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Conflict and Trauma in British and Irish Cinema and the Business of Films in Ireland and Luxembourg

Hôtel Parc Belair, 111 Avenue du Dix Septembre, Hollerich Luxembourg

Dr. James Gallacher will give a brief overview of depictions of Conflict and Trauma in British and Irish Cinema with a focus Richard Harris as Cromwell (he starred as the lead character in the 1970 film "Oliver Cromwell" by Ken Hughes) amidst the backdrop of The Troubles - the documentary "The Ghost of Richard Harris" is being screened on Thursday 21 September at the Cinémathèque within the BIFFL 2023 Autumn Edition. Dr. Gallacher will be giving two lecture series under Irish Studies at the University of Luxembourg during the coming academic year, one entitled "Irish Writers in Context", addressing Jonathan Swift and Oscar Wilde, etc., and the other on "Conflict and Trauma in British and Irish cinema from WWII".

The Seminar will be followed by an ILCC-sponsored presentation on “The Business of Irish - Luxembourg Film Production"

Ken O'Mahony will share his experiences of setting up a Section 481 Film Production Company as well as a specific film production company (which addresses modern-day relationship issues including conflict and trauma). The presentation will review his subsequent engagements regarding ti filmmakers (from directors and actors through to lighting assistants, etc). He will present a case study outlining how a young Irish company was able to overcome the challenges of getting funding support in both Ireland and Luxembourg

The seminar and presentation will be followed by a networking cocktail.

• €25 from, or
• Free to ILCC members (to register, email:

event report

The Ireland Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce welcomed speakers Dr James Gallacher, Cultural Historian from the University of Luxembourg, to speak about conflict and trauma in British and Irish film both past and present. Also welcomed was Ken O’Mahony who spoke about the Business of Film Production in Ireland and Luxembourg.

The seminar was opened by Joe Huggard, Chairman of ILCC.

Dr Gallacher spoke first about the evolution of the Irish film making and how it depicted violence and conflict through the lens of Irish nationalism.

Dr Gallacher explained how the nationalist narrative in Irish film making, tempered as more Irish people emigrated to the UK in search of work, and by those Irish who joined the British army to fight during the first world war. From 1930‘s onwards there was a shift from a partisan script in Irish film making to that which highlighted the importance of human connection between Ireland and the UK.

Referencing films from the early nationalist narrative i.e., Rory Moore-Story of an Irish Patriot, to the later more tempered films of the 1930s, i.e. Ourselves Alone, Dr Gallacher was able to demonstrate the shift in partisan approach by Irish film makers.

Dr Gallacher’s seminar was followed by an overview from Ken O'Mahony, on the setting up of a film production company and the financing strategies involved in film making in present day Ireland and Luxembourg.

Mr O’Mahony explained that funding was available from Screen Ireland, the development agency for the Irish Film Industry, for Film Development, Film Production and Film Distribution. Additional funding is available from Ireland’s Revenue Commissioners, in which Qualifying Production companies can avail of a tax credit, known as Section 481, for film and TV production made in Ireland. Production companies can apply for loans in Luxembourg through Film Fund Luxembourg.

In attendance was Ireland’s new ambassador to Luxembourg, Jean McDonald.

The seminar was concluded by Geoff Thompson, festival organiser, following an engaging Q&A.

Members and friends then retired to a networking cocktail.

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