2023 Finalists for the Ardán/ RTÉ Short Film Commission announced

Ardán RTÉ Short finalists announced 2023
Ardán RTÉ Short finalists announced 2023


  • funding
  • mentorship
  • RTÉ
  • Short Film Commission

Ardán and RTÉ are delighted to announce Remote Strutting as the recipient of the 2023 Ardán/ RTÉ Short Film Commission. We invited teams of writers, producers and directors to apply for the award of €15,000 to fund a live action 10-minute short film. 

There were 58 applications received from all over the country, and five of those projects were invited to interview in Galway. The panel of independent industry experts chose Remote Strutting as the finalist for the award. 

Remote Strutting is a heartwarming feel-good comedy that follows the journey of Mark, a young IT professional who is ready to take on the world, but he has a hidden challenge that’s preventing him from stepping out of his comfort zone and overcoming his fears. 

The team behind Remote Strutting are Writer Ruaidhrí Hallinan, Director Lorna Fitzsimons, and Producers Brian Durcan and Emer Durcan (Western Front Studios). As part of the commission, the team will receive mentorship for directing, producing, and script development. 

The Ardán/ RTÉ Short Film Commission, now in its 32nd year, also offers the opportunity for the awarded short film to be broadcast on RTÉ 2 Shortscreen and to feature on the RTÉ Player. 

Director: Lorna Fitzsimons 

Lorna is an Irish photographer and filmmaker who has completed several prestigious Screen Ireland programmes including Big Stories on the small Screen, an SI bursary to attend Cine Qua Non Lab, Mexico 2022 and she was shadow director on Irish TV series Red Rock.  

Her first micro-budget feature as writer / director, Meeting on the Stairs, toured with Barcelona Human Rights Film Festival, screened across USA, South America and North Africa. The award-winning feature Poison Pen, with Lorna as lead director, screened world-wide at festivals, on UTV television and Amazon Prime.  

During lockdown she devised and directed a community piece as part of The Abbey Theatre’s Dear Ireland project and made award winning dance and poetry film, Dance Till Dán. Most recently she has directed the short film Whale, a gripping drama, funded by Film Offaly and Bog, a dark fairytale, funded by Film in Limerick Engine Shorts programme. 

Writer: Ruaidhrí Hallinan 

Ruaidhrí is a writer, producer, and creative enthusiast from Co Mayo. Recently starting his screenwriting journey, Remote Strutting is only his second venture into the world of screenwriting, following the success of his debut project, Where The Old Man Lives, already being in pre-production. 

A driving force behind Maglite Films, an independent production company, Ruaidhrí is dedicated to bringing engaging narratives to the screen. With Remote Strutting he captures the essence of human resilience, and the universal desire in us all to adapt and thrive in the face of life’s many challenges. 

His writing portfolio showcases versatility across various genres, encompassing creative writing, comedy, fiction, short stories, and screenplays. Ruaidhrí’s passion for exploring diverse writing styles demonstrates his commitment to delving into characters and the intricacies of the human condition. 

Excited about the mentorship offered by the Ardán commission, Ruaidhrí looks forward to bringing Remote Strutting to life on the big screen. 

Producer: Brian Durcan (Western Front Studios) 

Brian is a Producer and Cinematographer from Westport, Co. Mayo. In 2021, he set up his own film production company, Western Front Studios. In the same year received a Leader grant, which aided him in investing in cinematic equipment with the aim of attracting bigger productions to the West of Ireland. 

Brian along with his wife and business partner Emer Durcan have won numerous bursaries including the inaugural Westmeath Film Bursary, producing and shooting the film Barry Versus The Binman. Other films include They Can’t Know About Me, Picture Day, and the award winning Bruise (2022). He also worked as the Second Unit Cinematographer on Director Alan Friel’s film Woken, produced by John McDonnell, Fantastic Films (2022). 

Brian is excited to produce and shoot this beautiful film. After shooting Bog for Lorna Fitzsimmons he is thrilled to be working with her again as they made a fantastic artistic team. He is also looking forward to the mentorship part of the project through Ardán. 

Producer: Emer Durcan (Western Front Studios) 

Producer Emer Durcan, also from Westport Co Mayo, boasts a remarkable producing portfolio that encompasses the pick-ups of Alan Friel’s Woken (2022) for Fantastic Films and Failte Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands advertising campaign. She also produced Picture Day for writer / director Jason Branagan, They Can’t Know About Me for writer / director Michael Carolan, Barry Versus The Binman, as the inaugural winner of the Westmeath Film Bursary. 

She has intensely studied producing by undertaking The Advanced Producers Course in TUD and Shadow Producing under Michael Garland on Baz Ashamis’s TV series, Faithless.

She is looking forward to working with Ardán / RTÉ to bring “Remote Strutting” to life and is delighted that Western Front Studios will be producing the shoot in the West of Ireland. 

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