5 December 2023 The Irish Film & Television Network

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Aisling Walsh's Ethel presented at Venice Production Bridge gap-financing market
12 Sep 2023 : Luke Shanahan
Aisling Walsh
Irish director Aisling Walsh recently presented her latest project Ethel at this yearís Venice Production Bridge gap-financing market. The project is set to begin shooting next year.

Aisling Walsh’s upcoming musical biopic is set to shoot next year. The film is directed by Walsh (Maudie), written by Celeste Parr (Gurov and Anna), and produced by Marie-Claude Poulin (Brooklyn) and Martina Niland (Grabbers).

Ethel tells the true story of Ethel Stark and how she founded the Montreal Women's Symphonic Orchestra in the 1940s, becoming the first woman to conduct in Carnegie Hall.

Shira Haas (Unorthodox) is set to portray Stark. Ethel is a MCP Productions film, and Sphere Films are handling distribution. It was one of two Irish co-productions presented at the Venice Production Bridge gap-financing market this year, the other being Jim Sheridan’s upcoming docudrama Re-creation starring Vicky Krieps as French film and TV producer Sophie Toscan du Plantier.

“The film is about women finding their voice,” Walsh told Variety. “The orchestra changed their lives. It saw them through the war, saw them through tragedy and heartbreak and loss, and also it saw them out the other side, helping them find a career. Many were housewives, bringing up children, and not necessarily working. Being a part of this offered them something that they never had before.”

IFTN Festive Q&A with director Luke McManus
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