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:: Spotlight :: 2015 St.Kilda Film Festival

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

The St Kilda Film Festival, Australia’s longest-standing and publicly owned short film festival, is now an ACADEMY AWARD qualifier for the Documentary Awards and Short Film Awards. The Festival will be held from Thursday 21 to Saturday 30 May 2015 and will feature some of Australia’s best emerging and established filmmakers, producers and directors.

The program will launch with a glamorous red carpet event on Thursday May 21 at the magnificent Palais Theatre, offering an exclusive sample of the program’s best short films for more than 3000 film-lovers and special guests.

Celebrating its 32nd anniversary in 2015, the St Kilda Film Festival’s program will be hosted at the St Kilda Town Hall for the first time. The new venue will offer a unique cinematic experience boasting state of the art sound and screening technology with historical theatre seating. The Festival will screen the Top 100 short film entries with a prize pool that totals over $40,000 worth of cash and in-kind craft awards. Award-winning films from the St Kilda Film Festival will be eligible for consideration in the Oscars' Short Film and Documentary Awards.

The St Kilda Film Festival supports the Australian film industry and showcases exceptional films by emerging artists, providing the most comprehensive overview of the national short film industry.

The St Kilda Film Festival is proudly produced and presented by the City of Port Phillip. For further information please visit www.stkildafilmfestival.com.au

To keep up to date on the St Kilda Film Festival, please visit the official website

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**Palm Springs International ShortFest joins forces with St Kilda Film Festival**

St Kilda Film Festival will run from Thursday May 21 to Saturday May 30, and is proud to announce its partnership with the internationally acclaimed Palm Springs International ShortFest. For the second year running, Palm Springs International ShortFest will bring a selection of its best entries from the last two years to the St Kilda Film Festival through four exclusive showcases. The Palm Springs International ShortFest is renowned worldwide for the extraordinary community of filmmakers it attracts and for the quality and scope of its programming, screening more than 300 films from over 50 countries this year.

Film lovers will be treated to four specially curated programs from the 2013 and 2014 Palm Springs International ShortFest at St Kilda Town Hall as part of the St Kilda Film Festival:
· Saturday May 23 – Animation Showcase 4.00pm

· Sunday May 24 – Jewish Showcase 2.00pm

· Sunday May 24 – Thriller Showcase 7.30pm

· Saturday May 30 – LGBT Showcase 5.30pm

Festival Producer Paul Harris said St Kilda Film Festival is delighted to have Palm Springs International ShortFest returning in 2015 to showcase a wide and diverse range of short films. “The films showcased in the Palm Springs programs bring films from North America, South Africa, Europe, United Kingdom and India, providing film lovers a true taste of talent from around the world,” said Mr Harris.

Darryl MacDonald, Director of the Palm Springs International Film Festival and Palm Springs International ShortFest, said they are excited to put together some of the Festival’s best films just for Melbournians. “We’re thrilled to once again be joining forces with the esteemed St Kilda Film Festival to bring film lovers Down Under a wide-ranging selection of accomplished short films from around the globe. For these talented emerging filmmakers to add their voices and visions to those of the gifted Australian filmmakers featured in the St Kilda Film Festival line up is a fitting platform for new international talent, and a vibrant showcase of kindred creative spirits who celebrate the short film art form with their work,” said Mr MacDonald.

Highlights of the international program include:
· Dragula – Director Frank Meli

Rocky Horror Picture Show's Barry Bostwick stars in Dragula, a coming of age musical about a high school senior who eliminates his self-esteem issues after attending Bostwick's amazing Drag performance.
· Kush – Director Shubhashish Bhutiani

Following the 1984 assassination of Indira Gandhi, a school field trip becomes a harrowing ordeal for a teacher trying to protect a 10-year-old Sikh boy from the growing violence around them.

· La Gouffre – Directors Carl Beauchemin, David Forest and Thomas Chrétien

A pair of young adventurers labour to build a gigantic bridge to cross an enormous gulf blocking the road ahead.

