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:: Spotlight :: 2012 Gold Coast Film Festival

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

For the first time in its ten-year history, the Gold Coast Film Festival, presented by Australia Fair Shopping Centre, will be hosting a day of FREE secondary schools seminars for future filmmakers and those curious about the industry and all its possibilities on April 23 at the Robina Community Centre. The day will feature discussions with national and international industry experts.

To begin the day, students will have the opportunity to meet writer Alan Dean Foster. Foster has written well in excess of 100 novels and is revered for his ability to adapt other mediums to the page, from films to video games, and to create amazing science fiction and fantasy worlds. He is best known for his science fiction novels set in the Humanx Commonwealth, an interstellar ethical/political union of species including humankind and the insectoid Thranx, and his fantasy series, Spellsinger, in which a young musician is summoned into a world populated by talking creatures where his music allows him to do magic.

Foster has also produced the novel versions of many films, including such well-known productions as Star Wars, the first three Alien films, Alien Nation, The Chronicles of Riddick, Star Trek, Terminator:Salvation, and both Transformers films. Other works include scripts for talking records, radio, computer games, and the story for the first Star Trek movie. His novel Shadowkeep was the first ever book adaptation of an original computer game.

The day will also feature a panel hosted by GCFF Festival Director Casey Marshall Siemer which will focus on career pathways into film making and will feature well known producers Cathy and Mark Overett (Iron Sky, Unfinished Sky, Separation City) and Todd Fellman (A Few Best Men, Bait 3D, Mental) as guests. The panel will focus on a simple yet powerful question: how do I become a film producer? The discussion will break down the value of tertiary study and practical experience, along with all the possible pathways to achieving goals in the industry.

Representatives from Bond University will also speak about BUFTA, the Bond University Film and Television Awards and how students can win a full scholarship to Bond University.

From 1.00pm local animation house Visual Monkies Studio will hold a manga and anime drawing workshop for students from years 8-12. Discover the styles and techniques of this unique art form originating from Japanese comic books. Learn to create and draw characters from the ground up with professional artists.

Festival director Casey Marshall Siemer is excited for the opportunities the day will present for upcoming local film makers, “With 75% of Queensland screen industry revolving around the Gold Coast, it is crucial that we develop and inspire our creative youth. We’re thrilled to offer the seminars to all schools, and know that they’ll see the value in allowing their students to interact with such prominent members of the industry, all for free.”

Schedule: GCFF Future Filmmakers! Secondary Schools Workshops
10.00am – 11.00am: Science fiction and Fantasy writing workshop (Years 10-12)
11.00am - 12.00pm: Career Pathways Panel: How do I become a film producer? (Years 10-12)
12.00pm – 12.30pm: BUFTA: create your own short film and win a full scholarship to Bond University!
12.30pm – 1.00pm: Lunch break.
1.00pm - 3.00pm: Manga and Anime drawing workshop (Years 8-12)

The Gold Coast Film Festival presented by Australia Fair Shopping Centre, will be held April 19-29 at Birch Carroll and Coyle Cinemas at Australia Fair Shopping Centre in Southport. Gold Coast City Council’s Film Gold Coast is the major Government sponsor of the event. The full program of films and events will be available to view online in due course.

SEMINARS INFORMATION: The seminars will be held at the Robina Community Centre on April 23.
Registration is encouraged. To reserve seating or for inquiries please email


**Update as at March 19**

Acclaimed New Zealand actor and creature performer, Shane Rangi, will be a special guest at the screening of Spartacus: Gods of the Arena this year’s Gold Coast Film Festival!

Shane is well known to movie lovers, having appeared in the most popular movies of the last decade including the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Chronicles of Narnia. He also has vast experience as a motion picture capture performer and stuntman, working on productions such as Tintin, Avatar, King Kong and X-Men: The Last Stand.

Shane’s performance in the gritty and brilliant Spartacus: Gods of the Arena will allow Australian fans to see the thrilling conclusion to this series. He will then hold a special Q and A with fans in that movie session.


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