Direct Distribution

Direct Distribution

Funding for Irish producers to help defray the costs of a limited theatrical release in Ireland.

About the Funding

Funding for Irish producers to help with the costs of a theatrical release in Ireland (including Northern Ireland) for feature films already in receipt of Screen Ireland production or completion funding, that have been unable to secure suitable theatrical distribution by a bona fide Irish distribution company. 

Funding is provided in the form of limited-recourse loans recoverable from a share of revenues from the exploitation of the film. 

The producer is expected to take full responsibility for the preparation of the film for the theatrical release in the Irish market, and for its physical distribution. Meaningful consultation with Screen Ireland is required through all stages of the release. 

Accordingly, the following costs are eligible for Direct Distribution support: 

  • Costs of DCPs 
  • Trailer design and creation 
  • Creative and production costs of key art, posters, and advertising
  • Censorship submission 
  • Media space costs
  • Marketing, publicity and promotional costs 

It is a key principle of this support that the marketing campaign is targeted, efficient and where applicable, utilises the expertise of key partners in the release; such as exhibitors, distribution networks, and experienced marketing and communication agencies. 

Direct Distribution funding is capped at 80% of the total distribution budget, up to a maximum amount of €15,000. The funding is structured as a loan, recoverable from theatrical revenues, but not revenues derived from DVD, VOD and TV exploitation.  Screen Ireland will require full approval over all incurred costs. 


A decision by Screen Ireland to assist the release of a qualifying film will be predicated on the following: 

  • A positive assessment of the producer's release plan and overall distribution budget 
  • A commitment from an exhibitor to screen the film for at least one week 
  • Evidence of interest from more than one but preferably several venues to screen the film
  • Prior exposure at an Irish Film Festival 
  • Evidence of a positive critical and/or audience reaction from a screening at an Irish or International Film Festival 

Who Can Apply

Screen Ireland Direct Distribution funding is available to production companies established in the Republic of Ireland which are planning to release a qualifying film theatrically in Ireland (including Northern Ireland). Day and Date releasing whereby a film is organised to release both on theatrical and digital platforms simultaneously can also be supported.

Qualifying films for the purposes of this scheme are full-length feature films (fiction, animation or documentary) that are already in receipt of Screen Ireland production or completion funding. 

Screen Ireland can contract only with companies incorporated in the Republic of Ireland. 

Making an Application

Applications can be made online using the 'Make an Application' button on this page. Applicants must consult the Production Funding Guidelines 2019 in advance of making a submission. Applications which do not meet the criteria set out in these guidelines will be automatically withdrawn.

Screen Ireland Distribution Manager Emma Scott must be consulted prior to making an application. A copy of the film must be made available to the Distribution Manager prior to making an application. 

If you wish to make an application for funding by post, contact 091 561 398 for the relevant application form.

Distribution Application Deadlines for 2019

  • Friday 15th February
  • Friday 12th April
  • Friday 14th June
  • Friday 16th August
  • Friday 18th October
  • Friday 13th December