This year’s theme, ‘Gealladh’ (Promise/Vow) inspired an array of new ideas and stories from filmmakers, meaning the judges had a difficult yet exciting task.
The jury panels comprised of a variety of BBC ALBA and freelance industry professionals, including Actor and Director Tony Kearney, TV Presenter Linda MacLeod, as well as BBC ALBA’s Head of Service Margaret Mary Murray.
Margaret Mary said: “It was a real pleasure judging this year’s FilmG categories and to see the next crop of film-making talent coming through. It is extremely important and very encouraging for the future of the Gaelic media industry.”
In the Youth category, schools in the Highlands are well represented with Portree, Plockton, Mallaig, Milburn and Ardnamurchan all being shortlisted. Most notable is Lochaber High School’s film ‘An Agallamh’, about a school boy who self-harms, which has been shortlisted for ‘Best Film’ as well as the lead actor, Fergus Munro, being shortlisted for his convincing performance.
As ever, schools in the Western Isles have done extremely well with two films, ‘An Gealladh Meallta’ by Castlebay High School and ‘Gealladh Gemma’ by the Nicolson Institute both making the Best Film shortlist.
The South of Scotland have also fared well on the Youth Shortlist. Glasgow Gaelic School have two films in the running; ‘Gealladh a Phìobaire’ and ‘Banais ann am Bùrach’. A film by Grange Academy in Kilmarnock has been shortlisted for both the Theme Award as well as the lead actress, Helen Frater, being shortlisted for her performance.
It wasn’t just school pupils who showed their talent for filmmaking, however. The Open category, which is for aspiring filmmakers over the age of seventeen and community groups, also included some real gems. The shortlist for the Best Community Film was dominated by films from the Highlands and Islands, two of which, ‘Siuthad a’ Sheònaid’ and ‘Madainn Mhath Breatainn’ have also been shortlisted for other awards.
These films were not alone in being shortlisted multiple times. John Murdo MacAulay from the Isle of Lewis had his film ‘Briste’ shortlisted for ‘Best Drama’, the FilmG Theme Award as well as two of the film’s actors, Ellen MacDonald and Erica Morrison, up for Best Performance. ‘Sgeulachd a Bhana Bhlasta’ by Ishbel Strachan from the Isle of Skye was also shortlisted for the Best Documentary and for the FilmG Theme Award.
All the shortlists are now available to view online, and the winners will be announced at another fantastic awards ceremony at the Old Fruitmarket in Glasgow on the 27th of March. Keep an eye out on facebook and Twitter for news of tickets!