Fricker to receive Maureen O'Hara award


BRENDA FRICKER is to receive the inaugural Maureen O'Hara award at the Kerry film festival, a nine-day event which begins next weekend.

Among the adjudicators of the festival's competitions this year is the actor Liam Neeson.

The Samhlaíocht Kerry Film Festival, which is celebrating nine years of bringing Irish and international film to Kerry, will include a screening of the John Ford classic The Quiet Manin honour of O'Hara.

Festival spokesman Jason O'Mahony said both women displayed qualities of leadership and bravery. "The Maureen O'Hara Award acknowledges women that have demonstrated outstanding leadership in their respective fields and Brenda Fricker is a most worthy recipient," Mr O'Mahony said.

Fricker, who will receive the honour at the awards ceremony in the Fels Point Hotel on November 8th, has promised to place it alongside her Oscar.

Among the highlights will be a documentary about one of the Kingdom's favourite sons, "teacher, fisherman, turf cutter, and rugby player" Con Houlihan. Waiting for Houlihanis by the filmmaker Maurice Healy.

While there are to be a number of special screenings during the week of the festival, the main feature is a short film competition which focuses on young filmmakers, Irish and international, seeking exposure for their work. Screenings will take place throughout the county.

The panel of judges at the festival includes the award-winning film-maker Kirsten Sheridan, John Carney, director and writer of the Oscar-winning film Once, and Oscar-winning short film-makers Suzie Templeton and Vanessa Roth.

The full programme is available on the festival website at