Over 120 film and film-related events across 13 Gold Coast venues.
Special guests include Deborah Mailman, Sue Maslin, James Rolleston, Isabel Lucas, Simon Wincer, Claudia Karvan, Jan Chapman, David Stratton and more
The 15th annual Gold Coast Film Festival will screen 32 feature films from 13 countries, including four World premieres, nine Australian premieres and eight Queensland premieres, plus a host of short films, events, panels, and intimate Q&A’s with filmmakers from 19-30 April.
The city’s flagship film event has confirmed the Queensland Premiere of fast-paced, adventure film Pork Pie for the Opening Night of the 2017 Gold Coast Film Festival on Wednesday 19 April, with director Matt Murphy, producer Tom Hern, executive producer Alan Harris and star James Rolleston attending.
Inspired by the iconic 1981 Kiwi classic, Goodbye Pork Pie, the film captures the story of mismatched trio of accidental outlaws, played by Dean O’Gorman (The Hobbit), Ashleigh Cummings (Puberty Blues) and James Rolleston (Boy), as they speed across New Zealand in a stolen MINI Cooper on a madcap caper filled with unexpected detours and hilarious encounters.
The Festival has also secured the Australian premiere of the much-anticipated sci-fi film, SFV1: The Osiris Child, to screen at the festival and will be joined by director Shane Abbess and actor Isabel Lucas (Transformers, Daybreakers, Home and Away) for an intimate Q&A session following the film’s screening on Friday 21 April.
The Osiris Child follows Kane as he races to find his daughter before the planet they are on is destroyed and plays like an exciting mash-up of Star Wars, Firefly and Fortress.
Gold Coast Film Festival Director Lucy Fisher said the 2017 program is proving to be the biggest program in its 15-year history and the team is pleased to introduce some of the most anticipated films from Australia and around the world.
“This year is expected to be the biggest Gold Coast Film Festival to date, with 120 film and film-related events taking over the entire city, offering something for everyone, from internationally acclaimed dramas, comedies and genre films to locally made indie gems,” she said.
“The 15th annual Festival also marks a number of firsts this year including the introduction of our Movie Locations Tour, which takes guests on a 3-hour journey visiting over 20 films including Kong: Skull Island, The Shallows, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, San Andreas and Muriel’s Wedding.
“The Gold Coast Film Festival has cemented itself as a strong platform for film lovers, aspiring filmmakers and the screen industry to be entertained, inspired and be challenged, inviting thought provoking ideas from the films, workshops and events.
The Gold Coast Film Festival will screen the Queensland premiere of Sundance Film Festival favourite, XX, on Friday 28 April. It is the first horror anthology film to be completely written and directed by female filmmakers, featuring the directional debut of the talented Annie Clark, also known as popular American musician St Vincent.
Fans of Emma Watson and Tom Hanks will also have the chance to see sci-fi thriller, The Circle, based on the prescient novel by iconic author Dave Eggers. The film is a thrilling look at the darker side of technology and explores the way it is changing perceptions of privacy, identity and memory. The film features an all-star cast including Emma Watson, Tom Hanks, Patton Oswalt and the late Bill Paxton.
The Festival will host the Queensland Premiere of British-American war drama, The Zookeeper’s Wife, which tells the incredible true story of a Warsaw zookeeper couple, Jan and Antonia Zabinski, who saved the lives of over 300 Jews during WWII by hiding them inside their zoo. Directed by New Zealand filmmaker Niki Caro (Whale Rider), the film features a career defining turn from Jessica Chastain and is based on the best-selling non-fiction novel by Diane Ackerman.
Directors, writers, cast and crew members will attend a number of film premieres for special Q&A sessions following the films including writer/ director Gerald Rascionato, on Wednesday 26 April, for his upcoming thriller Cage Dive, writer/director Romi Trower for her upcoming drama What If It Works, and Academy Award winning sound designer David White, as part of a Q&A for the World Premiere of Out Of The Shadows.
Australian action thriller Event Zero, set in Sydney and based on a terrorist attack, will screen its World premiere as the festival’s Closing Night film on Sunday 30 April at The Arts Centre Gold Coast. Following the screening, audiences are invited to join a Q&A with the film’s cast and crew to discuss the politically charged thriller and its journey to screen.
CEO of The Arts Centre Gold Coast Criena Gehrke said the city’s cultural precinct and the Gold Coast Film Festival are a perfect match and she is looking forward to the festival line-up.
“Over the coming years the Arts Centre will grow into a precinct that is the beating heart of arts and culture on the coast so it’s wonderful to be able to work with and support the Gold Coast Film Festival, a key fixture on Queensland’s cultural events calendar ” she said.
