George Best, on right in white shirt, holding the European Cup on May 30, 1968, with Manchester United manager Matt Busby and teammate Pat Crerand on the left
By Irish Echo Staff
Sports will feature prominently in CraicFest 20, which takes place in New York City from March 8-10. The film part of the program will be preceded by the Craic Music Festival on Saturday night, March 3, at Mercury Lounge with Irish headliner Colin Devlin.
Craic Fest has announced that that the FDNY/NYPD-themed “Rivalry City” will open the film festival on Thursday night, March 8, at Cinepolis Theater West 23rd St. (the Manhattan location for all of the films). Shot over the past few years on and off the ice, it tells the story of the ice feud between the police and firefighter hockey teams.
It relates, too, the story of 9/11 related illnesses and how tough hockey players battle them off the ice.
CraicFest founder-director Terence Mulligan said: “My brother is a retired fireman and I grew up going to this game at Madison Square Garden back in the ‘80s. It really is an intense rivalry.
“The energy is off the charts when you enter the rink that night. Both teams lay it all on the line. I have friends on both sides as I played hockey with guys on both teams,” he said.
Mulligan added that director Matt Benoliel will attend the film and the Q&A after the screening.
The highlight of the Friday night gala on March 9 is the New York premiere of “George Best Himself,” a documentary about the Belfast-born Manchester United superstar. The popular Kids Fleadh will return on Saturday morning March 10.
CraicFest 20 will continue March 10 with a music documentary on the folk band Kila and indie films like “Stalker” (starring rising Irish actor Barry Keoghan from “Dunkirk”) and the New York premiere of “Cardboard Gangsters” (starring “Love/Hate” actor John Connors) The closing gala will feature the premier of “Apollo House” (a doc about the homeless in Dublin with Irish music stars Hozier and Glen Hansard) produced by and starring Jim Sheridan. The legendary director will be attending the Q & A after the screening.
For the full program go to www.thecraicfest.com or call the festival office 917-373-6735.