There was a full house in Screen Two at Tullamore Omniplex last Friday night for the premiere of the short film Toy Soldiers which was shot entirely on location in Tullamore in November 2011 under the FilmOffaly annual script award.
Featuring debut performances by Tullamore teenagers Darragh O’Toole and Mollie McCann, the film also stars Robert Donnelly (the Tudors) and Una Kavanagh (Fair City).
It tells the story of two brothers, the older of which (Shane) is reluctantly minding the young one (Charlie), while their widowed mother is at work; Tullamore is their playground but the games stop when Charlie’s two toy soldiers become separated.
This is FilmOffaly’s third funded film, (Noreen 2009, The End of the Reel 2010) which aims to encourage film production companies to work in Offaly.
Each film has gone on to much success in particular Noreen, which has picked up international awards and has been screened on RTE.
Three years into the award many local people have participated as cast or crew on these films and some are already moving into a career in film as a result.
Chairperson on FilmOffaly Molly Buckley said “we are committed to encouraging more film production in Offaly, it has obvious benefits in showcasing the county, on the local economy and for encouraging a career in film. We are now beginning to see the effects and Offaly is now very well known as a film friendly county.”
Following the premiere, Toy Soldiers (written by Matthew Roche, directed by Mike Hayes and produced by Ciara Gillan) will be submitted to film festivals nationally and internationally.
The 2012 FilmOffaly award is currently under way, 97 scripts have been submitted which are currently being assessed.
For more information on FilmOffaly, please see www.filmoffaly.ie email firstname.lastname@example.org or follow FilmOffaly on Facebook.