Blazing The Trail
Ireland, USA 2011
Director: Peter Flynn; screenplay: Peter Flynn; cinematography: Peter Flynn; editing: Peter Flynn, Cobb Carlson; producer: Tony Tracy; narrator: Neil McGarry; production company: BIFF Productions; Irish location: Co. Kerry; duration: 86’.
The ‘O’Kalems’ is the name given to a small group of motion picture pioneers, led by actor/director Sidney Olcott and actor/writer Gene Gauntier of New York’s Kalem Company, who between 1910 and 1915 produced almost thirty (mostly short) films dealing with Ireland and Irish subjects. The majority of these films were shot in and around Killarney, Co. Kerry, making extensive use of its famous landscape and using locals as extras. Produced over four successive summers, the ‘O’Kalem’ films were not only the earliest fiction films produced in Ireland, but also the first American fiction films shot in Europe.