16 October 2023
By Mary Bemingham
Festival also announces two other prestige titles, One Night in Millstreet and Brave the Dark
Cork International Film Festival has announced that the Opening Gala of the 2023 Festival will be the Irish Premiere of Poor Things, the award-winning, critically acclaimed new film from Yorgos Lanthimos, produced by Irish company Element Pictures. The Opening Night Gala takes place at Cork Opera House on Thursday November 9th.
Ed Guiney and Andrew Lowe from Element Pictures, producers of Poor Things, said “We are so proud of this film and of how it has been received by audiences around the world so far. It’s a real honour for us to have Cork International Film Festival host the Irish premiere of the film on their Opening Night. To screen the film at the longest running film festival in Ireland with Poor Things is another prestigious step in the journey of this very special film.”
From filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos and producer Emma Stone comes the incredible tale and fantastical evolution of Bella Baxter (Stone), a young woman brought back to life by the brilliant and unorthodox scientist Dr. Godwin Baxter (Willem Dafoe). Under Baxter’s protection, Bella is eager to learn. Hungry for the worldliness she is lacking, Bella runs off with Duncan Wedderburn (Mark Ruffalo), a slick and debauched lawyer, on a whirlwind adventure across the continents. Free from the prejudices of her times, Bella grows steadfast in her purpose to stand for equality and liberation. Winner of the Golden Lion, Venice Film Festival 2023. Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures.
Fiona Clark, Festival Director & CEO of Cork International Film Festival, commented “With the determination of our talented programming team, we are thrilled to be able to open the 68th edition of the Festival this year with the Irish Premiere of one of the most talked about films of 2023, Poor Things. This is a phenomenal coup for the Festival and firmly maintains our reputation as the leading film festival in Ireland. We can’t wait to share more exciting, high-profile titles with our audiences when we launch our full programme on Wednesday, October 11th.”
Cork International Film Festival has also announced two additional prestige titles in advance of the unveiling of the full programme next week. The 68th edition of the Festival will screen over 200 films and events across Cork city and county with an expanded programme from November 9th – 26th 2023. Tickets for all three pre-announced films will be on sale from 10am on Friday October 6th at https://corkfilmfest.org/
The Irish Gala will be the World Premiere of highly anticipated documentary One Night in Millstreet, directed by two-time Best Sports Doc IFTA winner Andrew Gallimore and produced by Morgan Bushe and Peter Murnaghan, which will take place on November 11th in The Everyman, Cork.
The film will bring the Cork audience a reminder of an extraordinary and spectacular event that took place over the St. Patrick’s weekend of 1995, a world championship boxing match deep in the countryside of County Cork. One Night in Millstreet not only relives the titanic contest that took place in the Green Glens Arena, but also marks the trajectory of the two competitors. The preening, self-regarding, and mentally formidable Super Middleweight Champion, Chris Eubank, and the hungry challenger from Cabra, Steve Collins. The World Premiere will be attended by the filmmakers and special guests. The film is in competition for the inaugural ‘CIFF Best New Irish Feature Award, proudly supported by the Irish Examiner’. Courtesy of Wildcard Distribution, Fastnet Films and Proposition Films.
The international premiere of feature film Brave The Dark, by filmmaker Damian Harris, will also take place in The Everyman, Cork on November 11th.
Based on a true story, Brave The Dark powerfully portrays Stan Deen (Jared Harris), a 1980s small-town teacher, as he is drawn into the mysterious past of a student. Stan attempts to reach Nate (Nicholas Hamilton), lost, angry and haunted by fragments of frightening memories that he can’t fully understand. Stan’s quiet belief that no student is a lost cause and refusal to give up on him, finally cracks open Nate’s shattering, locked history, as both men find the courage to prove that no one is imprisoned by fate. Damian Harris directs from a screenplay based on the true life of Nathaniel Deen who will be in attendance. Director Damian Harris, and actors Jared and Jamie Harris (sons of renowned actor Richard Harris) will be in attendance.
The Richard Harris Archive was recently gifted to University College Cork (UCC), and Cork International Film Festival is delighted to announce an expanded partnership with UCC in 2023, as its Academic Partner, reflecting the wide-ranging and long-standing relationship between two of Cork’s outstanding cultural and educational institutions. The Festival collaborates with UCC across multiple disciplines and activities, including its award-winning youth film and mental health programme, Intinn, Green Screen strand, and the CIFF Digital Archive, and will showcase the short film produced by the UCC Puttnam Scholars, mentored by Lord David Puttnam, the Festival’s Patron.