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The Work That Made Me: Aoife Kelleher

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Arrow Films Aoife Kelleher reflects on teen spirit, talented women and career changing projects

The Work That Made Me: Aoife Kelleher

Aoife Kelleher's documentaries have established her as being at the forefront of exceptional Irish documentary making. As well as being beautifully filmed, Aoife's documentaries have been described as groundbreaking, entertaining & thought provoking. Her debut documentary feature film, 'One Million Dubliners'​ received numerous awards, including Best Irish Feature Documentary at the Galway Film Fleadh, and Best Factual at the Celtic Media Awards. Her work on behalf of BeLonG To Youth Services was highly commended by the United Nations.  

Aoife brings her experience in documentaries, her natural ability to engage with people and her cinematic approach to all her commercial work.


The music video from my childhood that stays with me…

I still love the raucous energy of Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit video, by Samuel Bayer and the raw, emotional intimacy of the video for Sinéad O’Connor’s Nothing Compares 2 U by John Maybury.


The work that made me want to get into the industry…

I might never have made commercials if it wasn’t for the work of BeLonG To, the organisation for LGBTQ young people in Ireland. In 2011, BeLonG to asked me to work with them to make an advertisement about homophobic bullying, which is still, as far as I know, the most viewed commercial for an Irish non-profit.


The creative work that I keep revisiting…

I love groundbreaking work by talented women. I constantly revisit the work of Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Emer Reynolds and Sharon Horgan.


My first professional project…

My first professional project was the RTÉ1 television series Growing Up Gay. The series was commissioned in 2008, when I was in my mid-twenties. Twitter was just a few years old when the programmes were broadcast and it was the first time I had ever been able to see people’s real-time responses to my work. It was an incredible learning experience.


The piece of work that still makes me jealous…

It changes all the time. Right now it’s I May Destroy You by Michaela Coel and BBDO London’s #wombstories ad for Bodyform.


The creative project that changed my career…

The creative project that changed my career was the feature documentary One Million Dubliners. A film about Glasnevin Cemetery and the incredible stories that can be found there, it was the first feature that I ever directed and it went on to win Best Irish Feature Documentary at the Galway Film Fleadh and Best Irish Film of 2014 in The Irish Times.


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Arrow Films, Wed, 13 Jan 2021 17:20:59 GMT