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67th Sydney Film Festival: Virtual Edition & Awards 2020

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Virtual and national for the first time in its history
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Images - SFF 2020

A first of many in this current climate, Festival attendees around Australia will be able to buy tickets and packages to experience the Sydney Film Festival wherever they are. Going online for the first time in 2020, the Festival takes a treasured feature of Sydney's cultural calendar to new audiences across Australia in a program rich with female filmmakers and Australian stories. Running from 10 to 21 June 2020 this year's event is all about bringing audiences across the nation together to celebrate filmmakers, especially the Australian film industry if only from our homes. Everything and nothing has changed. Let the entertainment journey continue!

Presenting important elements in this year's lineup, enjoy premieres of compelling true stories from some of Australia's most exciting documentary filmmakers; a program of shorts from rising stars of the Australian film industry and films from Europe's most cutting-edge female directors. All films will screen with bonus material exclusively filmed for SFF which includes filmmaker intros and the screening, followed by Q&A sessions. LIMITED TICKETS are available so get some NOW.

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A Hundred Years of Happiness

Ticket pricing depends on whether you're a one-flick wonder or a film connoisseur. An individual feature or documentary is $14; and the Documentary Australia Foundation Award for Australian Documentary package of 10 is $99. Dendy Awards for Australian Short Films and Screenability packages of 13 short films is $14. Screenability package of 3 short films - $5. Europe! Voices of Women in Film package of 10 films - $99. Access Full Festival is $199 and includes access to ALL films in the Virtual Edition Program. There are a limited number of screenings available for each film so book early so as not to be disappointed. Support the film industry, SEE THE FULL LIST & GET YOUR TICKETS HERE. Here's a HOW TO GUIDE with FAQs if required.

There are also FREEBIE EVENTS at this year's Festival with two new collaborations. Firstly SBS On Demand presenting SFF Selects launches on 10 June 2020 where you can relive or discover for the first time, 40 world-class cinematic gems from Festival's past for FREE. Secondly, as the Festival is part of We Are One: A Global Film Festival, you get to enjoy a free global online film festival on YouTube opening 29 May to 7 June 2020 for audiences everywhere. SFF's contributions were 2 ground-breaking Australian films from First Nations directors - Mabo (Rachel Perkins), and Mystery Road (Ivan Sen). Funds raised from the SFF films will assist the GO Foundation (Founded by Adam Goodes and Michael O'Loughlin) to provide educational pathways for Australian Indigenous students through school (and beyond) following the COVID-19 crisis.

To keep the Festival alive and ensure it returns in 2021, help SFF keep bringing the best and most important films and filmmakers from around the world, PLEASE DONATE. If your support and generosity extends to setting up a recurring donation, please DOWNLOAD THIS FORM. Another way you can help support the Festival's mission is to have the Festival experience delivered to your door! Having teamed up with Bottle Rocket, you can now head to the SFF Snack Cart and order in. 10% of all Snack Cart sales will goes back to the Festival. The entertainment industry needs you!

Take a nostalgic trip through SFF's archives to remind you of the entertainment the industry has given you through SFF Reverse Shot. Relive favourite filmmaker talks, hot-topic panels and thought-provoking Q&As recorded at the Festival over the years. Kicking off with the great filmmaker Bong Joon-ho in episode one from last year's Festival, director Bong discusses the ins and outs of what makes Parasite (cut short in cinemas due to coronavirus) so thrilling and why it's struck a chord with Korean and international audiences. It won 4 Oscars for Best Motion Picture of the Year; Best Achievement in Directing; Best Original Screenplay and Best International Feature Film and was nominated for Best Achievement in Production Design and Best Achievement in Film Editing. It was also a winner at the Golden Globes USA, BAFTA Awards, Screen Actors Guild Awards, AACTA International Awards, AFI Awards USA and a whole lot more other WINS & NOMINATIONS.

Bringing together limited screenings of 33 films from 12 countries including 16 World Premieres, there are 7 feature films, 13 documentaries and 13 short films. Of the 10 new Australian docos (including 8 World Premieres), powerful First Nations stories include The Skin of Others, a compelling portrait of Aboriginal WWI soldier Douglas Grant's life, starring the late Balang Tom E Lewis in his final role; and Our Law, an exclusive snapshot of Western Australia's first Indigenous-run police station. Docos on pertinent social issues include The Leadership which chronicles the experiences of a group of international female scientists as they set sail for Antarctica; The Weather Diaries, a poignant exploration from director Kathy Drayton on what the future holds for her pop-artist daughter Imogen aka Lupa J, amidst the threats of climate change and mass extinction.

Women take centre stage in Morgana, an empowering story of how a 50-year-old housewife's plan to end it all unexpectedly transforms into a radical journey of sexual exploration; and Women of Steel, a rousing documentary that follows a group of determined local women and their 14-year fight for the right to work in Wollongong's steel industry. Multicultural Australians get a look in with Rosemary's Way, the inspirational story of a group of migrant women in Western Sydney and their remarkable champion, Rosemary Kariuki; and The Plastic House, directed by and featuring Allison Chhorn, an experimental take on memory and healing from a young Cambodian-Australian  woman's perspective.

From beyond our borders we have Descent, about one of the world's daring professional ice free divers; and A Hundred Years of Happiness, a moving observational look into the life of a young woman in rural Vietnam as she prepares to migrate to South Korea for an arranged marriage.

Europe! Voices of Women in Film has a program of 10 new films from vital European women filmmakers. My Little Sister is a Swiss feature and an intricate family drama; and the German film Kids Run is a gritty love story about a former boxer fighting to keep custody of his children and win over his ex-girlfriend. A Perfectly Normal Family explores the complex relationship between a young girl and her transgender parent; Zana - a tense family drama about a woman's struggles to overcome wartime trauma and conceive a child. Other selected features explore questions of gender stereotypes, a mother's abduction of her two estranged children and a gripping sci-fi about the crew of an Irish fishing trawler who fall prey to a deadly sea creature.

Captivating docos from the Europe series includes A Year Full of Drama about a social experiment; They Call Me Babu, exploring the forgotten legacy of Indonesian nannies working for European families in the former Dutch East Indies; and Lessons of Love - a candid portrait of a 69-year-old Polish woman going her own way after leaving an abusive marriage. Screenability is another exciting platform for screen practitioners with disabilities. The three cutting-edge short film works showcased are Groundhog Night, starring Australian heavyweight actors; Diving In, co-directed by former Youth Paralympian Adam Bowes and Ninya Oyama (The Angus Project); and Safety Net, about a cheeky 12 year old in emergency care.

The Dendy Awards for Australian Short Films from trailblazing women filmmakers include Mukbang - about a high-schooler's sexual awakening following her discovery of the South Korean Phenomenon mukbang; I Want To Make A Film About Women - a queer love letter to Russian revolutionary women artists of the 1920s; and Her Own Music - about a model student who tries to keep her relationship with another girl secret. Obscura, GNT and The Quiet are innovative animations that journey into creatures living behind the lens, a woman's unwholesome mission to conquer social media and thoughtful exploration of an astronaut's transformative journey through space.

For all other films and events check the website. Though we all can't be at the cinema at this moment in time, you can still support and enjoy the Festival from the comfort of your home for now. Will you dress for the event?

June 2020: Sizzle Reel

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Why? 67th Sydney Film Festival: Virtual Edition & Awards 2020
When: 10-21 June 2020
Where: Online
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