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Capturing a crucial moment for women's rights, The 8th tells the incredible story of how Ireland overturned one of the world's most restrictive laws on abortion.


Film description: Capturing a crucial moment in women's rights, this is the story of how Ireland overturned one of the world's most restrictive laws on abortion. The film follows veteran campaigner Ailbhe Smyth and self-described glitter-activist Andrea Horan as they chart a bold strategy of grassroots activism to engineer the impossible and carry a traditionally conservative and religious electorate over the line to extend rights to women seeking an abortion. An urgent narrative, a cautionary tale and a roadmap for progressive reforms in a modern era where authoritarianism is on the rise, The 8th shows a country forging a new path at a time when reproductive rights are threatened around the world. 

"It's actually about more than what you're voting on -- while we're voting on reproductive health care, it's also about the value we're giving women in Irish society, saying we do value them and we do trust them." - Andrea Horan, The 8th

Access Screening: This film is captioned in English for audiences who are Deaf or hard of hearing

Watch at your own pace from March 18-26, or watch along with us: 

Thursday, March 18

  • 6:50 PM GMT  – Start watching the film on Barbican Cinema on Demand. 
  • 8:30 PM GMT – Join us for a live Q&A online. Free with RSVP.


We do not want the cost of entry to the films to be a barrier for participation in our events. If the price of buying a ticket to this film would prevent you from participating, please email the following address (filmticket@hrw.org) + we will send you a free ticket code. We have set aside a set # of tickets per film on a first come first-served basis. Once the free tickets are no longer available, the code will no longer work. For anyone that purchases a ticket, we appreciate your support. Your ticket purchase enables us to make tickets free for those who might otherwise be unable to watch. This also allows the festival to support the filmmakers for sharing their work in the festival, to support the arts organizations bringing this work to you.



Aideen Kane


Aideen Kane is the VP of Production at Fork Films. She is currently a producer on Women in Blue and Inequality (WT), feature documentaries for release in early 2021. Previous credits include Emmy-winning and nominated, feature-length and television documentaries, including: The Armor of Light (dirs. Abigail Disney & Kathleen Hughes), The Trials of Spring (dir. Gini Reticker), The Awful Truth (dir. Michael Moore), Face to Face: The Schappell Twins (dir. Ellen Weissbrod), and Voices of the Children (dir. Zuzana Justman). In Ireland she produced several award winning documentaries and documentary series for public television and is a producer on the international theatrical hit Alone it Stands.

Lucy Kennedy


Lucy Kennedy is a journalist and documentary filmmaker. She directed four episodes of the Netflix investigative documentary series Rotten including Lawyers, Guns & Honey and The Avocado Wars. She was the commissioning producer for three years of the Emmy-award-winning investigative series, Fault Lines on Al Jazeera. Over that period she directed and commissioned for the series; directing credits include Death on the Bakken Shale, One Day in Charkh and American Sheriff. Other work includes Explorer (National Geographic), Frontline (PBS), Need to Know & Wide Angle (WNET) & Prime Time (RTE). She is a graduate of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

Maeve O'Boyle


Maeve O’Boyle is an Emmy-award winning editor and producer. She edited The Education of Mohammad Hussein (HBO), which was shortlisted for an Academy Award. She co-produced and edited the Emmy-award-winning and 2014 IRE Award winning, Firestone and the Warlord (PBS). She also edited and co-produced Growing Up Trans (PBS), which won a DuPont Columbia award and co-wrote and edited Do I Sound Gay?, which premiered at TIFF and was awarded the runner up for People’s Choice Award. Other work includes Left of the Dial (HBO), Heat (PBS), 112 Weddings (HBO & BBC) and The Kids Grow Up (HBO), which premiered at IDFA and Full Frame and was awarded a special Jury prize at AFI Docs. She is currently co-directing and editing a feature documentary on the folk singer Joan Baez.