Incredible lineup of Australian films set for the 2017 Gold Coast Film Festival


Out Of The Shadows

This year’s Gold Coast Film Festival boasts an incredible lineup of new Australian films including Ben Young’s highly anticipated Perth-shot thriller, Hounds of Love.

You can find the complete list of Australian films screening at this year’s festival below.

The 15th annual Gold Coast Film Festival will screen 32 feature films from 13 countries, including four world premieres, nine Australian premieres and eight Queensland premieres, plus a host of short films, events, panels, and intimate Q&A’s with filmmakers from 19-30 April.

The city’s flagship film event has confirmed the Queensland premiere of fast-paced, adventure film Pork Pie for the Opening Night of the 2017 Gold Coast Film Festival on Wednesday 19 April, with director Matt Murphy, producer Tom Hern, executive producer Alan Harris and star James Rolleston attending.

Inspired by the iconic 1981 Kiwi classic, Goodbye Pork Pie, the film captures the story of mismatched trio of accidental outlaws, played by Dean O’Gorman (The Hobbit), Ashleigh Cummings (Puberty Blues) and James Rolleston (Boy), as they speed across New Zealand in a stolen MINI Cooper on a madcap caper filled with unexpected detours and hilarious encounters.

The Festival has also secured the Australian premiere of the much-anticipated sci-fi film, SFV1: The Osiris Child, to screen at the festival and will be joined by director Shane Abbess and actor Isabel Lucas (Transformers, Daybreakers, Home and Away) for an intimate Q&A session following the film’s screening on Friday 21 April.

Hounds of Love

The Osiris Child follows Kane as he races to find his daughter before the planet they are on is destroyed and plays like an exciting mash-up of Star Wars, Firefly and Fortress. 

Gold Coast Film Festival Director Lucy Fisher said the 2017 program is proving to be the biggest program in its 15-year history and the team is pleased to introduce some of the most anticipated films from Australia and around the world.

“This year is expected to be the biggest Gold Coast Film Festival to date, with 120 film and film-related events taking over the entire city, offering something for everyone, from internationally acclaimed dramas, comedies and genre films to locally made indie gems,” she said.

“The 15th annual Festival also marks a number of firsts this year including the introduction of our Movie Locations Tour, which takes guests on a 3-hour journey visiting over 20 films including Kong: Skull Island, The Shallows, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, San Andreas and Muriel’s Wedding.

“The Gold Coast Film Festival has cemented itself as a strong platform for film lovers, aspiring filmmakers and the screen industry to be entertained, inspired and be challenged, inviting thought provoking ideas from the films, workshops and events.

The Gold Coast Film Festival will screen the Queensland premiere of Sundance Film Festival favourite, XX, on Friday 28 April. It is the first horror anthology film to be completely written and directed by female filmmakers, featuring the directional debut of the talented Annie Clark, also known as popular American musician St Vincent.

What If It Works?

Fans of Emma Watson and Tom Hanks will also have the chance to see sci-fi thriller, The Circle, based on the prescient novel by iconic author Dave Eggers. The film is a thrilling look at the darker side of technology and explores the way it is changing perceptions of privacy, identity and memory. The film features an all-star cast including Emma Watson, Tom Hanks, Patton Oswalt and the late Bill Paxton.

The Festival will host the Queensland Premiere of British-American war drama, The Zookeeper’s Wife, which tells the incredible true story of a Warsaw zookeeper couple, Jan and Antonia Zabinski, who saved the lives of over 300 Jews during WWII by hiding them inside their zoo. Directed by New Zealand filmmaker Niki Caro (Whale Rider), the film features a career defining turn from Jessica Chastain and is based on the best-selling non-fiction novel by Diane Ackerman.

Directors, writers, cast and crew members will attend a number of film premieres for special Q&A sessions following the films including writer/ director Gerald Rascionato, on Wednesday 26 April, for his upcoming thriller Cage Dive, writer/director Romi Trower for her upcoming drama What If It Works, and Academy Award winning sound designer David White, as part of a Q&A for the World Premiere of Out Of The Shadows.

Australian action thriller Event Zero, set in Sydney and based on a terrorist attack, will screen its World premiere as the festival’s Closing Night film on Sunday 30 April at The Arts Centre Gold Coast. Following the screening, audiences are invited to join a Q&A with the film’s cast and crew to discuss the politically charged thriller and its journey to screen.

