FilmG Awards 2020

Another succesful awards ceremony was had at The Old Fruitmarket this year, with filmmakers from across the nation picking up a coveted FilmG trophy infront of hundreds of Gaelics creative stars. Filmmakers of all ages managed to secure themselves one of the 18 prizes up for grabs.

AN DRÀSTA! (RIGHT NOW!), made by Urras Oighreachd Ghabhsainn, highlighting the effects of climate change on the Scottish islands has picked up the Film Dùthchais (Community) award at this year’s awards ceremony in Glasgow.

Meabh NicChoinnich from South Uist, who stars in the film, was also shortlisted in the Best Performance category, but on the night the £200 prize went to joint winners, Euan MacDonald and Lachlan Peel, both from Edinburgh, for their performance in Lachlan’s film, Àrdan is Aineaolas: Soidhnichean. Lachlan, a winner in last year’s competition, was also nominated in the Best Film and Best Student Film categories for his film, which takes a light hearted look at why the general public seem to get so upset by Gaelic signage.

The title of Best Film went to Shannon NicIlleathain of Tobermory, who scooped the £1,000 prize with her delightful documentary, Seònaid, which looks at the life of Janet MacDonald,who has spent her life supporting the Gaelic language on Mull. Shannon had also received a nomination in the Film Dùthchais as Fheàrr category.

Best Student Film, and the £1000 prize, was won by Joseph Flower of Dunbar for his film Sgiùradh, based on the traditional folk tale of the washer woman, but with a twist. Joseph himself doesn’t speak Gaelic, but his sister Izzy does, and she was nominated in the Best Performance category for her role in the film.

The Best Industry Director award went to Hamish MacLeòid of Glasgow for his spectacular climbing documentary, Aig an Oir, filmed on a rocky Ayrshire crag, the use of drone footage brilliantly showing the scale of the climb. Hamish’s film was also nominated in the Best Film category, but his Best Industry Director prize sees him win £2,500 to spend on equipment.

Winning a television production placement in the Highlands through HIE is Mara Drysdale of Lochcarron, after picking up the award for Most Promising Director. Her documentary Gualainn ri Gualainn traces the history of the Lochcarron shinty team and its importance within the community.

Best Mobile Short was won by last year’s winner of the same award, Eilidh NicIain from Dingwall, for her psychologically disturbing film Smuaintean an Diabhail, in which we see a young woman journey from sane to psychotic over the course of the film. Eilidh was also nominated for Best Performance for her own role in the film, and wins a placement on BBC’s The Social as her prize.

The only film to pick up two awards in this year’s competition featured in the Youth category and was made by Anndra Cuimeanach of Gairloch. Siùbhal gu Sear sees Anndra travel the breadth of Scotland on two wheels within a day, and was the recipient of Best Documentary and the Gaelic Award for Fluent Speakers. This year’s award for Best Film in the Youth category was picked up by Culloden Academy in Inverness, for their surreal comedy, Eilean nam Muc, following one farmer’s attempts to produce a more humane black pudding.

Ardnamurchan High School in Acharacle, were the recipients of two awards for their two films in this year’s competition. The school received four nominations in total, but were the very worthy recipients of the FilmG International Representative award for their film Reòite, and the Gaelic Award for Learners for their film An Cuach, na h-Iuchraichean agus an Dron.

This year’s Best Young Filmmaker was Alice Gordon of Glasgow, with her cleverly made film An Losgann agus An Sgairp, which takes viewers on a thought-provoking journey into the darker side of vlogging. Alice was also nominated for Best Performance for her part in Sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu’s (Glasgow Gaelic School)’s film Ar Solas.

And fellow Sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu (Glasgow Gaelic School) pupil, Conor Galbraith, picked up the award for Best Performance for his entertaining portrayal of Detective John Reid in the school’s who-dun-nit police drama, Fo Chasaid Muirt. The award for Best Production was won by Plockton High School in Wester Ross for theirhigh crime drama, An Corp, which sees murder and suspicion on the west coast.

Isle of Lewis school, Sgoil an Rubha’s film Cuairt Cuimhe took home the award for Best Youth Group Film for their heartfelt story of how we can learn and support each other across the generations.

This year’s hotly contested People’s Choice award went to Staffin Primary School in Skye, who mounted a robust social media campaign to garner an impressive 1210 votes to come out on top. Their tongue-in-cheek tourism infomercial, Fàilte don Eilean, takes a practical but entertaining approach to advising tourists on how to behave when visiting the island.nPresenting the award was the Minister for Public Finance and Digital Economy, Kate Forbes MSP, who said;

“It was great to attend the FilmG awards, an evening which showcased the great wealth of talent out there and which celebrates Gaelic storytelling and media skills. It was my pleasure to present the People’s Choice award to Staffin Primary School for their highly entertaining and original take on tourist advice.”

A programme with highlights of the FilmG 2020 awards ceremony at The Old Fruitmarket in Glasgow airs on BBC Alba on Friday, February 21 st at 9.30pm.