Irish born and bred Macdara Vallely has a theater background; he moved to New York City in 2000 and — skipping film school — began making films in order to reach a wider audience than he could on the stage. He debuted with the feature “Peacefire” in 2008, which he adapted from his own award-winning play. The film went on to win awards at the Galway Film Fleadh, the European First Feature Festival at Angers and the Annonay Film Festival.
What it’s about: Set in the Bronx, “Babygirl” is a drama about a teenage girl, who finds herself trapped in a love-triangle with her mom’s latest boyfriend.
Director Vallely says: “I wrote ‘Babygirl’ a few summers ago shortly after witnessing a real-life incident on a 2 train in the Bronx. A lot of my directorial decisions were influenced by a desire to try recreate that slice-of-life moment. We had decided we weren’t going to make the movie unless we found the right actor to play the lead role. Yainis Ynoa walked in second to last on our last open-call, two weeks before we were due to start shooting. That was an interesting moment.”
Inspirations? “The use of music in the film was inspired by ‘The Graduate.’ A classic.”
On the Tribeca debut: “We really wanted to premiere at Tribeca because all of our young cast are from New York City. They are so talented and hard-working. It’s great that they will be able to attend with their family and friends.”
Indiewire invited Tribeca Film Festival directors to tell us about their films, including what inspired them, the challenges they faced and what they’re doing next. We’ll be publishing their responses leading up to the 2012 festival.
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