This was the 40th edition of the Contest and was produced once again by RTE for the third time in succession. RTE that year were also celebrating the 30th anniversary of their first entry into Eurovision and the 25th of their first win.
Indiana Jones star Alison Doody was the original choice for the role of presenter and entered into negotiations with RTE, but in the end pulled out. Mary Kennedy, who had previously understudied Doireann Ni Briain for the 1981 contest was eventually chosen to present the show.
The spectacular opening sequence involved a 90 second video entitled 'A Day In The Life of Ireland', followed by a retrospective of 40 years of Eurovision before the cameras panned onto the stage covered by drapes which were pulled away to reveal a set containing giant revolving screens, a disappearing staircase and a large background which linked up to the rest of the stage amid dazzling fireworks. Alan Farquarson, was the designer.
In order to help ease the financial burden of producing its third Eurovision in successive years, RTE considered several options as to how to put together this show without financially crippling itself. One of the options included locating it at a sound stage at Wicklows Ardmore Studios in front of a small invited audience outsourcing it to independent production companies. Another idea (and one that almost came to fruition) was to co-produce the show with BBC Northern Ireland and locate it in Belfast as this was the era when peace finally came to the North. In the end and due to several security and logistical reasons, it returned to the Point Theatre solely as an RTE production.
There were allegations that RTE made every effort to ensure that the song they chose to represent Ireland would be one that had no possibility of winning. Indeed the song that was chosen (Dreamin performed by Eddie Friel), was mired in controversy as it was accused of plagiarism. In spite of sounding to similar to another song, RTE allowed it to go through with many claiming that RTE were delighted with the negative publicity and therefore few of the juries would vote for it.