Ellen O’Mara Sullivan
Ellen O’Mara Sullivan and her husband, James M. Sullivan, started what scholars have called the most prolific indigenous film company of the silent period, the Film Company of Ireland (FCOI). The company began trading in Ireland in 1916, producing primarily historical melodramas and romantic comedies and dramas, all focusing on Irish culture and/or the historical battle for political autonomy from Great Britain. The films had wide release in Dublin and the provinces, and a select few opened in Great Britain and the U.S. Though Sullivan and the FCOI have been the subject of some study, O’Mara Sullivan has received little scholarly attention. Private collections and archival material, however, point to her active participation as the FCOI’s co-director, running the company with her husband until her death in 1919.
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