The RTS returned to Studio 4 at RTÉ in Dublin for the first time in two years for the centre’s Student Awards ceremony in March.
The National Film School at the Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology triumphed in three of the four main categories.
Fall of the Ibis King, made by Mikai Geronimo, Josh O’Caoimh and team, won the Animation award, and was described by the judges as a “richly textured melodrama, operatic in its themes of jealousy and murder”.
The Comedy and Entertainment prize went to Reuben Harvey’s film Flash_Thunder93, a “story told with deadpan humour about two storm worshippers, with pitch-perfect dialogue and a complex soundtrack”.
This Town Still Talks About You by Matthew McGuigan and team took the Drama award. The judges called it “a beautifully atmospheric piece, shot in bleak, black-and-white, ‘Nordic’ style. Strong performances and a nuanced script address the complexities of Irish family relationships.”
Kate Breen, Adam Daly and team from Dundalk Institute of Technology won the Factual prize with Bullet Casings in the Graveyard – “traditional in format, with a very strong story, well put together and well told”. In the Craft Skills categories, Ciara Rigney won the Camerawork award for the second year running.
Some of the biggest names in Ireland’s TV industry presented the awards: RTÉ Director-General Dee Forbes; TG4 Ard-Stiúrthóir Alan Esslemont; and Bill Malone, director of content at Virgin Media TV Ireland.
Agnes Cogan, Chair of the awards jury and RTS Republic of Ireland, said: “Despite the limitations and restrictions of the lockdown, this year’s contenders have risen to the challenge with glorious results – the standards were as high as ever in the history of the competition – or higher.”