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Adelaide Film Festival unveils world premieres

Arts & Culture

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The Adelaide Film Festival team has “climbed a mountain of movies” to pick a basket of the best with world premieres including Rolf de Heer’s Charlie’s Country and Warwick Thornton’s The Darkside.

The full festival program of 166 films, themed “Screen Worship”, was released this morning by festival director Amanda Duthie at the Adelaide Studios, Glenside.

In another first, the film festival pays respects to the outdoor big screen, with a one night only drive-in double bill at the Adelaide Showgrounds.

The program includes new works from renowed SA director de Heer and works from Closer Productions, with Life in Movement director Sophie Hyde taking on her first fiction film, as well as international films from countries including East Timor, Turkey and South Korea.

World premieres will also include Rowan Woods’The Broken Shore, Adelaide film One Eyed Girl and documentaries All This Mayhem, Muriel Matters and Sons and Mothers. 

For the first time the festival, which runs from October 10-20, will also have a hub in the old Lil Miss Mexico space on Grenfell Street which will host premiere parties, talks and a live artist studio where new works will be created.

Duthie said the program was the robust  result of the selection team’s viewing.

“We all watch, talk about it, and have robust discussions about why something should or should not be in there,” Duthie said.

“There can end up being a number of champions for a work, so it’s not just an exciting process but also creates an exciting program because you know its not just one person’s taste.”

The festival pre-released several shows, including John Curran’s Tracks, starring Mia Wasikoswka and announced that Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton would be the patrons of the festival.

Scott Hicks will be presented with this year’s Don Dunstan award for his contribution to the SA film industry.

“He is a major film force here in Australia the diversity of his work is incredible, everything from Glass: A Portrait of Philip in Twelve Parts, to Shine, to these incredibly popular more recent films he’s been making out of America,” Duthie said.

“But he hasn’t moved his family, he calls SA his home and he’s also incredibly supportive of young film makers and the industry in SA so I think he deserves to be honoured in this way.”

The investment films, commissioned works which include Hyde and de Heer’s films, have helped to build the festival’s international reputation.

“There are so many people at Cannes Film Festival … who I don’t know if they could point to Adelaide on a map, but were asking about the festival because that investment fund has such as reputation of picking winners,” Duthie said

The fund has previously supported Snowtown, Sampson and Delilah, Ten Canoes and Life in Movement.

Hyde’s 52 Tuesdays was shot every Tuesday over a year, telling the story of a young girl who is only able to see her mother, who is undergoing a sex change, once a week for a year.

“52 is coming from an SA based production company [Closer] who are incredibly innovative; they push the boundaries with their creative approach, very ambitious in the stories they tell and when that ambition ambition is reached it is marriage of creativity, a different narrative approach and is also full of heart,” Duthie said.

“It was such a big bold approach to telling this story we absolutely had to come on board.

“Because it’s filmed over a year, it is not just cosmetic changes but you get to watch [the main character] grow up on screen which is such a privileged opportunity and so clever and so full of heart. It’s just a really remarkable film.”

The film will also release a mobile phone app asking the audience to tell what they are doing every Tuesday afternoon for 52 weeks.

For the full program see the Adelaide Film Festival website.

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