Sydney Film Festival 2014

By November 20, 2013 Entries

Entries are now open for the 61st annual Sydney Film Festival, which is set to immerse Sydneysiders in the world of cinema from Wednesday 4th June until Sunday 15th June 2014.

Festival Director Nashen Moodley said, “As we prepare for the 61st edition of Sydney Film Festival in June 2014, we invite filmmakers to submit their films to the Festival for consideration. The programming team looks forward to viewing these submissions and presenting a selection of the very best films at the next Festival.”

Submissions for the Festival are being accepted through FilmFestivalLife and will close on Thursday 27th February 2014.

“We are thrilled to be working with FilmFestivalLife to make the submission process easier for entrants and to ensure that filmmakers across Australia and the international community have access to the Sydney Film Festival platform,” said Mr Moodley.

Last year, out of the 2,500 films submitted, 192 films were invited to the Festival, screening to an incredible 140,000 attendees.

2014 will mark the 45th year of the Festival presenting its Australian short film competition, making it the oldest short film competition in Australia. Since 1970, the competition has served as launch pad for emerging Australian film talent, spring-boarding countless directors, producers and actors down a path towards international success.

Past winners have included film luminaries from across Australia’s creative landscape including Chris Noonan, who went on to write and direct international cinema smash BABE; Don McAlpine, who received an Oscar nomination for MOULIN ROUGE; and Jack Thompson, who has starred in numerous Australian classics including SUNDAY TOO FAR AWAY, THE MAN FROM SNOWY RIVER and BREAKER MORANT.

Other former winners Phil Noyce, Jane Campion, Rolf de Heer, Alex Proyas and George Miller, have managed to carve acclaimed careers for themselves within the film industry, both domestically and abroad.

Entries are open to features, documentaries and short films (under 40 minutes) in all categories of the Festival program, including:

·         The Australian Documentary Competition – which awards a cash prize of $10,000;

·         The Dendy Awards for Australian Short Films Live Action Award and Best Director – both winners receive cash prizes of $5,000 sponsored by Dendy Cinemas;

·         The Yoram Gross Animation Award (cash prize $4,000).

Dendy Cinemas have been proud to sponsor the Awards for 26 years, and the winner of their Live Action Award is now eligible for Academy Award consideration. Also eligible is the winner of the Yoram Gross Animation Award. Yoram and Sandra Gross have sponsored the Yoram Gross Animation Award since 1987.

Whether it be a feature film debut, the latest short or an immersive documentary, Sydney Film Festival invites filmmakers to submit their films now for the 2014 event.

Both the Dendy Awards for Australian Short films and the Australian Documentary Competition are open exclusively to Australian films.

A small fee applies with the submission. Before entering, Festival organisers urge all entrants to read the submission requirements closely to ensure that all entries meet premiere status and broader eligibility requirements.

Head to: for full eligibility criteria and submission details.

About the Dendy Awards for Australian Short Films:

First debuting in 1970 with sponsorship from Benson and Hedges, Dendy have been sponsoring the Australian Short Film competition since 1989. The awards in this category are: Best Live Action Short Film ($5000 sponsored by Dendy Cinemas); Yoram Gross Award for Best Animated Short Film ($4000); Rouben Mamoulian Award for Best Director Overall ($5000 sponsored by Dendy Cinemas) and the winners of the first two sections are Academy Award eligible.

Throughout the 44 years of the competition, young directors have started on the road to fame and fortune with a screening at the Festival’s short film awards.  To name a few: producers/directors Byron Kennedy and George Miller (1973, Frieze, An Underground Film); Phil Noyce (1974, Castor and Pollux); Gillian Armstrong (1976, The Singer and the Dancer); Paul Cox (1977, We Are All Alone My Dear); Jane Campion (1984, A Girl’s Own Story); Bill Bennett (1984, Shipwrecked); Rolf de Heer (1984, Tread Softly…); Sue Brooks (1985, The Drover’s Wife); Alex Proyas (1985, After Hours); David Caesar (1987, Shoppingtown); Rowan Woods (1987, Kenny’s Love); Samantha Lang (1995, Audacious); Ivan Sen (2000, Wind).

Quotes from former winners:

Jane Campion – Director, 1984, for Girl’s Own Story: “When I won the Rouben Mamoulian Award for Girl’s Own Story (1984), that was the first award I’d ever won and it is still the best award.  I knew that it could be a career-changer.”

Sarah Drofenik – Producer 2002, for Dad’s Clock: “”The publicity and recognition we have gained from the Award has been invaluable especially as the Award is highly regarded within Australia.  Already SBS Independent has recognised the Award and placed a listing of it on its website, which is great for our future relationship with them.  The prize money is also appreciated and will be enjoyed by Dik Jarman (the Director) and myself. We are also returning a percentage of the prize money back into marketing the film, as the film is only nine months old and therefore monies over the next 18 months is much needed.  It is always an honour to receive an Award, but the honour is more greatly felt when the recognition is local, and as the Sydney Film Festival is the premier festival in Australia we are delighted with the recognition.”

Gillian Armstrong – Director, 1976, for The Singer and the Dancer: “I remember how important these awards were to struggling film-makers. In 1976 when I won the Fiction category for The Singer and the Dancer, I think I was $2,000 in debt from finishing the film.  I think the prize money was $1,000 or $1,200 and it was gone the next week.  It went on paying the bills.”

Sarah Watt – Director, 2002, for Happiness: “I have long thought that animation is a technique not a genre, and that I make fiction films primarily, so it was fantastic to have that recognised in such a high profile and prestigious way as winning a Dendy award.  I am really thankful to the Dendy organisation for sponsoring these awards and would like you to please pass on to them how much I appreciate their support of Australian short films and film makers.  I know the Dendys have some very high profile and successful alumni, and that many consider the Dendy’s a great way to move on to bigger things.  But I am a serial short film maker, and therefore they are even more important.  Without events like the Dendy’s, my films don’t get shown in theatres, and perhaps that means not at all.  The Dendys in particular attract a great audience and is held in a fantastic cinema. For me, crafting my films on 35mm over a long period of time, it is the best end result I could wish for as well as being inspirational to start a new film, which I will be able to do with the generous prize money that the Dendy organisation awarded me.”

About Film Festival Life:

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