Adrian McCarthy is the owner of Curious Dog Films which was established in late 2019. He has been making documentaries for over twenty years and was previously the co-owner of Wildfire Films. An award winning producer/director, Adrian was described by the Irish Times as having made some of Ireland’s best contemporary documentaries. He has made over fifty hours of television and feature doc’s for national and international broadcasters and funders like RTE, Screen Ireland, BAI, TG4, Channel 4, BBC Four, Virgin Media, Setanta, ARTE Germany, YLE Finland, SBS Australia and The History Channel.
Raised in West Cork and living in Dublin, Adrian’s work covers a broad range of subjects across the arts, sport, politics, music, comedy, true-crime, social issues, mental health and the ups and downs of life.
Some of his work includes: the IFTA winning ‘ROUGH RIDER’ film, on controversial journalist and former pro-cyclist, Paul Kimmage. It was described as ‘Remarkable. A superb film, a sad story of unrequited love‘ by The Sunday Independent and ‘Excellently paced, well crafted and beautifully filmed‘ by the Irish Times. The IFTA nominated, ‘PORTRAIT of a GALLERY’ was filmed over three years inside the walls of National Gallery of Ireland. The Irish Times described it as ‘a brilliant pieces of art criticism. In this documentary, the National Gallery gets a depiction worthy of its renovation‘. He produced the highly acclaimed ‘ANTHONY FOLEY – MUNSTERMAN’ on the story of the sudden death of the Munster rugby coach, ‘A moving and uplifting documentary. A poignant tribute’ – Sunday Times. His IFTA winning ‘HIDDEN IMPACT – Rugby and Concussion’ was described as ‘an excellent documentary making for deeply unsettling yet essential viewing‘ by The Irish Times. After his documentary ‘GRAHAM LINEHAN – FUNNY BUSINESS‘, Shane Hegarty in The Irish Times said ‘A cracking profile. It was as assured an hour of television as you’re likely to see all year. Although it’s no surprise given it was the work of Adrian McCarthy. If you want an observational documentary, he’s about as good as they come’. And ‘SMALL FAR AWAY – THE WORLD OF FATHER TED‘ for Channel Four, was nominated for an IFTA, given five stars and described as ‘Lovely Stuff’ by Time Out, London.
In 2021, he was series producer/director on the new 3 x 1hour series ‘OUR TOWN‘ following the lives of young people in the seaside town of Bray, Co. Wicklow – produced by Curious Dog Films/Wildfire Films for RTE. Made with a great team that included film editor/writer Brenda Morrissey, producer Oda O’Carroll and co-director Judy Kelly. Our Town was described as ‘A beautiful portrait of young people in all their strength, vulnerability and wisdom. A compelling portrait of a town and community‘ by Patrick Freyne in The Irish Times. And, ‘Our Town felt wholly authentic, faithful and heartfelt. An organic and coherent piece of documentary making‘ by Eilish O’Hanlon in The Sunday Independent.
Also in 2021, he directed the 2 x 1 hour THE KILLING of FATHER NIALL MOLLOY, produced by Sharon Lawless and Flawless Films. The controversial 1980’s story was broadcast on RTE One in September. Liam Fay in the Sunday Times described it as ‘An engrossing delve into the many mysteries that still surround this most intriguing of 1980s scandals. Adrian McCarthy’s elegantly made two-parter worked exceptionally well on distinct levels: both as true crime documentaries and vivid social histories. The jaw dropping strangeness of late 20th Ireland has rarely been more evocatively encapsulated’. And Pat Stacey in The Herald ‘The forensic precision and commendable lack of sensationalism make it a riveting true-crime documentary. McCarthy’s superb two-parter breaks the chains of the genre to become something more’.
From originating ideas, building trust with participants and securing funding, Adrian has extensive experience across all aspects of the production process. His doc’s have won numerous awards including IFTA’s, Radharc Awards, National Media Awards, Best European Documentary award and also nominated for Prix Europa and Celtic Media Festival.
With Curious Dog Films, Adrian likes collaborating with passionate, talented individuals and teams, in order to create thought provoking documentaries that will make us laugh, cry and scratch our heads as we make sense of the world around us. He is also working as a freelance director and producer.
Curious Dog Films currently have a number of documentary projects in production and in development. With COVID travel restrictions starting to lift we recently started filming our RTE/BAI funded arts documentary on inspirational New York based designer CLODAGH. With Oda O’Carroll on board as director, we enjoyed filming in Spain, Dublin, Kinsale and New York and begin post in early 2022 with editor Brenda Morrissey. We are also in development on WHIDDY – a doc on the gulf oil terminal disaster in 1979, for Screen Ireland and RTE. Adrian’s dad worked as a fireman on that unforgettable night. This one is personal. We are also developing ‘Something In The River‘ a film on the remarkable story of the Skibbereen Rowing Club and their relationship with the Ilen River . Adrian is one of the producers on a feature doc ‘Children of the Church‘ with Mike Rezendes from the Boston Globe Spotlight team. Sarah Share is on board as director. Producing this alongside Wildfire Films and Screen Siren Pictures in Canada. They are currently securing the final levels of funding.
If you have a unique story that you feel is important to tell, then do get in touch. Always happy to chat or meet for a coffee or a pint 🙂