A Fighting Heart, a new feature documentary directed by Galway-based Achill Island man, Des Kilbane, will have its World Premiere at the prestigious Cleveland International Film Festival next month. Des co-produced the film with Midas Productions.
The film tells the epic story of Johnny Kilbane, poet, politician and the longest reigning World Featherweight Champion of all time. Johnny is a distant cousin of the director Des Kilbane. It’s a rags-to-riches story that begins on Achill Island, from where his ancestors orignated, and finishes in Cleveland Ohio, where Johnny Kilbane both entertained and served his community until his untimely death in 1957.
It also explores the theme of Irish emigration to the US, the role of Irish workers on the construction of the Erie Canal and, more specifically the cultural, social and historical links between the communities of Achill Island and Cleveland, Ohio that still strongly exist today.
The film is in competition at the festival as part of the Local Heroes strand. It will have three screenings on April 7th, 8th and 9th at the festival. The story was commissioned by TG4 and was part funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.
More info available here: www.clevelandfilm.org
Also, here: Midas Production’s Website