The Irish Film and Television Academy has unveiled its nominees for the 11th annual Irish Film and Television Awards, which takes place on April 5 in Dublin. In the Best Film category are Neil Jordan’s Byzantium; John Michael McDonagh’s Calvary; Steph Green’s Run & Jump; Stephen Brown’s The Sea; and John Butler’s The Stag. Ruiri Robinson is nominated for director for his debut sci-fi feature film The Last Days On Mars alongside Butler, Jordan and McDonagh. The Best Actor category includes Brendan Gleeson for Calvary; Domhnall Gleeson for About Time; Ciarán Hinds in The Sea; and The Stag’s Andrew Scott. Antonia Campbell-Hughes is nominated for Best Actress in 3096 Days, alongside Saoirse Ronan in Byzantium; Jane McGrath in Black Ice; and Kelly Thornton in Life’s A Breeze. The male supporting race includes Colin Farrell for Saving Mr Banks; Michael Fassbender for 12 Years A Slave; Edward MacLiam for Run & Jump and Peter McDonald for The Stag. Female supporting actors recognized are Sinead Cusack for The Sea; Fionnula Flannigan for Life’s A Breeze; Amy Huberman for The Stag and Orla O’Rourke for Calvary. Up for Best International Film are 12 Years A Slave, Gravity, Philomena and The Wolf Of Wall Street. Among TV nominees is Gillian Anderson thriller The Fall; HBO’s Game Of Thrones; historical action drama Vikings; period crime series Quirke; and urban drama Love/Hate. Downton Abbey, Moone Boy and Dracula also scored acting nods. The full list of IFTA nominees is here.
BSkyB has ordered a fourth series of award-winning comedy drama Stella. The 10-part Tidy Productions show for Sky 1 is created by and stars Ruth Jones. The new season goes into production later this year for broadcast in 2015. The third season is currently airing on Friday nights. It follows a 40-something single mom as she juggles the ups and downs of her family, amid the chaos of her eccentric friends, relatives and children’s fathers. It was the second biggest UK comedy launch in multichannel history with its debut in 2012. The family saga, set in the Welsh valleys, is Sky 1’s most watched comedy to date.
Gearing up for the César Awards tomorrow, France’s Daniel Toscan du Plantier Prize was awarded earlier this week to producer Sylvie Pialat. Pialat founded Les Films du Worso in 2003 and is the producer of last year’s Cannes hit Stranger By The Lake as well as Guillaume Nicloux’s La Religieuse. Both films are up for prizes on Friday; Stranger has the second most nominations with eight.
Red Arrow International has secured worldwide rights to distribute Beligan format Safety First. Created by Tim van Aelst (What If?, Benidorm Bastards), the show has been a ratings hit at home on VTM, outperforming the channel average by up to 63%. The comedy series is set at a security company founded by an ex-security guard desperate to prove himself. Along with his sister and two former colleagues, the four are totally incompetent security guards, who just about survive through discipline, dedication and friendship.