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Process

Writing A Beautiful script

FIRST STEP
This story had been floating around my head for a long time, the relationship between an old man and a child bonding over music. I wanted to work with a child actor and the character of Finn is loosely based on myself at his age. I wanted to create a simple story in a timeless environment and an antique shop is idiosyncratic and cinematic.
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THEN the perfect cast

SECOND STEP
I look for ‘the process’ with actors, experimenting with drama beyond the page. That is never a luxury on a short film. I found first-time actor, Oisín Murphy through casting agent Annette Walsh and I feel fortunate to have met this remarkable boy. When I auditioned Oisín, he was immediately natural, believable and utterly open. Oisín has Irish-Tibetan heritage and harbours exquisite stillness and concentration. He is centred in ways that I’m not, and his stillness brought focus to his acting. This was Oisin’s first film role and he never flagged or grew bored with his process during the shoot. He responded very quickly to the circus of production and to his actors. I have long admired Lalor Roddy having seen him on stage many times. Lalor perfectly fitted the character of Mr. Perry. His presence benefits the film enormously. Lalor was inspired by the music and tragedy of Chet Baker’s life. Finally, my old college friend Denise Quinn displays fierce intelligence and she brought a lovely comic timing to the frustrated piano teacher, Mrs. Lopsided.
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The Shoot

THIRD STEP
Undoubtedly, a film shoot will find its way to breaking your heart, but without cliché this was a dream. An almost divinely ordained confluence of factors made it one of the most pleasant films I have ever experienced, and the crew expressed the same sentiment. This is how creativity should be fashioned. First and foremost, this story was made achievable through the agency, kindness and support of my good friend and mentor Neil McCann, who resonated with the process, who trusted and championed all my lunacy, who always brings integrity of intention and dare I say wisdom to everything he touches.

The support of the SDGI Arri-Alexa Award kick-started the process. Ciarán Tanham DP, is a gentleman, and I love the way he lights a scene, such opulence with so little. Ciarán responded to my ideas and his calmness tempered and reassured me constantly. Through the agency ‘of 24/7 Drama’ we had access to a large amount of expensive equipment, but trusting simplicity, we shot with only three lenses and the truth. We decided not to move the camera allowing the action to play out in frame.

The film was shot over a sunny April weekend with friends in my hometown with all the positive aspects of a ‘home-movie’. Friendship was key in this process, friends such as Nastaise & Eanna who provided their drawing room, Catherine who allowed her house to be turned upside down and Norman who bestowed his shop, The Treasure Chest.

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Mounting The Film

Fourth Step
A key collaborator was film editor Gráinne Gavigan who cuts narrative scenes with sensitivity to every nuance of behaviour and attention-to-detail. We had a protracted time in post, and this gave us time to cradle the process, so that nothing in the final cut was extraneous, overwrought or precious. My gratitude to Les Keye at Arad Studio who recorded the jazz band, to everyone at Egg Post-Production, and to the razor-sharp ear of Katie O’Mahony, the sound editor who spent many days honing the music and designing a soundscape befitting this story.
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FILM PREMIERE And Beyond

Fifth Step
Finally, my sincere gratitude to everyone who gave so generously to this film.

It belongs to the audience now.

Denis McArdle

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What People are saying about the silver lining

Tender And Beautiful

A tender and beautiful piece of film that is acted superbly. Lalor and Oisins chemistry is mesmerising. An exceptional short film...

Paula Quirke

Thought Provoking

A truly thought provoking piece that allows the viewer to be completely immersed by the top notch acting. Well done Denis and the Team....

David Hemsworth

Simply Well Done

Simply well done to all involved. Especialy Lalor, Denise, Oisin and Denis. A great movie with a gorgeous story that has so much depth. An inspired piece of work.

June Desmond