Fassbender, Gleeson at Sundance with World Premiere of Abrahamson’s FRANK

Element Pictures are delighted with today’s announcement that Lenny Abrahamson’s much anticipated FRANK has been selected to screen as part of the prestigious Premiere’s section at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, January 16-26, which showcases the very best of independent cinema.

FRANK is an offbeat comedy about a wannabe musician who finds himself out of his depth when he joins a maverick rock band led by the enigmatic Frank – a musical genius who hides himself inside a large fake head.

FRANK stars Domhnall Gleeson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Scoot McNairy and Michael Fassbender and is directed by Lenny Abrahamson (Adam & Paul, Garage, What Richard Did).  Written by Jon Ronson (The Men Who Stare At Goats) and Peter Straughan (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Men Who Stare At Goats), FRANK is a fictional story based on the memoir by Jon Ronson and loosely inspired by Frank Sidebottom (the persona of cult musician and comedy legend Chris Sievey), as well as outsider musicians like Daniel Johnston, Captain Beefheart and Harry Partch.

The film is produced by Ed Guiney (What Richard Did, The Guard), David Barron (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 and Part 2, Jack Ryan) and Stevie Lee (The Making of a Lady). The director of photography is James Mather (Adam & Paul), the production designer is Richard Bullock (StreetDance 3D, Spike Island) and music is by regular Abrahamson collaborator, Stephen Rennicks. Tessa Ross, Katherine Butler, Andrew Lowe and Nigel Williams are executive producers.

This is Element Picture’s fifth film in official selection at Sundance in recent years;  in 2009 Five Minutes of Heaven won the World Cinema Screenwriting Award for Guy Hibbert and the World Cinema Directing Award for Oliver Hirschbiegel. The Guard opened the festival in 2011 to a rapturous reception and in 2012 both James Marsh’s Shadow Dancer and Paolo Sorrentino’s This Must be the Place played to great acclaim at the Festival.

Speaking on the selection, Director Abrahamson said “It’s wonderful news that FRANK has been selected for Sundance. I can’t think of a better place for this film to begin its life. “

Producer Ed Guiney said “Sundance is the perfect place to launch the worldwide campaign of this great new film from Lenny Abrahamson. And its great to be there with fellow Irishmen and collaborators, Michael Fassbender and Domhnall Gleeson.”

FRANK is an Element Pictures / Runaway Fridge Production for Film4 and the British Film Institute in association with Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board and Protagonist Pictures.

Irish audiences will get an opportunity to see FRANK in cinemas when it goes on theatrical release on May 2 2014


Element Pictures Distribution is delighted to announce that they will release Kieron J. Walsh’s  JUMP on April 26th is cinemas throughout Ireland.

Starring Charlene McKenna (Raw, Ripper Street), Martin McCann (Shadow Dancer, Killing Bono) Nicola Burley (Streetdance) & Valene Kane (The Fading Light) JUMP follows the lives of four twenty-something’s whose lives collide in a night of fast talk, accidents and intrigue. As the clock ticks towards midnight and the night’s events expertly fall into place, JUMP weaves an existential portrait of our character’s lives as their hopes, fears and secrets are revealed.

Speaking on the release, Director Kieron J. Walsh commented that  ” To say Jump was a hard film to make would be an understatement. What makes it all worthwhile is witnessing the audience response at festivals both in Ireland and all over the world. However a cinema release throughout the island of Ireland is the most important part of the film’s life. Jump was tailor made to be watched on the big screen and I am very excited at the prospect of the Irish public having the opportunity to do so”

JUMP is a Hotshot Films and Bl!nder Films Production in association with Northern Ireland Screen, Limelight Media, Bord Scannán Na hÉireann/Irish Film Board, Bentico Trading Ltd and BBC Northern Ireland.

Find out more about JUMP on Twitter and Facebook


UPC, Ireland’s leading provider of entertainment, information and communications, has signed a new agreement with award winning Irish Production Company Element Pictures and its distribution arm that will see a selection of the company’s leading films made available to Irish television viewers through the UPC On Demand service.

The IFTA award winning documentary Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God will be the first film from Element Pictures Distribution to be available through UPC On Demand from 22nd of February, the same day that the film is released in cinemas.