CEO of The Arts Centre Gold Coast Criena Gehrke said the city’s cultural precinct and the Gold Coast Film Festival are a perfect match and she is looking forward to the festival line-up.

“Over the coming years the Arts Centre will grow into a precinct that is the beating heart of arts and culture on the coast so it’s wonderful to be able to work with and support the Gold Coast Film Festival, a key fixture on Queensland’s cultural events calendar ” she said.

“The Gold Coast is proving itself as the perfect destination for cultural and sporting events and thanks to the Gold Coast Film Festival, we are thrilled to welcome film fans and screen culture aficionados to the precinct.”

The 2017 Gold Coast Film Festival also brings a host of fun and engaging film-related events across the city, including a brand new activation space at Robina Town Centre. The Centre will transform into a film-lovers haven with the launch of ‘Documentary Season’ at Event Cinemas Robina, featuring four enlightening documentaries that will immerse audiences into the lives of a young weightlifter, an indigenous ballet dancer, a visionary artist and an Australian charity worker.

On Friday 28 April, the centre will also feature ‘Brewed at the Kitchens’ – an evening of coffee demonstrations, espresso martinis, tastings and a unique film screening of Barista, which follows competitors at the World Barista Championship.

Film magic will also touch the southern end of the Gold Coast as it receives an entirely new film event – Surf Classics at Coolangatta. The two-day free event will celebrate the swinging 60’s and surf culture with a night of entertainment, competition and classic cinema with Endless Summer on top of the stunning Kirra Hill on Saturday 29 April, followed by a screening of family-favourite Surfs Up on Sunday 30 April.

Also new to the Gold Coast Film Festival is Hopfest: Pulp Fiction in the Brewery, taking place at Burleigh Brewing Co on Saturday 22 April; Script to Screen with India Dupre on Sunday 23 April, featuring a free live script reading of Stripped which tells the true story of Margaret Dupre, a colorful character and single British mother who became a local 80’s icon; plus Anzac Movie on the Green, a special 30th anniversary screening of classic Australian film, The Lighthorsemen, to be introduced by the film’s director Simon Wincer who will also take part in a special Q&A session after the film on Saturday 29 April.

SFV1- The Osiris Child

Award-winning producer Sue Maslin will be the special guest speaker at the third annual Women In Film lunch at QT Gold Coast’s Bazaar on Friday 21 April. Presented by Screen Queensland, the Women In Film lunch recognises the contribution and achievement of women in film and television in Australia.

Maslin’s latest film The Dressmaker, starring Kate Winslet, opened at the number one spot at the Australian and New Zealand box offices and was awarded the highest grossing Australian film for 2015/2016 at the Australian International Movie Convention. Maslin is a strong advocate for women in screen, and is currently Patron of Women in Film and Television Victoria and President of the Natalie Miller Fellowship.

On Saturday 22 April, the Gold Coast Film Festival will present multi-award winning Australian actor Deborah Mailman with the national screen industry award – the Chauvel Award, as part of the Gold Coast Film Festival and welcome the actor and audiences to a special event: David Stratton In Conversation With Deborah Mailman.

The night will be an intimate look at Mailman’s career on and off the screen, accompanied by footage from her films and moderated by film critic and previous Chauvel Award recipient, David Stratton.

Also attending the Gold Coast Film Festival is the esteemed Chauvel Award committee’s Jan Chapman, producer of the AFI Best Film winner, Lantana and Academy Award® winner The Piano and 2002 Chauvel Award recipient, actor, producer and AFI Chair Alan Finney, 2007 Chauvel Award recipient, Australian film critic and TV personality David Stratton, major festival sponsor Screen Queensland’s CEO Tracey Vieira, Professor Emeritus Bruce Molloy, producer Melanie Coombs and actor, producer and 2016 Chauvel Award recipient Claudia Karvan.

The Festival has also attracted Australian film industry heavy-hitters to its REELLife screen industry panels, a series of 14 panels covering a range of screen industry topics. On Saturday 22 April, highly experienced producers Jan Chapman and Sue Maslin will to discuss their experiences with producing and provide tips on balancing time and money in the ‘Producing: Money Vs Time’ panel session; and on Friday 28 April, the festival will host distinguished guests, Academy Award winning sound designer David White and AFI Award winning composer Christopher Gordon, for an ‘All Ears. Sound Design and Composition’ panel, where they will share their tips on crafting solid sound design and exceptional audio experiences.

