To acknowledge the shifting landscape of Australian cinema, Ozflix, Australia’s movie global streaming service, will present the inaugural Ozflix Independent Film Awards (the “Ozzies”) on Saturday 7 April 2018 at The Alex Theatre in Melbourne’s St Kilda. The Australian Film Future Foundation Limited (AFFF Ltd.), a non-profit organisation whose mandate is to restore and digitise Australia’s lost films, will run the Awards of which Ozflix are the naming sponsor.

A national and on-going annual gala event, the Ozzies will celebrate the achievements of independent Australian films, that have been made for a budget of $5 million or less. AFFF Chairman Alan Finney, renowned for his lifetime support of Australian cinema, co-founded Ozflix in 2015 with the organisation’s CEO Ron Brown. Brown believes that it is important to recognise the achievement of making a successful film with a reasonably low budget. “Extracting a good result within the restraints of a tiny budget, rather than a large one, requires substantially more ingenuity, creativity and sheer commitment,” he says.

The event will recognise multiple sub-categories ranging from Best Film, Best Performance, Best Script, Best Cinematography and Best Production Design, to Best Costume Design, Best Sound, Best Editing, Best Visual Effects and Best Score. Over the past decade, the financial divide between local features has increased significantly, resulting in the emergence of two distinct groups.

This comprises of  films with multi-million budgets that are in stark contrast to the majority of projects, which are produced for often less than $5 million. It is the former category that frequently reaps accolades and recognition at industry Award Ceremonies, to the detriment of features and documentaries produced with leaner resources. Ozflix believes that it is vital that Australia have an Awards event that recognises the important “indie” sector of Australia’s film industry and the sterling efforts of the many fine practitioners, from both sides of the camera, who work within. “We are long overdue in celebrating this consistently tenacious industry sector,” says Brown.

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