In Orbit

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?

She begins on the day she meets Amy, a bright academic with broken glasses. For the first time in forty years, Maura wants to share her life. The only catch is leaving behind the world as she knows it.


In Orbit is the directorial debut from Katie McNeice, who also wrote and produced this self-funded project. This short film has received 37 awards internationally and has just been nominated for a Zebbie by the Writers Guild of Ireland.

McNeice is a UCC Film MA alumna whose other credits include Co-Writer on the Irish feature film ‘Lily’ (currently in post-production).

Upcoming shorts include Focail, Baile, Croí (Words, Home, Heart), which explores themes of home, love and grief through the Irish language. This project is the 2020 winner of the Comórtas Fisín pitching competition. Lambing explores intersex and gender norms in the context of rural Ireland from the vantage point of a new parent, and is the winner of the 2020 IMDb Script to Screen Award.

She is one of 25 successful applicants in the first Screen Ireland Mentorship Scheme and has been paired with Writer Director Ruth Treacy of Tailored Films. Katie is also a full-time Senior Producer with the global learning company HMH, producing audio, live action and motion graphic content for the US education system.



“A bold sci-fi vision from debut director Katie McNeice, whose capable queering of genre with a flashback lesbian love story stands out as one of the most admirably ambitious efforts of the slate…shaking off the lingering strictures of a country too long consumed in conservatism and coming to terms with the repressive scars left in its wake.”

– Fleadh Reflections – The Irish Short Film Programme | Gearr Scannain

A work of unique intent in its striking sci-fi high-concept…Where many queer films have looked to the past’s untold stories and the lingering shadows it casts, In Orbit offers a rare advance unpacking of the movement’s future: the emotional impacts yet to be felt and the likely lasting legacies of present struggles.

– Irish Shorts at the 27th GAZE International LGBT Film Festival | Gearr Scannain

“I knew from the get-go [music] would be crucial to pulling off the emotional punches in the film because of how it’s structured. The poetic language in it really needed an extra meter so the words didn’t land alone; they needed to fall with all the feeling of musical notes.”

– In Depth In Orbit with Katie McNeice | Film in Dublin

“I’ve noticed that the stronger the director-composer relationship and understanding is, the better the scores are that I write. I  think we really connected on topics of internalised emotions, aspects that I love to explore through music, such as the quest to belong but also the struggle to emerge transformed and more connected to others.”

– Scannáin talks In Orbit and composing with Emer Kinsella | Scannáin

“In Orbit just screened at the Galway Film Fleadh and there was a lot of buzz around it.”

“I saw it! It’s amazing, the ambition there. It’s a beautifully contained sci-fi short. Obviously first films are capable of this sort of thing, but it surprised me a lot.”

For her debut there’s such vision there and she’s actually a former volunteer of the festival. It’s just so amazing to see her come back with her short film to GAZE. It really means a lot to us.”

– Scannáin Podcast #27 with Darren Mooney, Ronan Doyle & Roisín Geraghty

“In Orbit is an arthouse LGBT short; an elderly woman looks back on the greatest experience of her life, which was basically finding her ability to love.

“The script won four awards internationally. I think one of the reasons it’s done so well is that it’s something that’s never really been looked at. There are people in Ireland in their 70s and 80s who’ve never been on a date or held someone’s hand, and they’re going to live the rest of their lives by themselves in empty houses.”

– Cork Film Festival: Short and sweet does the trick | The Irish Examiner

Screenplay Reviews

“Interesting, topical and emotionally rich…it’s the kind of mature and intelligent project Ireland should be producing right now.”

Tomm Moore Cartoon Saloon Founder & Academy Award Nominee

“A poetic and emotional piece…a lovely and heart-wrenching version of a science fiction memoir.”

Screenplay Juror LGBT Toronto Film Festival


Áine Ní Mhuirí | Elderly Maura

End of sentence, Brooklyn, Broken

Claire J. Loy | Maura

Casualty, The Outpost, Beyond the Woods

Sarah J. Kinlen | Amy

The Cured, Writing Home, Cat Calls

Olwen Fouéré | ELDERLY AMY

Nightflyers, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindewald

Michael-David McKernan | THE INTERVIEWER

Quantico, Red Rock3 Friends

Joe McNeice | Toddler Maura

Well done on your first film, bud


Katie McNeice | Writer & director

Lily (Feature Film, Co-Writer), Flaneur

Jaro Waldeck | Cinematographer

QED, The Refuge, The Donor 

Emer Kinsella | Composer

In Full Bloom, Jungle, Sense8

Ivo Andrade | VFX Supervisor

Leandro Arouca | COLOUR GRADING

Element Post

Caimin Agnew | Sound Recordist

Detainment, Lily, The New Music


Original Score