Irish actress Saoirse Ronan is to receive the Maureen O’Hara Award at next month’s Kerry Film Festival.

The ‘Atonement’ and ‘Byzantium’ actress is expected to attend the October 9-25 festival to receive the award, which is presented to women who have excelled in film.

Ronan’s involvement in this year’s Kerry Film Festival coincides with the announcement of the festival’s programme.

It will open on October 9 with a screening of ‘Pilgrim Hill’, the acclaimed debut feature from local filmmaker Gerard Barrett.

The feature won the Bingham Ray New Talent Award at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh and was filmed in North Kerry.

Other highlights on the festival programme include more than 100 short films, including BAFTA-winning short ‘Pitch Black Heist’, starring Michael Fassbender and Liam Cunningham.

The judging panel of the Short Film Awards this year will include Dave Fanning, Paul Duane (Barbaric Genius), writer, director and producer Terry George (Some Mother’s Son) and Jam Media’s John Rice (Roy).

Irish features screening include ‘The Rás Tailteann’, ‘Shamrocracy’ and ‘The End of the Earth is My Home’, as well as accomplished filmmaker Tom Tywker’s ‘Three / Drei’.

The festival, which is now in its 13th year, takes place in venues across the county between October 9 to 25, featuring in Tralee between October 9–13; Listowel (16–18); Kenmare (18) and Waterville (25).