April was a busy month and I'm sorry that this burgeoning blog got put on a temporary backburner. I'm back now and come baring news. I've been asked to take over the running of the Sydney Film Festival website from now until the end of the festival. It's a huge honour and a big responsibility, but I'm excited about the challenge and looking forward to the films that are in the program. I will also be hosting a video podcast during the festival along with another team so I strongly encourage you all to log into the site and check it out.
If you're feeling generous with your support I'd also appreciate it if you could join the 55th Sydney Film Festival on Facebook and add it as a friend on Myspace, and help us expand the groups by getting your friends to check out what's going on. The festival kicks off 4 June with Mike Leigh's Happy-Go-Lucky and concludes on 22 June with the Oscar-nominated Best Animated Feature Film Persepolis, which is certainly on of the list films I'm most looking forward too.
Mathieu Ravier has written some more comprehensive previews over at Last Night With Raviera, which are worth checking out. To tell you something of the festival though I should mention that it is one of the 10 oldest film festivals in the world, a fact that certainly surprised me. This year's festival includes some 300 films, with 16 World Premieres, 135 Australian Premieres, and 12 features in the inaugural SFF Official International Competiton for 'new directions in film', with the prestige and cash prize of $60,000 that comes with it. The films in competition are:
- Happy-Go-Lucky | Mike Leigh, United Kingdom
- Three Blind Mice | Matthew Newton, Australia
- Tokyo Sonata | Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Japan
- Hunger | Steve McQueen, United Kingdom
- In Bruges | Martin McDonagh, United Kingdom
- Silent Light | Carlos Reygadas, France / Mexico / Germany
- Lake Tahoe | Fernando Eimbcke, Mexico
- My Winnipeg | Guy Maddin, Canada
- Quiet Chaos | Antonello Grimaldi, Italy
- Rain Of The Children | Vincent Ward, New Zealand
- Stop-Loss | Kimberly Peirce, USA
- The Square | Nash Edgerton, Australia
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