Virgin Media Discovers judge Birch Hamilton has urged Irish filmmakers to seize the ‘opportunity of a lifetime’, as the deadline to submit entries into a competition that has already attracted huge interest looms large this Friday (July 26th).
As Executive Director of Screen Directors Guild of Ireland, Hamilton has vast experience identifying talent that will be invaluable to a Virgin Media Discovers judging panel that includes IFTA and BAFTA award-winning Irish director Neasa Hardiman and Line Of Duty actor Adrian Dunbar.
The competition has already attracted huge interest from Irish filmmakers, with Hamilton urging all entrants to make the most of a flourishing television landscape eager to find new stars.
“There is a real opportunity here for someone who is brave, bold and has an authentic story to tell to look inside and challenge themselves to make a film that will be different to what we have seen before,” said Hamilton.
“This short film could be the start of a journey that develops with Virgin Media and the platform this competition is providing could be life-changing because I can’t think of a better time for a talented filmmaker to stand up, get noticed and have a chance to work in television.”
“We are seeing an explosion of ideas and exciting creativity, with a huge investment in talent across a wide range of the like we have never seen before. With so many platforms to place work on in the changing media times, we are also seeing an opportunity for new talents to display their work and that is the big change in the television industry.”
“This is a moment when talent is being backed by financiers, producers and executives and are getting a chance to have a free reign to follow their instincts and produce good television. There are so many new voices out there and diversity is being embraced, whether it is across races or genders.”
Hamilton, Hardiman and Dunbar will be joined on the judging panel by Bill Malone, Director of Content at Virgin Media Television and Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival director Grainne Humphreys.
“I’m hoping we give someone an opportunity to produce a film that will have a festival screening and will be shown on Virgin Media as they look to launch their careers at a moment when we are living through a golden age of television and creativity,” added Hamilton.
“Opportunity is everything in our industry and it cannot get better than this. A short film is a launchpad to give a glimpse of your talent and I’m really excited to see what comes out of it.”
“I hear we have had lots of entries so far and it will be great to sit down with the wonderful judging panel to try and identify a worthy recipient of this award.”
Entrants are invited to submit scripts by tomorrow, Friday 26th July for a proposed 10-minute short film which, the ultimate winner will win a €35,000 worth of investment to fund the production of a 10 minute short film, which will then be broadcast on Virgin Media Television, Virgin Media On Demand and screened at the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival 2020.