CIFF@Home - John McGahern: A Private World

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Solas Nua’s CIFF@Home with NYU DC Dialogues presents Pat Collins' Documentary JOHN MCGAHERN: A PRIVATE WORLD

This online event includes the streaming of the 2005 award-winning documentary which inspired Pat Collins' adaptation of John McGahern's final novel THAT THEY MAY FACE THE RISING SUN, which has its North American Premiere on Sunday March 3rd at CIFF2024. This event includes a pre-recorded conversation between acclaimed director Pat Collins and Solas Nua's Capital Irish Film Festival Director, Maedhbh Mc Cullagh. 

Registration is required in order to view both the film and conversation. Once you register, the event will be available to watch through Wednesday, February 28.

John McGahern: A Private World

2023 | Documentary | Runtime: 54 minutes | English

Winner of Best Documentary Award - Irish Film & Television Awards 2005.

On March 30th 2006, after a life-time of dedication to his art, John McGahern, one of Ireland’s most distinguished writers, sadly passed away after a long illness. Since the publication of his first book in 1963, John McGahern was at the cultural heart of Irish life. He was in the happy position of being universally praised by the critics and equally loved by the reading public. John McGahern: A Private World was filmed in 2004 just prior to the publication of his memoirs and these memoirs form the backbone of the documentary. Through intimate interviews, a strong and compelling sense of the man emerges, offering a rare insight into the creative process.  

Credits: Directed by Pat Collins; Produced by Philip King; Edited by Isobel Stephenson; Camera by Donal Gilligan, Sound Design by Eamon Little

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Pat Collins is a maker of extraordinary documentary, feature, and experimental art films. Over the last 25 years, he has made more than 30 films. His film The Dance received its world premiere at the BFI London Film Festival 2021 and was the Gala Screening at Cork Film Festival 2021. Previous feature documentary Henry GlassieFieldwork premiered at TIFF in 2019. His new feature film ‘That They May Face the Rising Sun' based on the novel by John McGahern receives its world premiere at London International Film Festival 2023.

His feature film ‘Song of Granite’, funded by the Irish Film Board, BAI, SODEC and Telefilm Canada, was based on the life of the traditional Irish singer Joe Heaney. It received its world premiere at SXSW 2017 and was released in cinemas by Oscilloscope Distribution in the USA, Thunderbird Releasing in the UK and Canada, and Wildcard Distribution in Ireland. ‘Song of Granite’ was the Irish nomination for best Foreign Language Oscar 2018. Fionnuala Halligan, Chief Film Critic of ‘Screen International’ wrote “In an era of safe film-making, especially within the art-house sector, it’s rare to view a title as formally audacious as ‘Song of Granite’.”  

His 2012 feature film ‘Silence’ received its international premier at London International Film Festival in 2013 and was distributed in Irish cinemas by Element Distribution and New Wave Films in the UK. He was co-director of the historical 3 part series ‘1916’. The series was broadcast on RTÉ, BBC and PBS in America.  In 2012, the Irish Film Institute curated a mid-career retrospective of his work to date. saying “…Viewed together, these fascinating screenworks offer a unique snapshot of Ireland at the turn of the 21st century.” The Irish Times listed ‘Silence’ and ‘Song of Granite’ in the top twenty ‘Best Irish films of all time’.

He has made films on the writer John McGahern, the poets Michael Hartnett and Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, the singer Thomas McCarthy and the Connemara based writer and cartographer Tim Robinson. ‘Abbas Kiarostami – The Art of Living’ (co-directed with Fergus Daly) was picked up for international distribution in 2004 by MK2. He has directed political feature essay films ‘What We Leave in Our Wake’ (2009) and ‘Living in a Coded Land’ (2014) and his short experimental work has screened at numerous Irish and international film festivals, and many galleries including the ICA London, Galway Arts Festival, The Visual Carlow and Crawford Art Gallery.

Pat Collins headshot


Hand-picked by Solas Nua's Capital Irish Film Festival, CIFF@Home with NYU DC Dialogues is a bi-monthly, curated series of Irish film. 

This is a free screening series - donate what you can to help Solas Nua bring you quality Irish film programming and provocative discussion.

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