Irish Abroad: The Lobster and My Name is Emily amongst in-production Irish films at Les Arcs

Next month the French ski resort of Les Arcs plays host to the Les Arcs European Film Festival, The event, which runs from December 13th to 20th, will feature a host of films from around Europe, and this year has chosen Ireland to be its featured country.

In addition to the many great finished films from this island and around the continent, the festival will play host to filmmakers who will present their upcoming projects at the Les Arcs Co-Production Village. This year this village will feature 25 projects in development and a further 10 Works-in-Progress.

These projects are competing against one another with Arte awarding a €4,000 prize to one of the projects in the co-production village, and post-production company LVT offering a film in the Work-in-Progress section €6,000 worth of services.

Of Irish interest in the co-production village will be Yorgos Lanthimos’s first English-language film The Lobster, with Andrew Lowe of Element Pictures participating in a case study on the film, alongside its French co-producer and distributor Carole Scotta of Haut et Court.

In other events during the co-production village, Andrew Lowe of Element Pictures will participate in a case study on Yorgos Lanthimos’s first English-language film The Lobster, starring Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz, Ben Whishaw and Léa Seydoux, alongside its French co-producer and distributor Carole Scotta of Haut et Court.

The film is an unconventional love story which follows a desperate man who breaks with the rules of the dystopian The City where single people are arrested and obliged to find a matching mate in 45 days at The Hotel. If they fail, they are transformed into an animal of their choosing and released into The Woods. Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz lead, alongside John C. Reilly, Ashley Jensen, Michael Smiley, Jessica Barden, Ben Whishaw, Léa Seydoux, Ariane Labed, Angeliki Papoulia, and Olivia Colman.

Another Irish film represented in the Work-in Progress strand will be Simon Fitzmaurice’s My Name is Emily , a road movie and love story between two teens, about a young girl who, with the help of a friend, sets out to find her father Robert, a visionary writer locked up in a psychiatric institution.

Evanna Lynch, Michael Smiley, and George Webster star in award-winning film director Simon Fitzmaurice’s debut feature. Fitzmaurice was diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease (ALS) in 2008, and although now completely paralysed, typed the script and directed the film by using his eyes and iris recognition software.

My Name is Emily is being produced by Irish companies Newgrange Pictures and Kennedy Films and has been financed by the Irish Film Board, BAI, TV3 and the Irish tax incentive, with co-production finance coming from Sweden and Norway.

Allyn Quigley’s The White Cell, representing The National Film School will also show at the Low Budget Film Forum.

Other Irish films showing as In-Development at the festival include Aku Louhimies’ Cycle, produced by David Collins of Samson Films, Neasa Hardiman’s Sea Fever, produced by Brendan McCarthy and John McDonnell of Fantastic Films, David Roddham’s Trade, produced by Alan Maher of Roads Entertainment, Sophie Fiennes’ documentary Grace Jones – The Musical of My Life, produced by Katie Holly of Blinder Films and Fiennes’ Amoeba Films.