Audience Award and DFCC Awards

After an action-packed 10 days showing the best in Irish and international cinema the curtain came down on the 22nd Dublin International Film Festival with the World Premiere of the much-anticipated adaptation of John McGahern’s That They May Face The Rising Sun, followed by an exclusive post-show discussion with director Pat Collins and lead actors Barry Ward and Anna Bederke.

The final award of the festival was given to Ross Killeen’s Don’t Forget to Remember which was announced as the overall winner of the Audience Award at the 2024 Dublin International Film Festival.

Commenting on the award, producer Louise Byrne said: “We are honoured and delighted to win the audience choice award at DIFF, it’s a personal film so it was particularly special to have our cast, crew and families present at our World Premiere at home.

Although it’s a very personal film, Don’t Forget to Remember holds universal themes of love and loss, but most importantly, it’s about how we remember and shows how fragile those memories can be. After showing it at DIFF we want to continue this conversation around alzheimers, the brittleness of memory and what it means to care for someone whose memories are escaping them. We can’t wait to engage with festivals around the world to share our film with a wider audience.”

Gráinne Humphreys, Festival Director said: “Its been a hugely successful festival on many fronts with sold out screenings, industry events and a delightful buzzy atmosphere from the cinemas and other venues. We worked hard to connect our programme with audiences across the city and beyond and we succeeded . For many years the DIFF Audience Award has gone to an Irish documentary and this year was no exception – the highly competitive award has been won by an brilliantly made and incredibly moving film.”

Runners up for the Audience Award were Goodbye Julia writer/director Mohamed Kordofani’s debut moral drama set in a fractured and politically tense Sudan and Birdsong Kathleen Harris’ inspiring documentary following Irish ornithologist Seán Ronayne on his mission to record the call of every bird species in Ireland.

Baby Steps scooped the Shorts Audience Award. Hannah Mamalis the director and Festival Discovery Award nominee said: “It really is very cool and gratifying to get to make things for people and so much more so when they like it too. Baby Steps is about how connection is enmeshed in everything we do, even as we’re all perpetually stepping on the same rakes. I’m excited to be developing more films that people will hopefully find weird and funny and ultimately connective.”

Throughout the Festival there were many other honours, including the highly contested Dublin Film Critics Circle Awards, which this year named Do Not Expect Much From The End Of The World as Best Film, That They May Face The Rising Sun as Best Irish Film, and Victor Erice as Best Director for Close Your Eyes. Individual awards went to filmmaker Guy Maddin whose acclaimed films Archangel, The Green Fog, Brand Upon The Brain, and My Winnipeg screened at the Festival (George Byrne Maverick Award) and rising stars Pavia Sidhu and Yugam Sood of Dear Jassi (Michael Dwyer Discovery Award).

Other accolades went to Bye Bye Tiberias which won both Best Documentary and The ICCL Human Rights Award; Room Taken which won the Sue Bruce Smith Shorts Award and Aoife Fealy, Lochlainn McKenna and Joe Robbins who were all named as the 2024 Discovery Award winners.

Full list of Festival Awards winners below:


Feature winner Don’t Forget to Remember

Irish Short winner Baby Steps


Best Film – Do Not Expect Much From the End of the World

Best Director – Victor Erice, Close Your Eyes

Best Screenplay – Ilker Çatak & Johannes Duncker, The Teacher’s Lounge

Best Actor – Ayoub Elaid & Abdelatif El Mansouri, Hounds 

Best Actress – Eka Chavleishvili, Blackbird Blackbird Blackberry

Best Cinematography – Mami Wata

Best Score – Monster

Best Editing – Evil Does Not Exist

Best Debut Feature –Orlando, My Political Biography

Best Ensemble – Green Border

Best Irish Film – That They May Face The Rising Sun 

Best Documentary – Made in England: The Films of Powell and Pressburger

Special Jury Prize – Oink

George Byrne Maverick Award – Guy Maddin

Michael Dwyer Discovery Award – Pavia Sidhu and Yugam Sood, Dear Jassi  


The Discovery Awards aim to identify, champion, support and encourage new and emerging talent from both in front and behind the camera, and this year’s jury has selected Aoife Fealy, Lochlainn Mckenna, and Joe Robbins as recipients of the awards.

Commenting on the winners, the jury said: “Exploring the work of this year’s Discovery nominees was an absolute joy. The range of talent on show was exceptional across all disciplines. The work of Lochlainn, Aoife and Joe not only showed immense talent and clarity of creative vision but also huge potential, which felt crucial for this award.

The impressively high standards across the board of the short film Two For The Road, written and directed by Lochlainn McKenna, are reflected by the two awards here – for McKenna himself and for Joe Robbins as composer. The film and its talents stood out amidst a rich list of young Irish voices on display this year and we do hope the Discovery Award will help both director and composer along the way, as well as Pediment’s production designer Aoife Fealy, whose work spoke volumes in the film and fleshed out the story visually. We would like to congratulate all the nominees and the three awardees whose work shone.”


Best Documentary this year was awarded to Lina Soulem’s Bye Bye Tiberias, a beautifully crafted, honest, documentary that captured the judges’ hearts. “It is a love letter to the filmmaker’s family across generations and a touching look at the immigrant’s experience of coming home. Congratulations to Lina Soulem on this exceptional film.”

Honourable Mention was given to Ross Killeen’s Don’t Forget to Remember,  “This documentary took us on an extraordinary visual and sonic journey. Ross Killeen managed to portray a family dealing with Alzheimers truthfully, while also maintaining the dignity of the person behind the disease. This film was a celebration of life, memory, art and love.”


Tj O’Grady-Peyton’s Room Taken picked up the Sue Bruce Smith Best Irish Short Award, the story of Isaac, a homeless man new to Ireland, and Victoria, a blind elderly woman whose home Isaac discretely takes up residence in. Speaking on the shortlist, one of the judges described the selection as “One of the most impressive line-up of shorts winners in recent memory. The future of film-making is in good hands.


The ICCL Human Rights Award was awarded to Bye Bye Tiberias. Commenting on their choice, the jury said,  “Bye Bye Tiberias is a beautiful, tender film rooted in human experience and place. This story of exile and return speaks to the importance of home, and of familial and cultural heritage. In this current moment, as so many of us empathise with the experiences of the men, women and children living in Gaza and Palestine, we found its message of hope and its beautiful portrayal of Palestine inspiring. We are delighted to award the 2024 ICCL Human Rights in Film Award to Bye Bye Tiberias.”