Tropfest to change date, location; We’ve All Been There takes out first place

18 February, 2013 by Emily Blatchford

It was a clear and starry sky last night at the 21st Tropfest short film festival, a far cry from last year when teeming rain forced thousands of film-goers to evacuate.

It is partly because of the tendency for it to rain in February that has prompted festival organisers to announce a change of date, with the 22nd Festival due to be held on December 8 this year.


It wasn’t the only change announced on the night, with the news Tropfest will now be held at the Centennial Parklands instead of the Domain.
Festival Director John Polson made the announcement live from the Tropfest stage, much to the surprise of the 90, 000 strong crowd.

"We’ve been extremely privileged,” Polson said. “The Domain is now an important part of our history, having been our home since 1999. However, with our steadily growing audience, Centennial Parklands is really the only Sydney venue that offers us the space we now need. This will be an exciting new chapter for us.

“The change to December also reflects the growth Tropfest is experiencing both locally, and internationally. Our significant increase in international guests – both regular audiences and VIP attendees – has meant we need to think more globally now. Our new date fits better with the international film calendar including events like the Oscars. It’s also a magical time of year in Australia. What better way to kick off our glorious summer than with Tropfest?” he said.

Victorian filmmaker Nicholas Clifford took home the coveted ‘fruit trophy’ for his film We’ve All Been There, starring Laura Wheelright, who took home Best Actress.

Also included in first prize is a 2012 Toyota Corolla Levin ZR, a $10,000 cash prize and a trip to Los Angeles for a week of meetings with film executives, as well as a Nikon D800 and $2000 worth of lenses and accessories.

In second place came the short documentary Better Than Sinatra, whose enigmatic, 86-year-old subject so impressed judges they came up with a collective $3000 to go towards a new prize – Best Personality In a Documentary.

Third place went to animated short Punctured while Nikon DSLR category Matt Hardie’s film Let It Rain took home the Nikon DSLR category.

Best actor went to child actor Nick Hamilton for his role in Time.

The panel of judges was made up of actors Sam Worthington, Richard Roxburgh, Magda Szubanski, Rebecca Gibney and Gyton Grantley as well as Alethea Jones (Tropfest winner 2012), film critic Sandy George and Wayne Blair (director of The Sapphires).

In another major announcement of the evening, the signature item for the 22nd festival was revealed – “change.”

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