The film, from Academy Award winning film maker Alex Gibney explores issues of power in the Catholic Church and a cover-up that winds its way from a row of houses in Milwaukee Wisconsin, through Ireland’s churches all the way to the highest office of the Vatican.

Andrew Lowe, director for EPD said,

“We are very pleased to partner with UPC to supply Irish films for their on-demand platform which has enjoyed great success since it launched last May. We see UPC’s on Demand platform as an important means of delivering our films to customers in a cost effective and convenient way.  EPD has enjoyed box office success with recent releases such as WHAT RICHARD DID and THE GUARD, films which prove there is a committed audience for Irish films, and we look forward to supplying these and other films to UPC for their customer’s enjoyment.”

David Kent Content Development Manager with UPC said,

“Element Pictures has been responsible for some of the best home grown productions in recent years and UPC is delighted to partner with them to provide their award winning content through our On Demand service. The partnership also allows us to offer UPC customers a first in Irish television, Mea Maxima Culpa will be available to view On Demand at the same time as its cinema release, allowing you to see the best Irish films first, from the comfort of your home.”


The Irish Video on Demand platform Volta today announced a new content partnership with leading UK Distributor Artificial Eye, coinciding with the VOD release of Holy Motors, which is now available to stream or download on Volta.

Volta (Best E-Commerce Website, 2012 Irish Web Awards) offers an online catalogue of Irish and international independent films to a nationwide audience. The partnership with Artificial Eye, one of the UK’s leading distribution companies, will bring a host of new releases and classic titles to the popular ‘pay as you watch’ video-on-demand site.

Artificial Eye titles already available on the site include Holy Motors, the Leon Carax hit of Cannes 2012 which stars Denis Lavant, Kylie Minogue and Eva Mendes, 360 which stars Jude Law, Anthony Hopkins and Rachel Weisz and Life During Wartime directed by Todd Solondz, starring Ciarán Hinds and Allison Janney.

Recent releases which will be added to the site include the 2013 Academy Award Best Picture Nominee Amour, directed by Michael Haneke, Sally Potter’s Ginger & Rosa(Christina Hendricks, Annette Bening) and Alps, directed by Yorgos Lanthimos (Dogtooth). The Artificial Eye catalogue also includes titles such as Code Unknown, Funny Games, The Piano Teacher and Hidden by Michael Haneke, Antichrist andMelancholia by Lars von Trier, Of Gods And Men, The Maid and Waltz With Bashiramong many others.

Speaking of the partnership, Andrew Lowe, CEO of Volta said “We are proud to partner with Artificial Eye and host their excellent collection of films on Volta. Our objective is to bring the best of Irish and independent cinema into homes across the country and the titles available to us through this new partnership represent a great opportunity for Irish audiences to watch internationally acclaimed films at home. This is a great step forward for Volta and we look forward to announcing more great additions and partnerships in the coming months”.

Philip Knatchbull, CEO of Curzon Artificial Eye, says: “We’re delighted to have a deal in place with Volta, and to have our films available to their audience across Ireland.”

Artificial Eye joins Film 4, Momentum Pictures, Revolver Entertainment, Pathé, Dogwoof, Element Pictures Distribution and many other Irish and international distributors whose titles are available to watch through the Volta website and the recently launched Volta Facebook App.


Element Pictures Distribution is delighted to announce the forthcoming Irish DVD and on-demand release of WHAT RICHARD DID.  Nominated for ten Irish Film and Television (IFTA) awards, including Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Script, WHAT RICHARD DID is also nominated for Best Screenplay at this year’s London Evening Standard British Film Awards.

WHAT RICHARD DID is available to rent exclusively from Xtra-vision from 25th January and to buy on DVD and watch on-demand from 8th February.  The DVD can be ordered now from the Element Pictures Distribution shop for delivery upon release.

DVD Special features include: Audio Commentary with director Lenny Abrahamson and writer Malcolm Campbell and Director’s Interview.

WHAT RICHARD DID follows Richard Karlsen (Jack Reynor), golden-boy athlete and undisputed alpha-male of his privileged set of South Dublin teenagers, through the summer between the end of school and the beginning of university. The world is bright and everything seems possible, until one summer night Richard does something that destroys it all and shatters the lives of the people closest to him.

DVD will be available to buy nationwide.  Stockists include:  Xtra-vision, Golden Discs,Tesco’s, Heatons and Tower Records.  Stream or Download online via www.volta.ie


Director Ian FitzGibbon’s ( A Film With Me In It, Perrier’s Bounty, Paths to Freedom, Moone Boy) latest feature DEATH OF A SUPERHERO tells the story of fifteen-year-old Donald Clarke who after several cycles of chemotherapy feels he has little left to hope for. Worst of all, he might die a virgin! Based on the best-selling novel by Anthony McCarten DEATH OF A SUPERHERO is a poignant coming-of-age story addressing the most painful of circumstances alongside a rich and often humorous treatment of classic teen preoccupations.

With its innovative mix of live action and animation, DEATH OF A SUPERHERO features stand-out performances from Andy Serkis (Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit), Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Love Actually, Nowhere Boy) and Aisling Loftus (Oranges and Sunshine).

Speaking on the release, Director Ian FitzGibbon is “thrilled that Irish audiences will have the opportunity to see my film on the big screen and hope that cinemagoers will be charmed with Donald’s life-affirming story”

Produced by Michael Garland of Grand Pictures, DEATH OF A SUPERHERO has won a slew of awards across various film festivals including Special Jury Critics Award for Aisling Loftus at Dublin International Film Festival, Young Jury Award at Leeds Young Peoples Film Festival and Public and Youth Public Award at Les Arcs, European Film Festival. DEATH OF A SUPERHERO was also selected to screen at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival, The Tribeca Film Festival and The European Film Festival amongst many others.

DEATH OF A SUPERHERO is a German-Irish Co-Production between Bavaria Pictures and Grand Pictures, in Co-Production with Picture Circle, Cinemendo/Trixter and CinePostproduction in collaboration with Bavaria Film. Funded by FilmFernsehFonds Bayern, German Federal Film Board, Bayerischer Bankenfonds, German Federal Film Fund, the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media and Bord Scannán na hÉireann / The Irish Film Board.

Watch the trailer here and keep up with news about the Irish release on Facebook andTwitter


Element Pictures Distribution is delighted to announce that they have secured the rights to Academy Award® winning documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney’s (Taxi to the Dark Side, Enron: the Smartest Guys in the Room) next feature. The deal was negotiated byContent, international sales agent for the film.

HBO Documentary Films and Jigsaw’s Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God explores the abuse of power in the Catholic Church through the story of four courageous deaf men, who in the first known case of public protest, set out to expose the priest who abused them. Through their case the film follows a cover-up that winds its way from the row houses of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, through the bare ruined choirs of Ireland’s churches, all the way to the highest office of the Vatican.

Hailed by the critics at the recent Toronto International Film Festival Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God features the voices of Chris Cooper, Ethan Hawke, Jamey Sheridan and John Slattery and will be released in Irish cinemas Spring 2013.

Director Alex Gibney is delighted with the news that my film is to get a theatrical release in Ireland so that Irish audiences have an opportunity to see the film on the big screen.  Elements of this story are sadly all too familiar to an Irish audience, but in tracing the lines of responsibility and knowledge of the systematic abuse of deaf kids in Milwaukee over a forty year period by Father Lawrence Murphy, direct to the highest echelons of the Vatican, we have brought a new and disturbing dimension to this story.  I look forward to coming to Ireland next year when the film is released and having the opportunity to present my film, and discuss the issues it raises.”

Speaking on EPD’s most recent acquisition, Andrew Lowe, director of Element Pictures commented that “We are really pleased to have acquired the Irish distribution rights toMea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God Alex Gibney’s powerful new documentary which is a searing indictment of the Vatican’s failure to adequately deal with the universal problem of clerical child abuse.  We are looking forward to giving Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God a theatrical release in Ireland early next year and giving Irish audiences an opportunity to make up their own minds on the issues it raises.”

Sheila Nevins is executive producer and Sara Bernstein is supervising producer for HBO Documentary Films; other executive producers are Lori Singer and Jessica Kingdon. The film is produced by Alex Gibney, Todd Wider, Jedd Wider, Alexandra Johnes and Kristen Vaurio through Jigsaw Productions, in association with Wider Film Projects. Below The Radar is the Irish co-producer with the support of Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board.