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Josselin Le Gall and Valérie David-McGonnell, directors of the Cork French Film Festival, Fencer Rory Hayes and Musketeer Johan Le Bras launching the 35th Cork French Film Festival runs from March 2nd to 10th at the Arc Cinema Cork, with Sport the theme of this year’s festival. Included in the programme are a number of César award nominated films, including Parts 1 and 2 of ‘The Three Musketeers.
Photo Darragh Kane

35th event to include a wealth of César-nominated films

A film which opened the 2023 Cannes Film Festival will have its Irish premiere at the Cork French Film Festival. 

‘Jeanne du Barry,’ a historical drama, written, directed and produced by the highly acclaimed French Director and Actress Maïwenn and which stars Johnny Depp, will be the opening film at this year’s event, which runs from March 2nd to 10th at the Arc Cinema in Cork. 

The impressive programme consists of a diverse selection of 18 French-language films, including much hailed sci-fi ‘The Animal Kingdom,’ this year’s most César-nominated film in France with 12 nods, as well the six-times César nominated duo of films, ‘The Three Musketeers’: ‘Part 1: D’Artagnan’, and ‘Part 2: Milady’ –  the latter of which is the closing night film and another Irish premiere. The films feature a number of internationally-renowned actors, such as Eva Green and Vincent Cassel,

Alliance Française de Cork President and Festival Co-Director Valérie David-McGonnell said: “We are immensely proud of our programme for the 35th Cork French Film Festival, which features several Irish premieres. We were also keen to mark several significant anniversaries this year with our choice of films; the ‘Three Musketeers’ films, to celebrate the 180th anniversary of the publication of the famous Alexandre Dumas’s eponymous novel, and the screening of the fantastic ‘D:Day Normandy 1944’ to mark the 80th anniversary of the D-Day Landing during World War II, with directors/producers Pascal and Catherine Vuong in attendance. There really is something for all cinephiles in the programme. You don’t need to speak French to enjoy our festival, as all films have English subtitles; but if you do speak French, the festival is a fantastic way to practice while enjoying various good quality films and discovering different cultural backgrounds, as well as memorable characters, whether real or fictional. We are grateful to the French and Canadian Embassies for supporting the 35th edition of our Francophone film festival.”  

Sports enthusiasts are in for a treat with films centered around the theme of sports, aligning with the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Paris. This year’s festival includes several long features about sport and athletes, including French films about tennis and horse racing, and a Canadian film about an olympic swimmer. 

The Ambassador of France to Ireland, H. E. Vincent Guérend said: “I am delighted to support the Cork French Film Festival. 2024 will be the 35th edition of the festival, bringing the best of French and Francophone cinema to Cork every year. The Cork French Film Festival plays a significant role in promoting the cultural links between our two countries. At the moment, sport is playing a huge role in Franco-Irish relations, with the Rugby World Cup 2023 having taken place in France and the Olympic and Paralympic games taking place in Paris in 2024. Indeed, the festival is highlighting three films on sport in particular this year.”

Cork French Film Festival Co-Director and Honorary Consul of France in Cork Josselin Le Gall said: “Over the past 35 years, the Cork French Film Festival has gone from strength to strength and has become a cultural cornerstone, attracting an impressive audience of more than 100,000 festival-goers over the years. This remarkable milestone underscores the festival’s ever-increasing quality and its significant impact on the vibrant city of Cork. We are proud that the Cork French Film Festival is one of Munster’s longest running festivals, and the oldest French film festival in Ireland. Valérie David-McGonnell and I are delighted to be part of the programming team, and we are very grateful to our festival producers Úna Feely and Mick Hannigan, to all our sponsors and partners, and of course to our diverse audiences without whom this event would simply not be possible.”

Other highlights in a packed programme include the Irish premiere of ‘The Crime is Mine,’ an exciting French feature with a star-studded cast from renowned director François Ozon. French actor Dany Boon, who recorded a video message for Cork people who came to see the beautifully moving film ‘Driving Madeleine’ at last year’s Cork French Film Festival, also stars in this film.

The screening of a restored version of the 1950 masterpiece ‘Orphée’ directed by Jean Cocteau and starring Jean Marais will delight classic film fans. 

The film proposed this year for post-primary schools is ‘Tempête’ (‘Ride Above’) by French-Canadian director Christian Duguay, about a girl who learns how to overcome a terrible accident in order to realize her dream of becoming a jockey like her father. There will be three venues for school screenings this year, in Cork, Mallow and Midleton. In 2022-2023, over 1200 students from different secondary schools from Cork, Limerick and Kerry attended the festival’s school screenings. 

The festival is presented by Alliance Française de Cork and is supported by the French and Canadian Embassies in Ireland, the Arts Council, the Cork City Council, Air France, Amarenco, Brittany Ferries, EirGrid, Eurotranslations Cork, Port of Cork, the AIPLF (Irish Association of French-Language Teachers), Institut Français, Explore France, the Metropole Hotel, and Cork Airport.

All screenings will take place in the recently refurbished Arc Cinema, Cork. Tickets are available from: 

The full programme is available at

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