Two GMIT film graduates selected for prestigious Berlinale Festival

Friday, February 15, 2019 Press Office
Press Release

Jessie Fisk and Sean Clancy among three Irish filmmakers selected to attend

Each year the Berlin International Film Festival selects emerging filmmaking talent from each European country to showcase rising talent. This year, three Irish Filmmakers were selected to attend Berlinale Talents: Jessie Fisk from Kildare and Sean Clancy from Leitrim who are graduates of GMIT’s Film and Documentary course, and Sile Culley.

Jessie Fisk’s first narrative feature as lead producer, ‘Song of Granite’ (2017), premiered at the prestigious festival South By Southwest in Austin Texas and was subsequently released in the US. It was Ireland’s submission for the foreign language category of the 2018 academy awards and nominated for three Irish Film and Television Awards. Jessie has now partnered with Nathalie Biancheri to form the production company, Feline Films, and their next project will be a feature film called Shadows, which will be directed by Fabio Mollo, due to shoot in May. Shadows is an Italian-Irish co-production with the prominent Italian production company Ascent Films.

Sean Clancy has directed both commercials and music videos extensively and is best known for his short film ‘Cavalier’ which he wrote and directed. His debut feature film ‘Locus of Control’ will be released later this year.

Jessie Fisk says: “Participating in Berlinale Talents is a huge honour as the programme is highly sought after. Working in this industry, let alone starting a company, can be really tough so developing a network of support amongst international peers makes the whole process a little easier.”

“I think GMIT students past and present are so lucky to be part of community that is generally a lot smaller than your average college experience. This for me was key. I felt my lecturers always had time to speak with me, to mentor me and I was even put up for my first job in the industry by Celine Curtin. I was exposed to incredible industry professionals and experts while I was there, from guest lectures to work experience opportunities. I honestly don't think I could have had a better college experience”.

Sean Clancy says: “I'm going to try and attend as many of the talks and screenings as I can as it's a great chance to meet filmmakers from all backgrounds and disciplines.”

GMIT’s Celine Curtin is delighted, but not surprised with Jessie and Sean’s success. “During the course of the three years, certain students distinguish themselves with their dedication to their craft and ambition. Great things lie ahead for them.”

The Irish candidates will join 248 others across Europe to partake in a weeklong talent development programme. Selected from 3,400 applicants, by an internal selection committee on the basis of their prior achievements, resonance and relevance of their work as well as their demonstrated and exceptional promise.

The Berlinale Talents programme will comprise of masterclasses and panels with top tier figures within the international film industry. In addition, there will be workshops, networking sessions and case studies of successful films: covering development of a project, through to distribution.

For details on GMIT’s Film & Documentary course, see:


Regina Daly
GMIT Communications Officer
GMIT, Dublin Road, Galway
Tel. 091 742826 / 087-9618355 (m)