Acclaimed for Nenagh student film

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Niamh Magee of Nenagh is the writer and director of the film.

Awards and nominations for Niamh’s work

A postgraduate student from Nenagh has written and directed a film which is receiving great recognition on the national and international film circuit.

Niamh Magee is part of a team of film and television students at Dundalk Institute of Technology responsible for the phenomenal success of ‘High Society’, a short created last year by the third-year film and television production class. from the Dundalk Institute of Technology.

The film, made as part of the students’ Film Project module, is doing very well on the film festival circuit at home and abroad following its recent nomination for the Royal Television Society Student Award in the drama section.

The film recently won Best Cinematography at the Best Istanbul Film Festival, as well as being nominated for Best Director and Best Music at the Screen Power Film Festival in the UK.

Additionally, it was selected as a Monthly Pick at the Rome Prisma Independent Film Awards and was part of the Official Selection for the Dublin University Film Festival. It was nominated for Best Film at the First Frame Dublin International Film Festival and Best Drama at the Royal Television Society Awards.

Niamh Magee has a strong relationship with Nenagh, being a granddaughter of the late Sean and Una Butler of MacDonagh Street and a daughter of Jacqueline (née Butler) Magee of Coille Bheithe.

Niamh, whose late US-born father John Magee was also a writer, wrote and directed the film which was shot over six days in multiple locations in County Louth under strict Covid filming protocols in spring 2021 .

The students overcame tremendous challenges throughout the production of the film, as all development and pre-production was done remotely while post-production was completed through a mix of on-campus and from a distance.

“High Society” follows the character, Leah, who feeds viewers her inner poetic thoughts as they follow his story of being doped and then getting his girlfriend to seek revenge on the dealer who started this commotion.

The film has been described as a shocking drama that depicts the lives of young people living without borders and dealing with themes of love and immaturity.

This is Niamh’s directorial debut and it’s no coincidence that as a screenwriter she is following in her late father’s footsteps as a writer. Drawing inspiration from Gaspar Noé and Nick Cave, she aimed to create a surreal and atmospheric world told through rhythmic narratives that expose modern-day self-destruction.

“Inspired by cinematographer Marcell Rév, we set out to create something visually intriguing by working with what we had on our small budget,” Niamh revealed.

She added: “As a team, we found the perfect dynamic working together because we all put so much effort into it…our work ethic never seemed to diminish.”

On behalf of the film crew, Niamh thanked everyone who donated to help fund the film and the talks at DkIT, Eamonn Crudden and Sarah McCann, who offered advice along the way.

Since the end, Niamh has continued to write and direct a student pilot for a television series, titled “Benighted Entries”.

This work focuses on a mysterious burrow at the foot of a hawthorn tree. After years of delusions after crawling in it, a military team is sent to investigate this paranormal finding.

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