Big premieres for film feast

Callum HunterSouth Western Times
Alan Lindsay and Jo O'Dea.
Camera IconAlan Lindsay and Jo O'Dea. Credit: Callum Hunter

The secret to CinefestOZ’s success has been revealed by its organisers and headlining director.

The festival opened yesterday in Busselton with the world premiere of Whale Super Highway, a documentary that tracked humpback whales along the WA coast.

The headline title however will be the world premiere of The Naked Wanderer at Grand Cinemas Bunbury, starring Angus McLaren, Natasha Liu Bordizzo and British comedy legend John Cleese.

According to director Alan Lindsay and Bunbury events coordinator Jo O’Dea, the secret to the festival’s success was the community.

“It’s incredibly intimate compared to other festivals,” Mr Lindsay said.

“Everybody meets everybody else and there is great excitement around everything.”

Mrs O’Dea added the festival was a celebration of regional films and it brought the Australian film industry back to the people.

CinefestOZ event ambassadors Travis Jeffery and Alex Williams echoed this stance and said it was the community that drew them back year after year.

“Cinefest celebrates community so well,” Mr Jeffery said.

“It’s so humble and down to earth ... we’re so excited to be back as ambassadors this year.”

This year will mark the 12th anniversary of the five day event which will come to a close on Sunday night with a 6.30pm screening of Non-Fiction (Doubles Vies).

The CinefestOZ Film Prize is also back for another year and has remained Australia’s richest film prize, offering $100,000 in prize money to the winner.

Actress and director Rachel Ward will head this year’s judging jury.

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