It was a joy to curate the Short Horror Film Programme for Fright-Ful Friday at Leap Castle, an annual event run by the Offline Film Festival in County Offaly. This sold out evening of all things spooky and fantastical took our large group, by bus, from outside the very hospitable Ormond Clubhouse, Emmet Square, Birr, and onward to Giltrap’s Pub in Kinnitty for prosecco and finger food. Then back on the bus for a moonlit journey to Leap Castle for the screening of the short horror films — well received by a lovely, enthusiastic audience.
Horror has very different meanings for fans of the genre – from gothic to grotesque, psychological, visceral and even humour. For this programme, I attempted to include a variety of those emotive experiences, and am also proud to say that all the films are from talented men and women currently working in Irish film. There were 7 films in total.
Written and directed by Rik Gordon. Rik has also written and directed Pigman and most recently, Pure Gold, doing well on the festival circuit.
Written and directed by Jannine Benkhardt. Jannine was also assistant director on The Switch, a short film currently screening at festivals.
Written and directed by Evin O’Neill. Evin has also written and directed the short films, Digs for Pennies, Spooks, A Dry Christmas and Invisible.
Written and directed by Zoe Kavanagh. Zoe also directs music videos and is the writer and director of the short film Tides, and the award-winning feature, Demon Hunter.
Mother Father Monster
Written and directed by Sean Breathnach, and funded by Offaly County Council Arts Office and filmed in Charleville Castle. Sean has directed several short films and his debut feature film “Beyond the Woods” was released to critical acclaim.
Written and directed by Helen Flanagan. Helen has directed short films including Away with the Fairies and The Drive. She also writes performance pieces and facilitate creative workshops with, as she says herself, a suspiciously witchy vibe.
How Olin Lost His Eye
Written and directed by Damian McCarthy. Damian has directed several short horror films and is currently in post on his first feature, also a horror.
To round off the evening, the owner of this haunting and magical place, Sean Ryan, regaled us with tunes and stories of the spirits that roam the castle corridors. Then, back on the bus to The Chestnut Bar for great chats, and even a complimentary drink! What more could you possible ask for. Frightful and Delightful!