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The Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) today announced the thirty-four feature films in competition for this year’s AACTA Awards – Australia’s highest screen accolade.
In an industry first, The King, a Netflix Original, has been considered an eligible feature film in competition without screening theatrically in Australia. Featuring Australians across all key creative roles – director David Michôd, screenwriters Michôd and Joel Edgerton, actors Ben Mendelsohn and Edgerton, and producers Edgerton, Michod and Liz Watts – the Australian Academy have included the film given the significant reach of its distribution strategy and recognition at major international film festivals.
This marks the second time that the Australian trio – Edgerton, Mendelsohn and Michôd – will compete fornominations at this year’s AACTA Awards following the critically acclaimed Animal Kingdom (2010).
Also in competition for the 2019 AACTA Awards presented by Foxtel is Anthony Maras’ feature film directorial debut Hotel Mumbai, starring emerging Australian actress Tilda Cobham-Hervey and international actor and AACTA Award winner Dev Patel, as well as Grant Sputore’s Netflix Original film I Am Mother starring AFI | AACTA Award winner Rose Byrne alongside international actress Hillary Swank. AACTA Award nominated director Sophie Hyde’s Australian-Irish co-production Animals is another testament to the globalisation of the Australian film industry, bringing her Australian creative team together with international stars Holliday Granger and Alia Shawkat to craft a unique coming-of-age story with universal appeal.
This year’s slate of feature films in competition represent a wide range of genres and themes, highlighting ourindustry’s achievement in original and compelling storytelling. From the ever increasing numbers of genrefilms, through to powerful dramas and idiosyncratically Australian comedies, the 34 competing films really do offer something for everyone, with a wonderful diversity of themes created by first timers and experienced film makers alike.
The full list of feature films in competition are: Acute Misfortune, Angel Of Mine, Animals, Bilched, Book Week, Buoyancy, Celeste, Chocolate Oyster, The Combination Redemption, Danger Close: The Battle Of Long Tan, Emu Runner, Escape And Evasion, Hearts And Bones, Hotel Mumbai, I Am Mother, Judy & Punch, Juvenile Delinquents, The King, Locusts, The Naked Wanderer, Nekrotronic, The Nightingale, Outback, Palm Beach, Pimped, Promised, Reflections In The Dust, Ride Like A Girl, Sequin In A Blue Room, Slam, Storm Boy, Suburban Wildlife, Top End Wedding and Undertow.
Among those making their feature film directorial debuts are AFI | AACTA Award winning and Oscar® nominated actress Rachel Griffiths’ with Ride Like a Girl, alongside exciting new talent including SamuelVan Grinsven’s Sequin In A Blue Room and Thomas M Wright’s Acute Misfortune. Previous AACTA Award winning writer and director Jennifer Kent features in competition with her acclaimed sophomore film The Nightingale, alongside Palm Beach from the AFI Award winning and Golden Globe nominated Rachel Ward.
The feature films in competition also feature an impressive list of top Australian talent and previous AFI | AACTA Award Winning actors, including: Bryan Brown (Palm Beach), Daniel Henshaw (Acute Misfortune), Damon Herriman (Judy & Punch, The Nightingale), Jacqueline McKenzie (Palm Beach), Sam Neill (Palm Beach, Ride Like a Girl), Richard Roxburgh (Angel of Mine), Mia Wasikowska (Judy & Punch), Hugo Weaving (Hearts and Bones) and Odessa Young (Celeste).
This year’s mix of feature films in competition also include an impressive showcase of talent vying for their firstAACTA Award nomination including: Jai Courtney (Storm Boy), Travis Fimmel (Danger Close: The Battle Of Long Tan), Natasha Liu Bordizzo (The Naked Wanderer), Jessica McNamee (Locusts), Radha Mitchell (Celeste), Yvonne Strahovski (Angel of Mine) and Toby Wallace (Acute Misfortune).
All thirty-four of the feature films in competition will be available for AACTA and AFI members to view online via AACTA TV from 10 September. The full schedule is available at http://www.aacta.org.