. The packed programme features over 125 events across 12 days including the finest local and international feature films, short films and documentaries, along with a dedicated children’s and young people’s programme and a host of special events featuring  industry leaders.

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Virgin Media DIFF season tickets and gift vouchers are also available. For more information visit www.diff.ie

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