Other special events at the 2017 Festival include Movie Trivia Night; Zoolander Model Boat Party; SIPFest, an annual short film competition featuring 12 short 10-minute cinematic masterpieces by emerging filmmakers from around Australia; and the screening of some the best from the London Short Film Festival, the premiere UK showcase for cutting-edge UK independent film, at SIPFest.

With two long weekends on either side of the 11-day festival, it’s the perfect opportunity to book a visit to the sunny Gold Coast and the Gold Coast Film Festival.

Tickets for all events and films are now on sale at

Event Zero
World Premiere
Directed by Enzo Tedeschi
Starring Ash Ricardo, Zoe Carides, Nicholas Hope, Harry Pavlidis, Andy Rodoreda
When a terrorist attack hits the Sydney subway releasing a highly contagious virus into the population, Detective Leyla Nassar (Offsping’s Ash Ricardo) must race across the city and find the culprits while the Deputy Premier Pamela Laird (Zoe Carides) battles power hungry politicians eager to use the catastrophe for nefarious means. This pulse-pounding action thriller plays like a season of TV’s 24 set in Sydney and crammed into a breathlessly paced 100 minutes. With a star-studded Aussie cast including the legendary Zoe Carides and Nicholas Hope (Bad Boy Bubby), Event Zero is a politically charged thrill ride sure to result in some controversial post-screening conversation.
Screenings Sunday 30 April, 7pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast
Q&A Session Join cast and crew on the red carpet and for a Q&A after the film

SFV1: The Osiris Child
Australian Premiere
Directed by Shane Abbess
Starring Daniel Macpherson, Kellan Lutz, Teagan Croft, Isabel Lucas, Rachael Griffiths, Temuera Morrison
This supremely ambitious science fiction spectacle from Australian filmmaker Shane Abbess is packed to the brim with breathtaking action set-pieces and extraordinary FX. We follow Daniel Macpherson’s Kane as he races to find his daughter before the planet they are on is destroyed.
With a stellar cast including Kellan Lutz, Isabel Lucas, Rachael Griffiths and Temeura Morrison, Osiris Child plays like an exciting mash-up of Star Wars, Firefly and Fortress. Abbess has magically made a gigantic action-packed spectacle for a fraction of the budget of his Hollywood counterparts. This film will take your breath away.
Screenings Friday 21 April, 6pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast; Sunday 23 April, 7pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast
Q&A Session Join director Shane Abbess and actor Isabel Lucas for a Q&A following the screening on Friday 21 April.

Hounds of Love
Directed by Ben Young
Starring Ashleigh Cummings, Emma Booth, Stephen Curry, Susie Porter
After confronting audiences at international festivals, this bold, perverse thriller is set to polarise local audiences. When a young girl (Ashleigh Cummings) is abducted by a disturbed, murderous couple (Emma Booth and Stephen Curry, who pulls a shocking career detour to equal John Jarratt’s in Wolf Creek), she realises that her only hope for survival is to drive a wedge between her captors before it’s too late. An original local thriller of the first order, Hounds of Love will leave you shaken and exhilarated.
Screenings Friday 21 April, 8:45pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast; Wednesday 26 April, 1pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast

Cage Dive
Australian Premiere
Directed by Gerald Rascionato
Starring Megan Peta Hill, Josh Potthoff, Joel Hogan
Three American friends travel to Australia with one goal – cage dive with a great white shark. But when a freak wave capsizes their boat they are are left fighting for their lives in shark infested waters. Debut Australian director Gerald Rascionato takes a simple concept and packs it full of frighteningly inventive set-pieces while breathing life back into the found-footage genre. If you thought you had got over your fear of sharks, think again. CAGE DIVE is set to make a whole new generation afraid of going into the water.
Screenings Wednesday 26 April, 7:15pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast; Thursday 27 April, 6:30pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast.
Q&A Session Join writer/director Gerald Rascionato for a Q&A following the Wednesday screening

Out Of The Shadows
World Premiere
Directed by Dee McLachlan
Starring Kendal Rae, Goran D. Kleut, Madison Haley, Lisa Chappel, Jake Ryan
Starring rising Australian actress Kendal Rae (The Shannara Chronicles) and directed by veteran local filmmaker Dee McLachlan (The Jammed), Out Of The Shadows introduces us to a young couple who discover that their new dream house holds some horrific secrets. Playing like a frightening Aussie mash up of Rosemary’s Baby and The Exorcist, this elegantly mounted thriller features a gorgeously baroque score from awarding winning composer Christopher Gordon and was filmed in the lush surrounds of the local Tweed Shire hinterland.
Screenings Saturday 29 April, 8:30pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast
Q&A Session Join the filmmakers for a Q&A following the screening

