Contributed by Seán Lucey
On December 2nd the Irish Film Institute premiered two DVDs released this year, Irish Destiny and Seoda. Irish Destiny is a feature length film set during the war of independence and was originally screened in 1926 to mark the tenth anniversary of the 1916 rising. The film was thought lost until found in the Washington Library of Congress in the early 1990s. It was restored by the Irish Film Archive who commissioned the renowned pianist, Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin, to compose a full score for it. Ó Súilleabháin was present at the premiere and not only introduced the film but also played the music live to the film for the opening twenty minutes.
Unsurprisingly, Irish Destiny is full of historical resonance. Filmed in Dublin, Wicklow and Shephard’s Bush, London, it re-enacted famous events during the troubles such as the burning of the Custom House. The film was the brainchild of a Dublin G.P. named Isaac Eppel who was also a theatre impresario and cinema owner. Actual members of the IRA were cast in the film and a former Dublin IRA leader, Kit O’Malley, was enrolled as military advisor to production. Read More