The much-loved CinefestOZ Film Festival, held in the picturesque South West region has secured funding to continue for another three years. The Cook Government has pledged its support to sustain this event until at least 2025, ensuring a celebration of cinema that attracts thousands of visitors and injects millions into the local economy.
“The CinefestOZ Film Festival is expected to attract thousands of people to the South West over the next three years, plus inject millions of dollars into the local economy, which is always welcome news for the region’s tourism industry,” said Tourism Minister Rita Saffioti.
The annual festival, backed by Tourism Western Australia’s Regional Events Program, Screenwest, Lotterywest, and Screen Australia, has come a long way since its inception in 2008. It proudly showcases a diverse range of Australian films, offering a platform for filmmakers to share their creativity and artistry with audiences from across the nation and beyond.
This year’s festival is scheduled to take place from Tuesday, August 29th, to Sunday, September 3rd, captivating cinephiles with over 200 free and ticketed screen-related events held in approximately 40 locations across the region. Attendees can immerse themselves in the magic of cinema while exploring local wineries, galleries, cinemas, and cosy small bars.
One of the highlights of CinefestOZ is the prestigious $100,000 Film Prize, awarded to one of the four uniquely Australian films competing for this honour. A panel of five national and international filmmakers will have the difficult task of selecting the winner among the contenders vying for the award.
CinefestOZ also boasts an inspiring schools program called Cinesnaps, designed to nurture a passion for filmmaking among local students. This initiative aims to encourage young talents to explore their creativity and develop an appreciation for the art of cinema.
As a testament to its commitment to inclusivity and diversity, the festival features free ‘Community Days,’ including the popular IndigifestOZ. These dedicated events showcase the brilliance of First Nations filmmaking and talent, inviting everyone in the community to enjoy and celebrate the rich cultural tapestry of Indigenous storytelling through the medium of film.
Acting Regional Development Minister Tony Buti commented, “I’m delighted that funding for the next three years for the CinefestOZ Film Festival will ensure amazing local screen productions continue to flourish, with the event to provide a wonderful five-day experience for regional communities in the South West to enjoy.”
Lead image credit: CinefestOZ