What If It Works?
Australian Premiere
Directed by Romi Trower
Starring Luke Ford, Anna Samson, Brooke Satchwell, Karin Fairfax
Australian actress and producer Romi Trower makes her directorial debut in this utterly charming romantic comedy featuring Luke Ford (Animal Kingdom), Brooke Satchwell and a star-making turn from Anna Samson. Lovingly filmed in the colorful, street art filled laneways of Melbourne, Adrian is a tech-nerd with OCD who meets Grace, an artist with multiple personality disorder. Their relationship can’t work, it shouldn’t work, but what if it works?
Q&A Session Join director Romi Trower for a Q&A following the Friday screening

Lazy Bones
Queensland Premiere
Directed by Michael Jones
Starring Jackson Tozer, Fabiana Weiner, Roy Larkin, Eva Seymour, Tegan Crowley
Ben is a wannabe stand-up comedian who spends his days driving an Uber and aimlessly floating through life. Is there more to life than this? Lazybones is a charmingly naturalistic slice-of-life from up and coming creative duo Caitlin Farrugia and Michael Jones. With a semi-improvised style the film captures a generational malaise with relatable humour and a marvellous supporting cast including Francis Greenslade, Paul Verhoven and Tegan Higginbotham.
Screenings Thursday 27 April, 10am at BCC Coolangatta; Saturday 29 April, 4pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast
Q&A Session Join director and writer for a Q&A following the Saturday screening

Digital Athletes: The Road To Seat League
World Premiere
Directed by Josh Hale
Starring Stuart Lumsden, Reece Madam, Kyle McCallion, Krystal Shuttleworth
This hilarious mockumentary follows an ambitious event promoter as he tries to launch a new national championship based around video gaming. Inviting the five top gamers from around the country, the road to seat league is paved with bizarre characters and amusing detours. Produced entirely on the Gold Coast with a local cast and crew, Josh Hale’s debut feature film is inspired by the greats in the genre from Spinal Tap, to Best In Show and even The Office, but infused with an Aussie edge that is entirely unique. Digital Athletes is a genuinely uproarious shot of fresh energy in the local comedy scene.
Screenings Thursday 27 April, 7:15pm at The Arts Centre Gold Coast
Q&A Session Join the filmmakers for a Q&A after the film

Directed by Douglas Watkin
Starring Ella Havelka
Ella Havelka is the first indigenous dancer ever to join the Australian Ballet and this moving documentary follows her journey from rural Australia to one of the most prestigious dance companies in the world. The film gives us a rare glimpse into the high-impact world of professional ballet while also presenting an intimate portrait of a young girl who is discovering her indigenous identity. An inspirational story for audiences of all ages, including little prospective ballerinas.
Screening Sunday 30 April, 2pm at Event Cinemas Robina
Q&A Session Join producer Veronica Fury and director Douglas Watkin for a Q&A after the screening

Uncontained Love: Love > Fear
World Premiere
Directed by Jude Kalman
For over a decade now, a family from the Gold Coast have quietly driven an initiative that delivers shipping containers filled with educational supplies, medical equipment and other household goods to communities in need throughout Africa. Directed by Gold-Coast filmmaker Jude Kalman, this immersive and important film interviews families and children displaced by crisis and explores the motivation behind those mobilised to help.
Screenings Thursday 20 April, 6:30pm at Event Cinemas Robina
Q&A Session Join director Jude Kalman for a Q&A following the screening

Directed by James Bogle
Starring Brett Whiteley
Rebel. Genius. Visionary. Iconic artist Brett Whiteley reshaped the Australian arts landscape across the 1970s and 80s with his ground-breaking work. Compiling over four decades of archival footage this documentary chronicles the erratic and chaotic life of this compelling character. Filled with stunningly intimate insights into the mind of a genius, director James Bogle collects previously unseen, private footage to present a glorious, big-screen tribute to one of our country’s most important and influential artists.
Screenings Sunday 23 April, 1pm at Events Cinemas Robina; Wednesday 26 April, 10am at The Arts Centre Gold Coast

One thought on “Incredible lineup of Australian films set for the 2017 Gold Coast Film Festival

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