Irish Film Institute -IFI Family Festival returns June 24th – 26th with some amazing film adventures from all over the world  

IFI Family Festival returns June 24th – 26th with some amazing film adventures from all over the world  

IFI Press Release: May 19th, 2016

The IFI Family Festival returns June 24th – 26th with some amazing film adventures from all over the world, wildlife fun with a real-life Golden Eagle, creative workshops, lively activities and even a pop-up Shakespearean corner!

fam fest 2

The IFI throws its doors open once again to children aged 4 to 12 with the annual IFI Family Festival, at the slightly earlier dates of June 24th – 26th. Along with three days of films from around the world – almost all Irish premieres – there’s a chance to meet a beautiful Golden Eagle, crack some mysterious codes, create fanzines, have a hoedown in Meeting House Square with the schools’ screening, meet the makers of Zig and Zag and find out some exciting facts about the Bard!

Alicia McGivern, Head of IFI Education, said: “After a very successful year of screenings and workshops for schools, we are delighted to once again open the IFI up to our youngest film fans and their families. Whether you like stories that make you laugh, cry, think or puzzle, we have something for you.”

The Festival takes flight on Friday, June 24th when RTÉjr’s Clara Murray will be joined by Tommy Byrne, chief falconer at the National Bird of Prey Centre in Wicklow, who will demonstrate his magnificent Golden Eagle – the National Geographic star, James – in Meeting House Square along with some flight-tastic activities before the screening of the opening film, Brothers of the Wind! Keeping with the Festival’s theme of flight, this breath-taking opening film is the story of a hunter’s son, Lukas, who rescues an eagle chick who he teaches how to feed and fly.

Saturday’s activities kick off with two sets of Short Tales featuring short animated and live action films from around the world. In Short Tales 1 (11am, Age 4+), there will be stories about cool cats, talking mushrooms, and bright ideas, making this essential viewing for younger Festival viewers. For older children, the stories of Nina, Jonas, Eleanor and others will take them on a rollercoaster expedition, visiting the underwater world, joining a sleepover, or going on a fantastical journey, including one from Irish filmmaker Kate Dolan , Little Doll, in Short Tales 2 (1pm, Age 8+).

For young book lovers there is a heart-warming tale adapted from the first novel in Andreas Steinhöfel’s best-selling trilogy, The Pasta Detectives (Rico, Oskar und die Tieferschatten, June 25th, 4pm, Age 6+), and readers can take part in a mini Festival book club after the film. Presented in co-operation with the Goethe-Institut Irland.

Cracking codes and problem solving is the name of the game in Code M (June 25th, 6.30pm, Age 10+), a modern-day mystery through the caves and castles of Denmark following 12-year-old Isabel and her companions as they look for the long-lost sword of D’Artagnan the musketeer. Before the screening, children will have a chance to try cracking codes and solving conundrums of their own in a free foyer activity!

This year celebrates William Shakespeare’s 400th anniversary and to mark this the Festival is bringing Simba the lion cub back to the big screen in the classic animation, The Lion King (June 26th, 11am), which was inspired by one of his best-known plays, Hamlet. Join RTÉjr’s Clara Murray before the film, sing along with some of the hits, and find out exciting Shakespeare facts in the pop-up Shakespeare corner. Part of British Council’s Shakespeare Lives programme celebrating Shakespeare’s work in 2016.

Zig and Zag are the weird and wacky brothers from Planet Zog who can’t keep out of trouble! Not only will RTÉjr’s favourite alien duo appear on the big screen in several episodes in the Zig and Zag Special (June 26th, 2pm, Age 6+) – fans can also make a Zig and Zag mask and meet producer Ronan McCabe and director Niall Mooney who will tell all about the zany pair!

All the way from India, Rainbow (Dhanak, June 26th, 4pm, Age 8+) is a stunning film in which Pari has promised her blind brother Chotu that she’ll help get his eyesight back before he is ten. One day she spots her favourite Bollywood star, Shah Rukh Khan, on an eye-donation poster. Convinced he will cure her brother, the orphaned siblings set off to meet him on a fairy-tale-like journey across Rajasthan, full of laughter, music, singing and new friendships.

Extending the IFI Schools programme into the Festival for the first time, Little Grey Fergie: Country Fun (June 24th, 10.15am, Age 5+) – filmed in Co. Wicklow – is about a city boy, Gustav, who meets Fergie, a living, thinking, feeling tractor, and together with all their friends on the farm they get ready to enter the Village Fête. Before the screening, film goers can grab their Stetsons for a country hoedown in Meeting House Square!

The Festival is never complete without some exciting workshops and this year children can flex their creative muscles with fanzines and screenwriting. On Saturday (11am – 2pm, Age: 7-9), with Film Fanzines, artist and designer Sarah Bracken will demonstrate the wonderful world of fanzines in a unique and creative workshop. On Sunday, (11am – 2pm, Age: 9-12), in Screen Magic, writer and co-director of Big Smoke Writing Factory, Claire Hennessy will encourage participants to think about story, character and dialogue and develop a short script of their own, updating one of Shakespeare’s stories for a modern audience in this fun and practical workshop. Part of British Council’s Shakespeare Lives programme celebrating Shakespeare’s work in 2016.


This year, once again the IFI Family Festival will tour highlights to Riverbank Arts Centre, Newbridge, July 2nd-3rd in conjunction with access>CINEMA. For more information and to book tickets, see


IFI Family Festival Tickets:

All Films: €5 (includes opening night event); Family Ticket (film events): €15.00 (2 adults, 2 children).

IFI Box Office: 01 679 3477/

Booking for Little Grey Fergie through IFI Education on 01 612 9445 / 01 612 9436 or


Workshops Tickets:

Film Fanzines: Tickets €12.00; Max. 15 participants

Screen Magic: Tickets: €15.00, Max. 15 participants

Workshop Bookings: 01 612 9445 / 01 612 9436. Booking is essential as places are limited.




Foyer Flights – 5.30pm-6.30pm

Brothers of the Wind (Age 7+) – 6.30pm

Schools’ Screening: Little Grey Fergie: Country Fun (Age 5+) – 10.15am



Short Tales 1 (Age 4+) – 11am

Short Tales 2 (Age 8+) – 1pm

The Pasta Detectives (Age 6+) – 4pm

Code M (Age 10+) – 6.30pm



Family Shakespeare – The Lion King & Pop-Up (Cert G) – 11am

Zig and Zag Special (Age 6+) – 2pm

Rainbow (Age 8+) – 4pm




Film Fanzines (Age 7-9) – 11am-2pm


Screen Magic (Age 9-12) – 11am-2pm


The IFI Family Festival is supported by British Council, Shakespeare Lives in 2016 and Goethe-Institut Irland.


For more information, interview requests and high-res images, please contact Deirdre O’Reilly at the IFI Press Office (01 679 5744 or Full details of the IFI Family Festival are available at www.ifi.ife/familyfest


The IFI acknowledges the financial support of the Arts Council.

The IFI is supported
by The Arts Council

Arts Council of Ireland