WATCH: Donegal filmmakers new production screens locally this weekend

Heart warming story of Ireland's last remaining primary boarding school

By Eamonn McFadden


By Eamonn McFadden


A new film by Donegal filmmakers that celebrates great teaching in Ireland’s last remaining primary boarding school will be screened in Donegal from this weekend.
In Loco Parentis by Neasa Ní Chianáin and David Rane takes a heart-warming look at the lives of two soon-to- be-retired teachers—and married couple of almost 50 years—whose passion and idiosyncratic teaching styles inspire and challenge the young students in their care at Headfort School in Kells, Co Meath.
The Sundance Film Festival described it as an antidote for the dark times we live in.
In Loco Parentis, which had its Irish premiere at the Dublin Film Festival last month, will open at Century Cinemas Letterkenny on Friday 10 March and will screen twice daily until Thursday 16 March.
It will also be screened at the Eclipse Cinemas, Bundoran and Lifford.
Headfort is a topsy-turvy world of woodland forts, Latin, rock music and Shakespeare where happiness is key and children are taught to think for themselves in this magical Hogwart’s like 18th century school.
At the heart of this unique school, are dedicated couple John and Amanda Leyden, who have spent almost 50 years teaching at Headfort, and even live on the grounds.
Filmmakers, Ni Chianáin and Rane, spent two years filming on location and over four years working on the film.
“We wanted our film to capture the unique spirit of Headfort School and particularly these two teachers who put their hearts and souls into what they do. We literally went back to school and the biggest lesson we learned is that education can be as much about play and discovery and fun. When a child is happy, all sorts of magic will happen,” explains director, Neasa Ní Chianáin.
“People of all ages are loving it. It has a real feel good factor. We are over the moon that audiences in Donegal will get a chance to see this life-affirming film,” said Neasa Ní Chianáin.
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