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Producer: Irish Film Board and tax relief contributed to success of The Favourite

Funding from the Irish Film Board and Section 41 tax relief contributed to the success of the Oscar-winning film The Favourite, the film’s producer has said.

Ed Guiney of Element Pictures, the Dublin production company, told RTE’s Morning Ireland that the company received very important support from the Irish Film Board in the initial development of the project ten years ago.

Section 41 tax relief was also received for the post production of the film which was completed in Dublin he said from Los Angeles from where he was speaking after the Academy Awards.

The star of the film Olivia Colman won the Best Actress award which came as a surprise as the seven-time nominated Glenn Close had been expected to take the award for her film The Wife.

Mr Guiney praised Ms Colman for her acceptance speech.

It was a great speech, honestly she wasn’t prepared. I had just been with her at the bar when she said ‘we’d better go see Glenn get the award’. It was all very spontaneous.

He said that everyone involved in the film had been on the edge of their seats. It would not have been a disaster to come away with no awards, he said as the film has benefitted enormously from its 10 nominations.

“The commercial value is in the nominations. That’s where the box office value is.”

The producer pointed out that the film had been on 600 screens before the Academy Award nominations, afterwards it was showing in 50 countries worldwide.

He said that the Academy Awards this year were very “spread out” and it had been “a scrappy year”. He was surprised that Green Book took the Best Film award. The variety of the winners this year is going to mean more diverse films will be made in the future, he said.

Being at the awards is an opportunity to pre-sell future projects, he added. One of which is an adaptation of the award-winning novel by Sally Rooney ‘Normal People’ which will be directed by Lenny Abrahamson in Dublin in May.