The coming-of-age drama An Cailín Ciúin (The Quiet Girl) has been honoured at the Berlin International Film Festival, a first for an Irish-language feature film at one of the world's most renowned cinema showcases.

Directed by Colm Bairéad and based on the story Foster by author Claire Keegan, An Cailín Ciúin won the Grand Prix of the Generation Kplus International Jury for Best Film and received a special mention from the children's jury after its world premiere at the festival.

In an interview with RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Bairéad said of his debut feature's success: "We're over the moon and we're a little tired today after some celebrations last night."

Bairéad told the programme that the Berlin International Film Festival is one of the top festivals in the world and "even to have been selected for the festival in the first place, that felt like an award in and of itself".

An Cailín Ciúin will go on release in cinemas later this year

"But then, to actually pick up some recognition and award at the festival is just a real dream come true for us," he added.

Minister for Arts Catherine Martin described it as "a truly remarkable achievement".

Billed as "a spell-binding portrait of an Irish childhood", An Cailín Ciúin follows the experiences of nine-year-old Cáit, played by Catherine Clinch, as she spends the summer with foster parents, played by Carrie Crowley and Andrew Bennett.

The film was funded by Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland, TG4 and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland [BAI] as part of the Cine4 scheme to develop feature films in Irish.

An Cailín Ciúin will open the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival on 23 February and will go on release in cinemas later this year.

It's been Louis Marcus was awarded a Silver Bear at the Berlin Film festival for his short film in Irish called Fleá Ceoil in 1967

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