Despite the abundance of festivals taking place every year around Ireland, you’d be surprised to find that there isn’t one film festival purely dedicated to comedy. In fact, comedy is often overlooked in favour of drama and other genres when it comes to festival programming.
Award winning filmmaker and actor Maureen (‘Mo’) O’Connell cleverly spotted the gap in the market and swooped down on this opportunity to give comedy writers and filmmakers a platform to showcase their work while entertaining the viewing public with some well needed laughs.
And so the Dublin International Comedy Film Festival (DICFF) was born, going entirely online for its inaugural year in 2020 due to Covid restrictions. Ran over 2 days in December 2020, the festival screened over 70 films, offered Q&As with actors and filmmakers from around the world, and also held live comedy events over Zoom.
It was a massive success and drew huge numbers of audiences. The overwhelming feedback was that a wonderful community atmosphere was created, allowing our audiences, filmmakers, cast and crews to share in the joy of great comedy.
Mo O’Connell “Irish people are very funny and the stories they tell and the way they tell them is also very funny. So, having a film festival dedicated to comedy in Ireland seemed to me a no-brainer!
The festival is now returning for its second year from Thursday 20th to Saturday 22nd of January 2022 with an even more exciting programme of films and events, and is also returning to an online format due to the ongoing Covid situation.
The jam packed programme includes over 40 short films, 9 feature films, comedy sketches and web-series from Ireland and around the globe. There’s also a terrific line up of live comedy acts, filmmaker Q&As, a closing awards ceremony, and more… giving online audiences three days of side-splitting fun.
The team are disappointed not to be bringing in-person events to Dublin just yet, but are buoyed by all the success they had last year and how much people needed those laughs and sense of fun and community that DICFF can provide- even online!
This year also sees Ireland’s very own National Broadcaster, RTE, deciding to put their weight behind the festival too. DICFF is delighted to now be supported on social media by RTE Supporting the Arts Scheme. This was a real boon for the festival!
Mo O’Connell’s debut feature film, the slacker comedy “Spa Weekend”, has won numerous awards and nominations throughout festivals in Europe. With Mo at the helm, it’s certainly looking good for the Dublin International Comedy Film Festival.
Mo O’Connell: “You have to be braver to make a comedy because if your film screens at a festival and it doesn’t make people laugh- that stings! So, I thought I’d celebrate those of us brave- or indeed stupid enough – to try our hand at comedies!”
Reviews from filmmakers:
“INCREDIBLE festival. Easily the best comedy film festival out there. Not just creating a festival but also a community.” – Oakmead Prods. UK
“Absolutely loved this festival. It managed to generate a great community atmosphere despite it all being online. Looking forward to more, a great start to a festival.” – Gerard Faherty, Ireland
“The Festival is run by the people who really care and who understand the film world. The competition and the level of contestants is remarkable.” – Martina Adamcova, Canada
“Had a wonderful time at the inaugural DICFF – some seriously funny films, great people, hospitality and communication. Thank you for making us feel welcome even though we’re so far away!” – Kate Kaminski, USA
Full information and Ticket Booking here
MO (or ‘Maureen’) O’CONNELL is the Festival Director of Dublin International Comedy Film Festival.
Mo is a filmmaker and actor from Dublin, Ireland.
She is a graduate of RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art), London, with a BA in Acting &of Ballyfermot Film School, Dublin with a Diploma in Film Production.
She has acted in several theatre productions including, “Juno & the Paycock” at the Bristol Old Vic and the Liverpool Playhouse, alongside Des McAleer & Niamh Cusack and recently “Abbey Calls” for Dublin’s Abbey Theatre and on TV, for BBC1’s “Father Brown” as ‘Oonagh Crawford’ alongside Mark Williams and James Fleet, to name but a few.
She has made several no-budget award-winning short films namely, “Proclaim!”, “GIRLS”, “Meitherhood”, “Missed…” & “Thespish”. And she has also made a multi-award-winning no-budget slacker comedy feature film called, “SPA Weekend”.
Screen Ireland commissioned Mo to direct a short film called, “HUM” written by Ivan Cush.
She also received funding for co-writing a feature length version of her short film, “GIRLS” with wonderful co-writer, Gemma Creagh via Screen Ireland’s Spotlight Scheme.
Mo recently won a commission from the Kildare Film Fund to produce Katie McNeice’s short film, “Lambing” & recently wrapped production as of October 22nd 2021.
Mo also won the Kerry County Council Film Commission to direct short film, “HAVEN”, co-written by Ivan Cush & Rehan Ali & recently wrapped production as of November 5th 2021.