Home » Latest Irish News » Cork French Film Festival Celebrates France-Ireland Connection

Cork French Film Festival Celebrates France-Ireland Connection

The 34th Cork French Film Festival is set to take place from March 9 to 12 at the Gate Cinema, coinciding with the international film awards season.

The festival includes a variety of award-nominated films and Irish premieres. The opening film, L’Innocent, is a multiple winner at the 2023 Cesar Awards, scripted and directed by Louis Garrel. The festival is presented by Alliance Française de Cork, which celebrates its 140th anniversary this summer in Paris.

French Honorary Consul in Cork, Josselin Le Gall, said, “The Cork French Film Festival, now in its 34th year, is one of many ways in which Alliance Française de Cork perpetuates the connection between France and Ireland.

This year marks the 225th anniversary of ‘The Year of the French,’ which celebrates France’s attempt to assist the Society of United Irishmen against British rule. An anniversary like this brings home to us the strong links between France and Ireland, and indeed, the links between France and Cork in particular.”

This year’s festival theme is travel and exploring how cinema enables people to virtually travel to other places, as well as sparking curiosity to visit other cultures and countries. Alongside a number of prominent French films, the programme includes features from Belgium, Canada, and Senegal.

The festival incorporates school screenings and is supported by the French and Belgian Embassies in Ireland, Amarenco, Brittany Ferries, EirGrid, the Port of Cork, the Department of French of University College Cork, Eurotranslations Cork, Institut Français, the Irish Association of French-Language Teachers, and Explore France.

Alliance Française de Cork President Valérie David-McGonnell and Monsieur Le Gall direct the Cork French Film Festival. Valerie said, “Links between France and Cork run deep. Several French Huguenots served as Cork mayors in the past, such as Joseph Lavitt who gave his name to Lavitt’s Quay in the 18th century. In Cork City, there are two bridges named after women, both of whom had links with France. The museum dedicated to Nano Nagle, Nano Nagle Place, has won the 2022 Council of Europe Museum Prize in Strasbourg.”

Josselin said that Cork is home to the second-largest French community in Ireland, and several County Cork towns are twinned with French towns. The Cork-Rennes twinning has just celebrated its 40th anniversary. “The strong ties with Brittany Ferries which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year was highlighted when we visited Jean-Marc Roué, President of Brittany Ferries and recently appointed hon. consul of Ireland in Brittany.”

Reflecting on the popularity of French cinema, Josselin said that while the Cork French Film Festival has always had a devoted following, an exposure to foreign-language films and series through streaming services and a greater emphasis on these films at high-profile awards ceremonies have broadened the interest. Belgian film Close, which has also won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival, will be screened at the festival.

Valerie said, “Every single member of the Cork French Festival committee is passionate about Francophone cinema and we put a huge amount of thought into curating the programme. Securing the rights to screen the films each year is a tall order, and we are so grateful for all the help we receive. We could not run the festival each year without the help and support of our sponsors, and of course, the team at The Gate Cinema in Cork has been wonderful friends to us over the years.”

For more information, visit www.corkfrenchfilmfestival.com.

Categories: Top Business News