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2019 St.Kilda Film Festival

The St Kilda Film Festival has revealed an action-packed ten-day event program for its 36th edition.

Proudly produced by the City of Port Phillip, the Festival is Australia’s largest and longest running publicly owned short film festival, this year running from Friday 21 June to Sunday 30 June, marking the winter solstice with a celebration of the most exciting new short filmmaking in Australia.

A highlight of Melbourne’s screen industry calendar, the annual opening night extravaganza will take place at the fabulous Palais Theatre on Friday 21 June. More than 2,800 guests including a host of actors and filmmakers will take to the red carpet to preview a selection of short films that represent the range of programs screening at this year’s festival, including six world premieres.

The 2019 Festival will provide a comprehensive insight into the nation’s short film industry, screening the Top Australian Shorts Competition, two international programs, a range of special screenings and events plus Australia’s largest open filmmaker development program.

City of Port Phillip Mayor, Dick Gross has praised the selection of shorts and the diversity of the festival’s special screenings. “We are proud of the festival’s reputation as an incubator of Australian filmmaking talent,” Cr Gross said. “This year’s competition films represent the diverse talent we are so lucky to have in our local film industry.”

The 2019 festival will also be Paul Harris’ 21st and final year as Festival Director. “This year’s program really looks towards the future of filmmaking. I’ve seen drastic changes in the techniques used by filmmakers over the years but no change in passion,” Harris said of his final St Kilda Film Festival program.

Some of Harris’ picks from the 2019 Top Shorts program include:

  • The Hitchhiker (horror/comedy) – A prosecco-fuelled road trip takes a turn when the group decide to pick up a hitchhiker from all female filmmaking team. Written and directed by Adele Vuko (Skit Box, Wham Bam Thank You Ma’am) and starring Brooke Satchwell (Mr Inbetween, Dead Lucky, Wonderland), Claudia Pickering (Frisky, Winning Formula), Isaro Kayitesi (Pulse,Hyde and Seek) and Christiaan Van Vuuren (Soul Mates, Bondi Hipsters, Top of the Lake: China Girl). Australian premiere.
  • HOME (drama) – starring international icon of Australian cinema Jack Thompson (The Man From Snowy River, Star Wars EpII/III, The Great Gatsby, Australia), HOME is a dark exploration into what it means to be human. Also stars Nathaniel Dean (The Nightingale, Alien: Covenant, Bikie Wars). Australian premiere.
  • Ghostbear (animation) – A polar bear cub, the Ghostbear, wanders through the arctic wasteland in search of his place in the world and his birthplace in the stars. Directed by Paul McDermott (Good News Week, Doug Anthony All Stars, Think Tank).

    The Under the Radar youth short film competition, a selection of international shorts presented by US-based Slamdance Festival and a screening and Q&A with Australia’s favourite 1980s drama Prisoner, are among the special programs screening this year.

    Introducing a new element to the family-friendly session this year, Reel Fun will incorporate a kid’s filmmaking activity plusa screening of three short films, including Fill and Moo from the Japanese City of Obu’s Short Film Festival – sister city of the City of Port Phillip.

The Big Picture, the Festival’s annual filmmaker development program, will this year expand to include over 40 free forums, workshops and stalls with leading industry figures across two days.

Award-winning films from the St Kilda Film Festival are eligible for consideration in the OSCARS® Short Film and Documentary Short Awards.

The 2019 St Kilda Film Festival runs 21 June to 30 June.
Tickets are now on sale. For full program information and to purchase tickets, visit

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