Viva filmmakers Paddy Breathnach and Mark O'Halloran have said they feel it is vital to maintain and increase funding of the Irish Film Board as talent needs to be nurtured.

O'Halloran penned the script for Viva, which was long-listed for an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language Film earlier this year, and teamed up with director Breathnach to bring their story of a young hairdresser living in Havana with aspirations of becoming a drag performer to the big screen.

The film received funding from the Irish Film Board and O'Halloran told RTÉ Entertainment about the importance of the seed money for the Irish film industry.

"Without the funding there would be no film industry and the film industry pays for itself in the long term, in the profile it gives the country but also in box office receipts etc etc, but that seed money that the film board offers is absolutely vital," O'Halloran said.

Breathnach echoed his sentiments and said that increased funding allows for increased vision. "It's completely vital, and also, the thing is that the less funding they have, the less ability they have to have vision in some way.

"They can take chances if they have a bit more funding, they can look at things and say 'this could be a really interesting space for us to move into' whereas otherwise, if it's reduced too much it becomes maintenance rather than growth."

"And at the moment there's a whole wave of new talent coming along and they have to be nurtured as well as everybody else so it's vital that funding is maintained and increased," O'Halloran added.

Viva is in Irish cinemas this Friday, August 19

Check out Sinead Brennan's full interview with Paddy Breathnach and Mark O'Halloran here: