Director Juliet Riddell, Actor Stephen Rea, Writer Clare Dwyer Hogg and Angus Mitchell

STORY | Field Day marked it’s 40th anniversary at this year’s Foyle Film Festival with the premiere of 'Stay Alive'

1 Dec 2021

The 8 minute film was funded by the Paul Hamlyn foundation and filmed entirely on location in Derry and at the Playhouse in June. The Nerve Centre assisted the production contributing two members of the film crew.   

STAY ALIVE was conceived as a visual pamphlet – a reference to the pamphlets Field Day historically published in order to disseminate ideas - and is imagined as a direct message to someone who is considering taking their own life. It features Stephen Rea as well as actors Emmet Kirwan, Lisa Dwyer Hogg and Jeanne Nicole Ní Áinle. 

The film premiere was followed by a panel discussion with writer Clare Dwyer-Hogg, director Juliet Riddell and actor Stephen Rea. In 2018 the three had teamed up to make the emotionally-charged polemic Hard Border. Hard Border was described by Professor Kieran Walsh as a “wonderfully poetic, evocative and excoriating short film about the Irish border and why it matters so much.”

After Hard Border found a massive audience on social media, Stephen Rea commissioned Clare Dwyer-Hogg to write STAY ALIVE as a creative response to the high incidence of suicide in Ireland. Clare commented that if the film helps one person reconsider their own worth, it will be a success. Juliet Riddell discussed her artistic approach to translating Clare Dwyer-Hogg’s heartfelt poetry into striking visual images and performances. 

View the film and panel discussion.