Ability Gardens

Anatomy of a Failed Project

Barney and Molly

Berlin Cinemas

The Boy from Mercury

The Bumblebee Flies Anyway

The Business (Morgan O'Sullivan)

Cinema Paradiso (The Classic)

Down and Dirty Pictures

A Dubliner's Berlin

The Dundee Experiment

Interview with Pádraic Whyte

An Irishman n the Autobahn

Peg Leg Gus

The Road to Mercury

Sir Morbid the Brood

Someone Else's Dream

Splice of Life

Summer of the Flying Saucer

The Testimony of Taliesin Jones



















From his first job as an apprentice projectionist at a suburban Dublin cinema, to becoming an international director of family films, Martins journey has taken him through the movie industry in four countries, collaborating with hundreds of talented actors, fellow writers and filmmakers, over a span of three and a half decades.  (Read his Curriculum Vitae).

On this page Martin offers a collection of material related to his experiences as a filmmaker, including shooting diaries, screenplays, articles, interviews, sound bytes and photos.  This resource is intended to be of use for aspiring filmmakers and students of film.  All the material may be reproduced freely by educational institutions for teaching purposes or projects.  For any other application of these materials please contact us first.

Cinema Paradiso

The Westex projector in the Classic Cinema, Dublin


Notes on the Irish Film Industry

After two and a half years of struggling to get his script, "Jenny's Gift," a drama dealing with child abuse, into production, Martin surrendered, exasperated, citing major bungling by the Irish Film Board as the cause of failure.  In September, 2002, he submitted his bitter complaint to Film Ireland, the journal of the nations film industry, follow the link to read his full "Anatomy of a Failed Project."

The Irish Film boom of the 1990's was to a great extent the doing of one man,
producer and partner of Ardmore Studios, Morgan O'Sullivan.
Read Martins profile of Morgan for Film Ireland, in
"The Business."

Martin Duffy's love of film began as a teenage apprentice-projectionist at the Kenilworth (now the Classic) cinema at Harold's Cross in the southside of Dublin.  His heartwarming article, "Cinema Paradiso"  harks to those days, and mourns the loss of the city's small movie theaters to the multiplexes.

Read Martin's reflections on exploitation in the Indie movie scene through Peter Biskind's
"Down and Dirty Pictures."

Learn more about the heroes and villains of the flailing medium of educational family films in "The Dundee Experiment."

Anatomy of a Failed Project

Anatomy of a Failed Project

The Dundee Experiment

The Dundee Experiment


The Boy from Mercury

Martin's first feature was released in 1996 to rave reviews.  The film, based on his childhood in Crumlin, a suburb in the southside of Dublin city, was a dream become reality for the writer/director.

Starring Hugh O'Connor, Rita Tushingham, Tom Cortenay and introducing a young prodigy, James Hickey, the film enjoyed critical success and won several awards on the festivals circuit.

Visit the Boy from Mercury page to see the cast and crew and sample some soundbytes from the original score.

In 2006 Martin published his journals and working screenplay from the film together in one book.  Learn about The Road to Mercury.

A recent Trinity College Dublin thesis on Childhood in Irish Cinema, by Pádraic Whyte, includes a chapter on The Boy from Mercury.  With kind permission from the author, the interview is reproduced on this site...

James Hickey as the Boy from Mercury

James Hickey as the Boy from Mercury




The Bumblebee Flies Anyway

The Bumblebee movie was one of the New York Bowery's famous "Shooting Gallery's" last productions.  Starring Elijah Wood, Jeaneane Garofalo and Rachael Leigh Cook, and with a veteran production team and crew, initially Martin felt he was being thrown in the deep end as a director-for-hire, especially as he could not bring into the project any of his own trusted crew from Ireland.  Apart from a few minor hiccups, it proved to be a pleasant learning experience for Martin.  Read his article dated from the end of the shoot Shooting the Bumblebee.


Elijah Wood as Barney Snow in The Bumblebee Flies Anyway

Elijah Wood in The Bumblebee Flies Anyway


The Testimony of Taliesin Jones

Working as a "director-for-hire" produced new challenges for Martin, who by 1999 had established a reputation for his forte of working with child actors.  During the eight weeks of shooting "Taliesin Jones" around various Welsh locations, he sent updates to family and friends by email.  These frank and honest reports offer a glimpse of Martins method as a director, his calmness in the chaos of collaborative creativity, and his coping with the pettiness of film-set politics...

Read the collected updates.

For more background on the politics of film production, read Martins article on working as a director-for-hire in a piece written for FilmWest magazine, "Someone Else's Dream."


John-Paul MacLeod inTaliesin Jones

John-Paul Macleod in The Testimony of Taliesin Jones



The Splice of Life

Martin's first short film for RTÉ (Irish National Television), Splice of Life, follows a curious day in the life of a film editor, in which he is given the opportunity to re-cut his mundane morning routine into a more "upbeat" montage.

The Splice of Life page contains the movie in full (18 mins) and a list of cast and crew.

Paul Bennett in Splice of Life

Splice of Life



Summer of the Flying Saucer

A spaceship crashlands in rural western Ireland in the late 1960's and two young men come to the aliens' aid, and befriend them, passing them off as Hungarian refugees to the locals while they help repair the craft.

Much of the old crew from The Boy from Mercury are back together for this fun production and shooting began on September 15th, 2006.

Martin will be keeping regular updates and shooting diaries from this latest feature on the Flying Saucer page, from August 2006 onwards.  We hope to include some video and sneak peaks at production also in the near future.


Summer of the Flying Saucer updates

Summer of the Flying Saucer shoot 2006