Di­rec­tor picks up the pace

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - News -

Ir­ish mu­sic videos and com­mer­cials di­rec­tor Richie Smyth is set to make his fea­ture film de­but with a New York thriller star­ring Chan­ning Ta­tum from Stop-Loss and the Step Up movies. The film, which is as yet un­ti­tled, will re­volve around park­our, the ex­treme sport of free run­ning and jump­ing pop­u­larised in the ex­hil­a­rat­ing French thriller District 13 and promi­nently fea­tured in the open­ing se­quence of Casino Royale.

Smyth, who has di­rected mu­sic videos for U2, The Verve and The Corrs, is an avid ex­treme-sports prac­ti­tioner. To pur­sue dis­cus­sions on his fea­ture film, Smyth re­port­edly had to can­cel his plans to leap from a he­li­copter on to a moun­tain­top in Alaska and to snow­board to the bot­tom.

En­nio makes mu­sic in Belfast

Gifted Ital­ian film com­poser En­nio Mor­ri­cone will con­duct a pro­gramme of his scores at the Water­front Hall in Belfast on Oc­to­ber 17th and 18th. The event, which opens the an­nual Belfast Fes­ti­val at Queen’s, marks Mor­ri­cone’s con­cert de­but in Ire­land and will fea­ture more than 100 mu­si­cians from the Rome Sin­foni­etta Or­ches­tra and the Belfast Phil­har­monic Choir.

The mae­stro, who turns 80 in Novem­ber, has com­posed the mu­sic for close on 500 movies. He has been nom­i­nated for five Os­cars (without ever winning) for Days of Heaven, The Mis­sion, The Un­touch­ables, Bugsy and Malèna. He was pre­sented with an honorary Os­car last year. www.belfast­fes­ti­val. com

Street­wise writer wired for suc­cess

David Si­mon, the writer and ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer of the gritty, crit­i­cally ac­claimed TV se­ries The Wire and Homi­cide: Life on the Street, will dis­cuss his work in a pub­lic in­ter­view at the Ir­ish Film In­sti­tute in Dublin on Septem­ber 19th.

The event, which will fea­ture a screen­ing of an episode from The Wire, co­in­cides with Canon­gate’s pub­li­ca­tion in the UK and Ire­land of Si­mon’s book, Homi­cide: A Year on the Killing Streets. The book is based on Si­mon’s ex­pe­ri­ences over the year he spent with the homi­cide unit of the Bal­ti­more po­lice force, which led to his cre­ation of The Wire. www.irish­film.ie

Ir­ish shorts for Lithua­nia, Greece

Net­work Ire­land Tele­vi­sion, a Dublin-based dis­tri­bu­tion com­pany and spe­cial­ist in mar­ket­ing short films, in as­so­ci­a­tion with the Ir­ish Film Archive, has cu­rated two ret­ro­spec­tive pro­grammes of Ir­ish short films to be shown at Euro­pean film fes­ti­vals next month: 10 shorts at the Tin­klai Film Fes­ti­val in Vil­nius, Lithua­nia and 16 at the Drama Film Fes­ti­val in Greece. Films to be screened in­clude such gems as Thirty Five Aside, The Sound of Peo­ple, Yu Ming Is Ainm Dom, The Wed­nes­days, New Boy

Badly Drawn Roy.

Port­man calls the shots

“What I re­ally want to do is di­rect” has be­come a com­mon re­frain among ac­tors. Join­ing their ranks is Natalie Port­man, whose first out­ing in the di­rec­tor’s chair, Eve, has its world pre­miere at the Venice Film Fes­ti­val next Mon­day night. The short film fea­tures Ben Gaz­zara and Lauren Ba­call in what Port­man de­scribes as “a civilised com­edy of amorous dal­liances among the older gen­er­a­tion.”

Port­man will be seen next in Jim Sheri­dan’s US re­make of the Dan­ish drama Broth­ers, in which she stars with Jake Gyl­len­haal and Tobey Maguire. md­wyer@ir­ish-times.ie

David Si­mon, cre­ator of the ac­claimed TV se­ries The Wire (above), will speak at the IFI

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