We have announced a selection of our awards for Dublin International film Festival 2024: Discovery Awards, Short Film and Documentary category winners, as well as the Irish Council of Civil Liberties (ICCL) Human Rights Film Award.

Over the Festival’s more than two-decade history a very important and defining ethos has been the celebration and recognition of both new and established industry talent, the creative lifeblood that assures its future.

Prior to the awards, Amy Huberman, Irish Actor, Writer and Tanqueray Brand Ambassador, hosted a discussion with the Discovery Award nominees as part of the Tanqueray 0.0% Film Club, a panel of extremely talented Directors, Writers, Composers, Actors and Producers. 

The Festival is thrilled to announce the recipients as follows:

Discovery Award

The Irish film industry has never been busier. Productions both large and small are reaching wider audiences, and there is an abundance of talent working in the film sector today. Celebrating our thriving industry, 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.

The Judging panel was comprised of Mark O’Brien, Executive Director and Co-Director of the Abbey Theatre, Emma Norton, Producer at Element Pictures, and Finn Halligan, Screen International’s Executive Editor. 

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.” 

Documentary Award

The jury for the Documentary section was Jean Rice, Chair of Film & Television at the National Film School, IADT, Producer Mark Adams (Cannes Uncut), Director Claire Dix (Sunlight), and Programmer Dave Kelly. 

Best Documentary this year was awarded to Lina Soulem’s Bye Bye Tiberiasa 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.”

Short Film Awards

The short film awards, judged by RTÉ’s Michael Doherty, Irish actor Carrie Crowley, director and writer Juanita Wilson, and Filipino-Irish screenwriter and director Nell Hensey, went to a diverse selection of titles.

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.”

Tj O’Grady-Peyton’s Room Taken picked up the award for Best Irish Fiction, the story of Isaac, a homeless man new to Ireland, and Victoria, a blind elderly woman whose home Isaac discretely takes up residence in. 

Best Irish Documentary went to Dennis Harvey’s The Building and Burning of a Refugee Campa film about three men seeking sanctuary in Ireland who find themselves caught on the streets between a hostile asylum policy and an increasingly militant far-right.

The judges picked Ross Killeen’s ‘Don’t Forget To Remember’ for honourable mention. “It is a pleasure to award Don’t Forget to Remember this honourable mention. 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.”

The Swiss short 7 Fois, directed by Christine Wiederkehr, picked up the award for Best International Fiction, the story of young Elio being left in the home of his tutor when an unexpected visitor’s presence highlights some unforeseen and disturbing truths.

Midnight Rising the London documentary which shows an intimate portrait of London’s East and South East Asian clubbing community picked up the award for Best International Documentary. Directed by Aileen Ye, this world-within-a-world is instantly familiar, filled with ambitions, desires, and yearnings that reflect the joy and resistance of today.

The judges picked three honourable mentions for the shorts including Lochlainn Mckenna’s Two For the Road as the Irish honourable mention, Before Madrid and In the Waiting Room as International honourable mentions.

Speaking about the awards the judges said, “It was fascinating to view such a range of films, both Irish and International, and then to chew the cud with the other members of the judging panel to decide on the winners.  The documentary category was very straightforward, and we had all chosen exactly the same winners. Fiction led to more discussion, but I think we can very happily stand over the winning films there too.”

ICCL Human Rights Award

The ICCL Human Rights Award jury consisted of Dr Marie-Luce Paris of the UCD Centre for Human Rights, journalist and author Una Mullally, Executive Director of ShoutOut, Ruadhán Ó Críodáin, and Ala Buisir, visual artist, founder of Gorm Media and board member of Amal Women’s Association. The jury selected Bye Bye Tiberias as the winner of the ICCL Human Rights Award.

Speaking about their decision, 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.

Bye Bye Tiberias is a small and humble film – but don’t be deceived. Behind its homemade aesthetic is a masterful documentary. And its very smallness and humility preserve the humanity of the people whose stories are told. Relationships are portrayed in all their complexity and moments of levity only make the film’s emotional impact stronger. Although it is firmly rooted in place and in the landscape of Palestine, this film depicts universal themes of a person’s struggle to escape circumstances. 

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.”

We’re continuing our celebration of Irish and world cinema until March 2nd with a packed programme of in-cinema screenings, Q&As, and industry events.