· #twitterkills – Director Brett Sorem

A lonely Zoe (Sunah Bilsted), whose only friends are the 6,669 imaginary ones on twitter and her self-centred sister (Sarah Paulson) use social media to construct a perfect public persona. But creating a fake life has consequences and she's got a lesson to learn…that no good lie goes unpunished.


St Kilda Film Festival is also proud to welcome Dilcia Barrera, Short Film Programmer at Sundance Film Festival as the 2015 international guest. Ms Barrera will bring a wealth of film knowledge, having worked on some of the world’s biggest and best festivals.

As one of Australia’s longest-standing and publicly-owned short film festival, the St Kilda Film Festival showcases exceptional films by emerging artists, providing the most comprehensive overview of the national short film industry.

The St Kilda Film Festival is proudly presented and produced by the City of Port Phillip and runs from Thursday 21 to Saturday 30 May 2015 at St Kilda’s Palais Theatre and Town Hall.

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**Opening Night pictures**

Photos from the opening night are courtesy of Matt Deller. Thanks also to St.Kilda Film Festival and Wrights PR.

Click here

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**Festival winners**

Australia’s longest-standing and publicly owned short film festival, St Kilda Film Festival awarded Best Short Film to Sotiris Dounoukos’ 19-minute drama A Single Body, who took home a $10,000 cash prize courtesy of the City of Port Phillip and qualifies for consideration in the OSCARS® Short Film category.

Also now eligible for consideration in the OSCARS Documentary Shorts category, The Eagle, produced and directed by Gus Berger took home the prize for Best Documentary. Other highlight awards included; Best Director to Erin Good for her work on The Wonderful and Best Actor to Nicholas Denton for his role in Rabbit.

Proudly produced and presented by the City of Port Phillip, award winners of the 32nd St Kilda Film Festival were presented over $50,000 in cash and in-kind prizes at an invitation-only Closing Night Awards Ceremony at St Kilda Town Hall.

City of Port Phillip Mayor, Cr Amanda Stevens said the St Kilda Film Festival is proud to present home-grown talent with awards to recognise their outstanding work in the film industry. We are thrilled that the St Kilda Film Festival continues to provide a platform to showcase the exceptional work of Australia’s film industry professionals and we congratulate the 2015 award winners,”

Festival Director, Paul Harris said the standard of short films being submitted year on year is impressive and each year he looks forward to judging over 600 entries. He said, “In my 16 years as Festival Director, the judging continues to get tougher with the production, direction and acting talent in the short film space developing at phenomenal rates. This year’s Festival offered local audiences a comprehensive 10-day program, featuring Australia’s Top 100 short films, archive screenings including a remastered episode of The Go!! Show, music videos, youth programs and filmmaker development workshops, with over 12,700 attendees supporting this year’s program of events.”

For the months of June and July, St Kilda Film Festival will tour highlights from the Top 100 films across regional Victoria providing viewers around the state with access to diverse screen culture. The tour will stop at nine locations including Nhill, Yarrowehah, Queenscliff and Eaglehawk.

2015 ST.KILDA FILM FESTIVAL AWARD WINNERS:

Best Short Film
A Single Body (VIC)

Craft Award
Grey Bull (VIC)

Best Director
Erin Good – The Wonderful (NSW)

Best Screenplay
Julian Vincent Costanzo – Falling (VIC)

Best Editing
Agnes Baginska – Milkmaid (NSW)

Best Cinematography
Ari Wegner – Baby Baby (NSW)

Best Comedy
Bunny New Girl (NSW)

Best Actor
Nicholas Denton – Rabbit (VIC)

Best Sound Post Production
Paul Pirola – Scission (VIC)

Best Visual Effects
Evan Whiteside – The Witching Hour (NSW)

Best Youth Short Film
Off Track

Best Animation
The Story of Percival Pitts (VIC)

Best Original Score
Tiernan Cross – The Wonderful (VIC)

Best Documentary
The Eagle (VIC)

Best Indigenous Film
Karroyul (WA)

Best Young Actor
Majdi Slaibi – Pocket Money (NSW)

For more information, visit

www.stkildafilmfestival.com.au