Little Cinema/ Galway City of Film 48 Hour Challenge 2023 Teams, Films & Winners!

48 Hour Challenge
48 Hour Challenge

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  • . 48 Hour Challenge
  • Event
  • galway city of film
  • Little Cinema


The Little Cinema & Galway City of Film 48 Hour Challenge 2023 celebrated its seventh year on the August Bank Holiday weekend in Galway with another amazing screening of films made in the city and county in just 48 Hours. When applications opened for the Challenge in July, the 10 team spaces were snapped up in just over one day!  

“We look forward to the Little Cinema 48hr challenge every year! We use it as both a testing ground to keep our skills sharp, try some new techniques but to also have a fun challenge and finally a great excuse to spend 48 hours laughing and collaborating with friends!“ – Team Feedback 2023 

The Challenge launch was held in the Portershed a Dó on the 3rd of August. All teams attended the Launch and it was then that they found out the criteria which had to be incorporated into their films.  

Each team was given the genre options of a Romance or Neo-Noir genre, which had to include the line “It would have been a good idea, but…”, incorporating a specific shot (Extreme Close Up), with the film based around an assigned prop (brought in by another team and randomly allocated at the Launch).  Teams could sign in from 8.30am on Friday 4th August and begin work on shooting their films at 9am.  

“It’s a great opportunity for filmmakers or people who want become filmmakers to test their skills in a restricted time period.” – Team Feedback 2023 

The teams were supported throughout the weekend by Kenny Gaughan (Little Cinema Co-Founder) based at the Portershed, and teams were visited by the social media team of Brigid Vinnell, Felix Ferguson and Chloe Richardson, who took photos and videos of the behind the scenes, edited together by Matthew Blayney. The films created had to be submitted by 10am on Sunday 6th August.  

Filmmakers met at the Town Hall Theatre for a 4 Star Pizza reception at 5pm ahead of the doors opening to be public at 6pm for the screening at 7pm. 

The judges for the Challenge were film editor John Murphy (An Cailín Ciúin, North Circular), content editor Roisín Ní Thuairisg (BLOC TG4), composer Steve Lynch (Obituary, Wreck), and actress Tara Breathnach (Detainment, Suffragettes with Luch Worsley) who awarded prizes for Best Prop, Best Line, Best Music Score, Best Editing, Best Special FX, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Writing, Best Cinematography, and Best Film. The audience then voted for the Audience Award.  

The Best Film will go forward to earn a place on the Shorts Programme at the Galway Film Fleadh 2024.  

The annual Galway City of Film programme is managed by Ardán and supported by Galway City Council, Galway County Council, and the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport & Media. Thanks also to TG4, Unbound Media, and Campus Living for their ongoing support of the Challenge!  

“The 48 Hour Challenge provides an amazing platform for filmmakers to push their creativity and efficiency to a new level. Seeing your film that you put together in just 48 hours on the big screen is a surreal experience.” – Team Feedback 2023  

Team B-Unit   

Captained by Noel Meaney, using a prop of an immersion timer, Team B-Unit created the short neo-noir film Immersion, investigating gender norms in society. 

Team Bosca Rónta   

Captained by Samuel Acheson, Team Bosca Rónta received a lock picking kit as prop of choice, and they created the short neo-noir film on the theme gaslighting in Picked Apart. 

Team Tréimshe   

Captained by Georgia Lee, Team Tréimshe was given the single white flip flop as a prop, and they made the short film Oat Flat White, a romcom about romance later in life. 

Team ATU Collective 

Captained by Baz Roland, Team ATU Collective created the romcom Amanda’s Troubling Universe with the prop – Best Promo Video Award from University of Galway. 

Team Era Gwan So   

Captained by Oisin Mac Coille, Team Era Gwan So received a scary clown mask prop which they worked into the neo-noir hitman short in DUAE. 

Team Celtic Badger Media   

Captained by Barry Fahy, Team Celtic Badger were given a Saddam Hussein trading card as a prop at random, and they went all in on the neo-noir genre to create the short film, Ally 

Team Mairtín’s Tail  

Captained by Paul D’Eath, Team Mairtín’s Tail created the short film Ballast with a clown nose as the prop at a birthday party gone wrong for their neo-noir. 

Team AllSorts  

Captained by Sarah Fahy, Team AllSorts were given a cow fridge magnet, and created the neo-noir Lactose Intolerant, about a magnet that comes to life.


Team Stiúidio na Scéalaí   

Captained by Cormack O’Brien, Team Stiúidio na Scéalaí got the porcelain statue with a hidden knife as a prop, and they made the neo-noir set in Barna woods, Bad Reception 

Team Spatula   

Captained by Luke Ó Muireagáin, Team Spatula created a romantic tale titled A Minor Problem, using the mannequin torso as a prop, with an original score composed by Jake Morgan. 

The winners on the night were: 

  • Best Prop – Oat Flat White – Team Tréimshe 
  • Best Line – Ballast – Máirtín’s Tail 
  • Best Music Score – Ballast – Olan Monk 
  • Best Editing – Ballast – Emily Murray 
  • Best Special FX – Lactose Intolerance – Gemma Curran 
  • Best Actor – Oat Flat White – Brendan Dunlea 
  • Best Actress – Ballast – Eilish McCarthy 
  • Best Writing – A Minor Problem – John Valters Paintner  
  • Best Cinematography – Ballast – Paul D’Eath 
  • Audience Award Oat Flat White – Team Tréimshe 
  • Best Film Ballast – Máirtín’s Tail 

“The 48 hour was my first short film in 4 years it allowed me to flex some creative muscles and to try different things and push myself even though I was working to a deadline I didn’t feel the same pressure I felt in “work”. It also gave me back the bug to just bite the bullet and go do it!  

As well as all that I’ve made some fantastic new friends and collaborators and I can’t wait to see what we come up with next. Most importantly I can’t wait to do it all again roll on 48 Hours 2024, save me a spot!” – Team Feedback 2023  


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48 Hour Challenge 2023 Team Photos

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