Belfast-born filmmaker premieres debut feature at city’s film festival

Embargoed for release until 6th October 2022.

Passing Through, written and directed by David Walter Hall, will premiere at the Strand Arts Centre on Wednesday 9th November at 8pm.

Filmmaker David Walter Hall is looking forward to the first public screening of his debut feature film, the tense family drama Passing Through, at the 22nd Belfast Film Festival in November, whose programme was released today.

The film stars Australian actor and TV personality Mark Little, known to many from his stint as Joe Mangel on the soap Neighbours. It was shot in and around the town of Agde in the South of France in the summer of 2019.

Mark plays Tom, a recently retired teacher who perhaps rashly has upped sticks with his new partner to buy a house together in France. All is well until Tom’s estranged son turns up unannounced, travelling with his French girlfriend, and old wounds are quickly reopened.

View the trailer at

Born in 1983, the director grew up in South Belfast. He attended Methody, where he first got involved in drama and school plays. He studied philosophy at Cambridge University, and during his three years there wrote and directed two single-act plays, later taking them both to the Edinburgh festival.

He went on to write numerous plays, performed professionally in London and elsewhere, before embarking on this, his first film project. Production began following a chance meeting in a New York bar with Patrick Richter, one half (with Yajaira Marie Quinto) of US-based production team P+Y Films. Patrick had been looking for projects for his fledgling company, and with the script still ony three-quarters finished, he saw some promise in the idea Dave had been working on.

Dave recalls, “We were both there in the afternoon just killing time, with not much else to do. We got chatting, and a couple of years later we were still chatting, on location in France, about to start shooting our first feature film.”

“Being able to give the film its premiere in Belfast is a dream come true. It’s the culmination of years of hard work, joy and frustration. It’s been the greatest adventure of my life so far and the most intense and rewarding of learning experiences. I’m so happy to be back in the city where I grew up, finally able to share what I’ve created with local audiences.”

“Finishing this film has been a labour of love. When we wrapped filming, the whole production team were on a high, charged with momentum, but then Covid hit and everyone’s lives changed. Post-production was slow, but this film has meant so much to me, and it’s become a huge part of my life for the past five years, and more than most directors I think, I’ve become involved in every aspect of it, from recording the music to the marketing.”

The film’s title comes from a song by Dick Blakeslee, popularised by Leonard Cohen, which echoes the subtle religious symbolism found in the story.

More information can be found at



The Belfast Film Festival, now in its 22nd year, takes place annually each November at venues around the city.

The director is known as Dave (rather than David), and only uses his full and middle name, David Walter Hall, for official purposes. His preferred pronouns are he/him.


Dave is available for interviews! Please email to set up a time to talk or call or WhatsApp 07714954705. Dave can be found on Instagram @davidwalterhall.

Photographs for publication

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