CinefestOZ will reach global audiences again in 2021 as it hosts its 8th year of the increasingly popular two-day Industry Program, set to go ahead online and in person on Thursday August 26 and Friday August 27.

It follows high demand and support from the Australian Film Industry, and the South West Development Commission, on the back of a wildly successful 2020 program that saw American Actor Kate Walsh join Local and National film representatives to discuss her career, as well as new film opportunities in WA.

This year’s program is set to address the contemporary challenges faced by the Global Film Industry in the midst of COVID-19, and is expected to come back strong with American Film Producer Alan Poul headlining the program as Industry Guest Speaker.

Presented by American Film Showcase, Poul has had a distinguished career as a director and producer of both features and television with a swag of accolades to add to his name including an Emmy Award, a Golden Globe Award, two Producers Guild Awards, four GLAAD Awards, and three Peabody Awards.

Some of Poul’s best-known television producing and directing credits include Netflix’s The Eddy, and Tales of the City, BBC’s MotherFatherSon, as well as HBO’s Westworld, The Newsroom and Six Feet Under.

Poul has also directed episodes of HBO’s Rome, and Big Love, as well as Netflix’s Grace and Frankie, and the pilots for the TNT series Perception. The celebrated producer is now in the midst of executive producing the upcoming HBO Max series Tokyo Vice at Endeavour Content where his company Boku Films is based.

Local, National, and International guests with a variety of experience will join Poul to host 10 inspiring sessions over the two days.

CinefestOZ chief executive officer Malinda Nixon said she was thrilled to once again bring the Industry Program to the Film Festival and looked forward to welcoming local and national film representatives in person and online.

“With States across Australia facing such uncertainty due to COVID-19, it made sense to reintroduce an online component to our Industry sessions to ensure safety and compliance with travel restrictions,” she said.

“It’s very exciting to welcome Alan Poul as our Industry Guest Speaker, as well as the other film practitioners from as far as Los Angeles as we go full speed ahead with CinefestOZ in 2021.”

Engaging and inspiring sessions going ahead as part of the Industry Program include:

Day 1

  • The New World of Film Distribution: Join panel guests Village Roadshow, Madman, and Umbrella as they discuss the constantly changing film landscape, and how film distribution businesses are utilising new strategies to adapt to the many different options on how to release content.
  • The Shift from Traditional Producing: Join guests Francesca Strano (100% Wolf), Nick Batzias (producer, Nitram) via Zoom as they discuss how producers are dealing with changes in how film and television is produced, funded and consumed.
  • No Stories About Us, Without Us! Join Screenwest Diversity and Inclusion Manager Dr. Jonathan Messer as he talks about the importance of people with lived disability in the film industry.
  • The Role of Film in Tourism: Join special guest and film tourism consultant Ian Brodie with a panel of industry experts, including Producer Jamie Hilton, to discuss film tourism worldwide, and how to symbiotically work in production.

Day 2

  • The New World of Film Distribution: Join panel guests Village Roadshow, Madman, and Umbrella as they discuss the constantly changing film landscape, and how film distribution businesses are utilising new strategies to adapt to the many different options on how to release content.
  • The Evolution of Physical Production: Via Zoom, join Head of Physical Production at Amazon Glenn Gainor to discuss the evolution of physical production.
  • Creative Licensing in Music Documentaries: Join host Noah Shilkin and producer Cody Greenwood as Cody unveil’s music licensing mysteries of producing and crafting music documentary Under the Volcano (2021)
  • Feature Film Panel: ‘How To Please A Woman’ with WIFT WA: Women in Film and Television WA invites you to hear directly from the incredible women behind How To Please A Woman.
  • Our Voices on Screen #2: CinefestOZ leading voices Jodie Bell and Jub Clerc will join Screenwest’s Indigenous Manager Devina McPherson and Karla Hart to discuss the importance of indigenous creatives taking the helm to ‘tell our stories, our way’. 
  • Directors Spotlight: Nadia Tass: Join one of Australia’s most respected and unique filmmakers, Nadia Tass, as she discusses her distinguished film career via live Zoom.
  • WA Screen Advisory Discussion: Members of the Western Australian Screen Industry are invited to this discussion that will see Screenwest provide Industry updates. 

South West Development Commission chief executive officer Mellissa Teede said the State Government was committed to growing the film sector alongside other Industries in the region to promote the South West as being a place for fans to visit.

“From Drift to Jasper Jones and The Naked Wanderer and GO!, the South West has proven to be a quality filming destination for filmmakers,” she said.

“The SWDC recognises the value that the creative technology sector contributes to the South West region which is why we’re happy to once again support the longevity of the industry through CinefestOZ’s Industry Program.

The 2021 Industry Program will be held at the Esplanade Hotel Busselton with each day rounded out by Sundowner Drinks, exclusive to Industry Pass holders in the VIP lounge.

CinefestOZ Film Festival will run from August 25 to 29 in the South West, championing Australian stories and film, with its Industry Program slightly curated for these unprecedented times. The Full Festival Program is now live with tickets available via the CinefestOZ app and on the website.

CinefestOZ would like to acknowledge the traditional owners of this land we live and work on and pay our respect to the Elders past, present and future.

CinefestOZ thanks Presenting Partner Tourism WA, Premium Partners Screenwest and City of Busselton and Community Partner Rio Tinto. The festival acknowledges its strong support from Lotterywest and Screen Australia.