One of the year's most keenly awaited local films, Dead Europe, will be a late addition to the program of the Melbourne International Film Festival. The third of Christos Tsiolkas' provocative novels to make it to the screen following The Slap and Head On, it's the story of a Greek-Australian photographer (played by Ewen Leslie, pictured) who returns to his ancestral homeland after his father's death. Amid street riots, poverty and racism, he encounters the unrest of contemporary Europe. It is the first feature of Tony Krawitz (Jewboy, The Tall Man) and will screen on August 19, the last day of the festival.
Better known as a multicultural melting pot, Sunshine has added a short film festival to its list of attractions. To be held from September 12 to 14, it will celebrate the people, history and future of the area. Filmmakers of all backgrounds and experience are invited to contribute a short film. Films must be of less than five minutes' duration, made specifically for the event and address the theme of Living in a Land Down Under: Life in a Many Cultured Society. Forty films will be selected, and there is $5000 of prizes to be given away.
For more information: sunshinefilmfestival.com.au.
The ABC's controversial comedy about Prime Minister Julia Gillard and ''first bloke'' Tim Mathieson has scored two nominations in 2012 Australian Writers' Guild awards. Two episodes (Date Night and The Leaker) of At Home With Julia have been nominated in the comedy category (situation or narrative) for writers Rick Kowalski, Phil Lloyd and Amanda Bishop. The AWGIE's original feature film category is dominated by first-timers; Wish You Were Here (Kieran Darcy-Smith and Felicity Price), Last Dance (Terence Hammond and David Pulbrook) and Not Suitable for Children (Michael Lucas) have been nominated. In the adapted feature category are The Eye of the Storm (Judy Morris) and The Sapphires (Keith Thompson and Tony Briggs), while short films Rarer Monsters (Shayne Armstrong and S.P. Krause) and The Wilding (Grant Scicluna) have also been nominated. The awards will be announced on August 24.