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12 Mar 2015

Showtime for the island of Ireland in Toronto

Actor Brian Gleeson lends a hand to promote Ireland in Canada

The Toronto Irish Film Festival (TIRFF) took place at the weekend, with Tourism Ireland sponsoring the opening film, Standby – a romantic comedy set in Dublin which stars Brian Gleeson, who attended the opening night. Tourism Ireland, together with the Northern Ireland Bureau, also sponsored the closing night film, Rebuilding the World Trade Center – a BAFTA-winning documentary by Belfast filmmaker, Marcus Robinson, which chronicles the reconstruction of the World Trade Center. As part of Tourism Ireland’s sponsorship of the event, a trailer promoting the island of Ireland was shown ahead of both screenings – and all other TIRFF screenings over the festival weekend.

The Toronto Irish Film Festival celebrates our cinema and promotes the work of filmmakers from the island of Ireland – placing the spotlight on our wonderful film locations, arts and culture to the diaspora in Toronto and the wider Toronto film festival public. Reaching an audience of some 250,000 Torontonians with connections to the island of Ireland, as well as many more movie lovers, TIRFF is a really good platform for Tourism Ireland to communicate with Toronto and Ontario based ex-patriots, highlighting the many reasons for them to visit the island of Ireland in 2015.

Dana Welch, Tourism Ireland’s manager in Canada, said: “Tourism Ireland was delighted to sponsor the opening and closing night films of this year’s Toronto Irish Film Festival. The festival provides an excellent opportunity to highlight the island of Ireland to members of the diaspora living in the Greater Toronto Area, as well as Canadian film enthusiasts and the media.”

Tourism Ireland’s presence at the event also provided a valuable platform to continue to highlight the year-round access now available between Canada and Ireland. Dana Welch continued: “As an island destination, the importance of convenient, direct flights cannot be overstated; we know there is a proven direct correlation between access to Ireland and growth in visitor numbers. 2014 was the best year ever for tourism from Canada – with visitor numbers increasing by +30% over 2013. Tourism Ireland in Toronto will be pulling out all the stops again this year, to keep the momentum going and ensure that success continues.”

  Actor Brian Gleeson, star of Standby (centre), with the TIRFF team and Dana Welch, Tourism Ireland (right), at the opening night of the Toronto Irish Film Festival.

Notes To Editors

  • Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
  • Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
  • In 2014, we welcomed an estimated 8.6 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €4.26 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.Ireland.com, available in ten different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world. In 2014, Ireland.com attracted about 14.25 million visitors.