Leitrim County Council has committed €10,000 in funding over two years to a proposed film on the life of one of the leaders of the 1916 Rising, Sean MacDiarmada.
Producer and Director, Kevin McCann has secured second stage funding of up to £40,000 (STG) from Northern Ireland Screen and had been seeking match funding from Leitrim County Council.
In 2012 the Council awarded the project €1,000 and, at a meeting of the Council last Friday to discuss the County Development Plan, it was announced that the Local Authority had approved funding of €5,000 this year and a further €5,000 next year for the unique film project.
Cllr Sean McDermott, who had appealed at a number of Council meetings for support for this film, told the Leitrim Observer that he was delighted that Leitrim County Council has committed funding for the project.
He pointed out that this film will be one of the first to emerge on 1916 and certainly will be the first to focus on Sean MacDiarmada, one of the leaders of the Rising, a signatory of the proclamation of Independence and, most importantly, a proud Co Leitrim man.
“I believe this will put Leitrim in the spotlight and will put the county on the map nationally and internationally,” said Cllr McDermott adding that he believed the potential financial benefit to Co Leitrim could be enormous.
The Fine Gael councillor said that he had spoken with Mr McCann previously about the film and the producer/director had indicated that he hoped to be able to involve local actors in this project.
“This would be a wonderful thing for those living locally,” pointed out Cllr McDermott.
“I understand this is the first motion picture to be proposed on 1916 and I don’t believe that any other film will be proposed and made in the time frame available up to 2016, so it was vital that we (Leitrim County Council) support this project.
“There is also the prospect that much of this film could be shot in our county as we saw recently with Jimmy’s Hall. So the benefits for our county, both financially and as a means of promoting the county as a tourism destination, could be enormous,” he concluded wishing Mr McCann further success in his bid to secure additional funding for the project.