“The Gold Coast is proving itself as the perfect destination for cultural and sporting events and thanks to the Gold Coast Film Festival, we are thrilled to welcome film fans and screen culture aficionados to the precinct.”
The 2017 Gold Coast Film Festival also brings a host of fun and engaging film-related events across the city, including a brand new activation space at Robina Town Centre. The Centre will transform into a film-lovers haven with the launch of ‘Documentary Season’ at Event Cinemas Robina, featuring four enlightening documentaries that will immerse audiences into the lives of a young weightlifter, an indigenous ballet dancer, a visionary artist and an Australian charity worker.
On Friday 28 April, the centre will also feature ‘Brewed at the Kitchens’ – an evening of coffee demonstrations, espresso martinis, tastings and a unique film screening of Barista, which follows competitors at the World Barista Championship.
Film magic will also touch the southern end of the Gold Coast as it receives an entirely new film event – Surf Classics at Coolangatta. The two-day free event will celebrate the swinging 60’s and surf culture with a night of entertainment, competition and classic cinema with Endless Summer on top of the stunning Kirra Hill on Saturday 29 April, followed by a screening of family-favourite Surfs Up on Sunday 30 April.
Also new to the Gold Coast Film Festival is Hopfest: Pulp Fiction in the Brewery, taking place at Burleigh Brewing Co on Saturday 22 April; Script to Screen with India Dupre on Sunday 23 April, featuring a free live script reading of Stripped which tells the true story of Margaret Dupre, a colorful character and single British mother who became a local 80’s icon; plus Anzac Movie on the Green, a special 30th anniversary screening of classic Australian film, The Lighthorsemen, to be introduced by the film’s director Simon Wincer who will also take part in a special Q&A session after the film on Saturday 29 April.
Award-winning producer Sue Maslin will be the special guest speaker at the third annual Women In Film lunch at QT Gold Coast’s Bazaar on Friday 21 April. Presented by Screen Queensland, the Women In Film lunch recognises the contribution and achievement of women in film and television in Australia.
Maslin’s latest film The Dressmaker, starring Kate Winslet, opened at the number one spot at the Australian and New Zealand box offices and was awarded the highest grossing Australian film for 2015/2016 at the Australian International Movie Convention. Maslin is a strong advocate for women in screen, and is currently Patron of Women in Film and Television Victoria and President of the Natalie Miller Fellowship.
On Saturday 22 April, the Gold Coast Film Festival will present multi-award winning Australian actor Deborah Mailman with the national screen industry award – the Chauvel Award, as part of the Gold Coast Film Festival and welcome the actor and audiences to a special event: David Stratton In Conversation With Deborah Mailman.
The night will be an intimate look at Mailman’s career on and off the screen, accompanied by footage from her films and moderated by film critic and previous Chauvel Award recipient, David Stratton.
Also attending the Gold Coast Film Festival is the esteemed Chauvel Award committee’s Jan Chapman, producer of the AFI Best Film winner, Lantana and Academy Award® winner The Piano and 2002 Chauvel Award recipient, actor, producer and AFI Chair Alan Finney, 2007 Chauvel Award recipient, Australian film critic and TV personality David Stratton, major festival sponsor Screen Queensland’s CEO Tracey Vieira, Professor Emeritus Bruce Molloy, producer Melanie Coombs and actor, producer and 2016 Chauvel Award recipient Claudia Karvan.
The Festival has also attracted Australian film industry heavy-hitters to its REELLife screen industry panels, a series of 14 panels covering a range of screen industry topics. On Saturday 22 April, highly experienced producers Jan Chapman and Sue Maslin will to discuss their experiences with producing and provide tips on balancing time and money in the ‘Producing: Money Vs Time’ panel session; and on Friday 28 April, the festival will host distinguished guests, Academy Award winning sound designer David White and AFI Award winning composer Christopher Gordon, for an ‘All Ears. Sound Design and Composition’ panel, where they will share their tips on crafting solid sound design and exceptional audio experiences.
Other special events at the 2017 Festival include Movie Trivia Night; Zoolander Model Boat Party; SIPFest, an annual short film competition featuring 12 short 10-minute cinematic masterpieces by emerging filmmakers from around Australia; and the screening of some the best from the London Short Film Festival, the premiere UK showcase for cutting-edge UK independent film, at SIPFest.
With two long weekends on either side of the 11-day festival, it’s the perfect opportunity to book a visit to the sunny Gold Coast and the Gold Coast Film Festival.