Hardback Films is the brand name for Katie McNeice, a multi award-winning Writer Director of thoughtful identity films with a particular focus on sexuality and gender.

Screen Ireland Rising Star 2023, presented by Screen International


Writer Director
Katie McNeice

Mo O’Connell

Richard Kendrick

Pat Shortt
Fiach Kunz
Johanna O’Brien
Cate Russell
Rebecca Hickey
Gerry Cannon
Joe McNeice

A young dad in rural Ireland must face his anxiety around gender and bullying when his baby is born intersex.

When David and Caoimhe are dealt an intersex diagnosis for their newborn and told of an upcoming surgical decision they must keep strictly secret, David shuts down and leaves the hospital in silence. His child’s gender ambiguity has triggered memories of being bullied on his father’s farm for being unmasculine, and he doubts his ability as a father and even as a man. He emerges only to help his father with lambing season.

As thunder sounds outside the family farm and the day of the surgical appointment draws near, will David be able to show up for his child, and love them no matter who they turn out to be?


Iris Prize Nominee, 2022
Kildare ShortGrass Film Bursary, 2021
IMDb Script to Screen Award, 2021
Best Short Screenplay, Kerry International Film Festival, 2020

Whale Fall

Writer Director
Katie McNeice

Katie McNeice
Amy Hughes
Jack Prendergast

Richard Hogan

Rebecca Hickey
Amy Hughes

A glimpse beneath the surface of a relationship bonded by books, whales and love.

WHALE FALL was written, filmed and edited in just two days as part of the 2021 Galway Little Cinema 48 Hour Challenge, judged by Niall Murphy (Treasure Entertainment, Scannáin), Maeve McGrath (Brooklyn), Máire Ní Chonláin (TG4) and Sean Breathnach (Foscadh).

This project will begin its festival run in 2022.

Best LGBTQ Film, Manchester International Film Festival
Best LGBTQ Film, Edinburgh International Film Festival
Best LGBTQ Film, Baltimore New Media Web Fest
Best Cinematography, Lake County Film Festival (Richard Hogan)


Best Short Film
Best Editing (Katie McNeice)
Best Actress (Rebecca Hickey)

Focail Baile Croí

Writer Director
Katie McNeice

Maggie Ryan

Production Manager
Laura Whelan

Evan Barry

Lochlann O’Mearáin
Amy-Joyce Hastings
Fiach Kunz
Aindriú Lavelle
Ollie Ryan
Nora McSherry
Abigail Foley
Connor McEvoy
Joe McNeice
Katie-Mai Buckley
Matthew Durcan
Hanóra Kelly

A father imagines moments he will share with his son, teaching him words for his experiences in a home full of language and heart.

This short film uses the emotive power of the Irish language to envision a simple yet moving idea of the relationship between parent and child, and reimagines grief as a privilege of love.

FOCAIL BAILE CROI is funded by the Comórtas Físín Pitching Competition, which encourages the production of short films in the Irish language. It is also funded by the Screen Kerry Short Film Bursary. This project was shot on location in Killorglin, Co. Kerry in November 2022 and is currently in post production.


Comórtas Físín Pitching Competition, 2020
Best Short Screenplay, Catalyst International Film Festival 2020
Screen Kerry Short Film Bursary, 2022

In Orbit

Writer Director
Katie McNeice

Katie McNeice

Jaro Waldeck

Áine Ní Mhuirí 
Olwen Fouéré
Claire Loy
Michael-David McKernan
Sarah Kinlen

There was once an invisible optician, living in a strange and lonely world. Her story starts with a broken lens and the woman who taught her to see things differently.

Maura recounts her life story in an interview with the Head Archivist of the Human Experience Records. Hers is the greatest mission of all time, you see, because what bigger challenge can there be, than learning to love?

This LGBT sci-fi short is Katie McNeice’s self-funded directorial debut and has earned 57 awards to date, including a Special Jury Mention at the Galway Film Fleadh and a ZeBBie Nomination from the Writers Guild of Ireland for Best Short Script.


Photo by Stephen S T Bradley


McNeice’s work is marked by exceptionally strong screenwriting and explorations of character which are at once emotional and cinematic. With each new project she champions empathy and visibility for unheard voices, such as the older LGBT generation of IN ORBIT and the experience of intersex babies and their parents in the upcoming LAMBING.

She was recently nominated for an IFTA for Best Script with co-writer Graham Cantwell for indie feature film WHO WE LOVE, and was also nominated for a ZeBBie for Best Short Script with her debut short IN ORBIT in 2021.

McNeice continues to work on a slate of short films while also developing her feature directorial debut, an adaptation of Meg Grehan’s award-winning LGBT children’s novel THE DEEPEST BREATH published by Little Island Books.

She is also a full-time Senior Producer with global learning company HMH, working on animated and live action content for the US education system with a core advocacy for equity, inclusion and diversity.

sample Awards

Nominee, Irish Film & Television Academy Awards – Best Script – Film 2022
Rising Talent Award Winner, Kerry International Film Festival 2021
IMDb Script to Screen Award Winner, IMDb and FilmBath 2020

Katie is represented by Jasmine Daines Pilgrem of Lisa Richards Creatives.