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Irish swing ax

McCarthy and Horgan exit film board

LONDON — The Irish Film Board has axed its head of production and development Brendan McCarthy and its head of marketing Moira Horgan.

Their positions are being abolished in a major shake-up of the organization, which is intended to pave the way for the appointment of a new chief executive to replace the recently departed Mark Woods.

Both McCarthy and Horgan have been told that their four-year contracts, due to expire in September, will not be renewed.

The new CEO will assume direct responsibility for production and development. The marketing department will have a new focus to attract foreign films to shoot in Ireland.

In dispensing with McCarthy, the IFB has responded to pressure from Irish producers, who have been vocal in their criticism of what they see as his bureaucratic approach to the role.

The exit of Horgan, who was generally regarded as doing a good job in tricky circumstances, is more of a surprise. However, the board appears to have decided that it needs to concentrate its resources on marketing Ireland as a location, rather than promoting Irish movies at home and abroad.

IFB chairman James Morris said, “We are in the process of recruiting a new CEO and we see this person as a more hands on ‘editor in chief’ role for the board.”

“The agency has a total staff of 16 and the purpose of this change is to have a flatter structure with more resources available for dealing directly with clients,” he added.

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