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MARCUS, Louis (director-scriptwriter-producer) (1936-)

A native of Cork, Louis Marcus started in film with amateur productions for the Cork Film Society before being employed as an assistant on George Morrison’s MISE ÉIRE (1959). He made his first short film, THE SILENT ART (1959) about sculptor Seamus Murphy. He worked on Morrison’s next project, SAOIRSE? (1961) before starting to make documentaries for the Irish language filmmaking organization Gael Linn. Hisbest known film for Gael Linn was FLEA CEOIL (1967), about a traditional music festival in Kilrush, County Clare. It won a number of international awards, including the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival in 1967. In 1968, it was nominated for an Academy Award. Other films from this period were PEIL (1962) and CHRISTY RING (1963). Marcus formed his own production company and has since worked as a freelance director, producing and directing films for RTÉ, TG4, Ulster Television and Channel 4. These include Hidden Lives (1990), THE IRISH CONDITION (1994), FAMINE (1995) and THE IRISH EXPERENCE (2000). He has twice received Academy Award nominations as producer - for PÁISTÍ AG OBAIR/CHILDREN AT WORK (1973) and CONQUEST OF LIGHT (1975). His docudrama on Padraig (Patrick) Pearse, REVIVAL: PEARSE’S CONCEPT OF IRELAND (1979), was a polemical intervention in the burgeoning argument about the significance of the 1916 Rebellion. Marcus was an early campaigner for the establishment of an indigenous Irish film industry, writing a series of articles for the Irish Times in 1967 which were later published as a pamphlet by the Irish Film Society. He served on the commission that produced the Huston Report (1968) and on the Irish Film Board in the 1980s and when it was reestablished in 1993. He was elected to Aosdána, the Arts Council body established to honour artists of special merit, in 1988. Through his production company, Marcus has been responsible for making over 80 documentaries, many of them on Ireland’s social and cultural history and often in the Irish language. His brother, David Marcus, is a well-known writer and literary editor.


Books by
  1. The Irish Film Industry
Contact: | Last updated: Nov 27 2006.