2018 AACTA Pitch winners Darcy Prendergast and Seamus Spilsbury. 

Entries are now open for AACTA’s national pitching competition, with the winner to receive a $5,000 cash prize as well as $15,000 towards the production of a short film.

AACTA has aligned itself with MINI, and said is looking to hear from filmmakers with “unique, creative and fun ideas” for shorts that are inspired by the car company’s ‘Forever Unexpected’ manifesto. MINI will be the Presenting Partner for AACTA Shorts Fest this August, as well as AACTA’s national online short film competition, #SocialShorts.

Up to five finalists will be selected to participate in the live AACTA Pitch event held in Sydney June 3.

The judging panel will include:

  • Actor Damon Herriman (Riot, Secret City, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood)
  • Short film producer Alexandra Blue (Welcome to Iron Knob, Sarah Chong is Going to Kill Herself)
  • Writer and producer Victoria Wharfe McIntyre (Miro, The Telegraph Man)
  • Director Derin Seale (The Eleven O’Clock, Static)

The winner will also receive a complimentary MINI vehicle for the duration of the shoot, post-production support from Spectrum Films to the value of $2,500 and tickets to the 2019 AACTA Awards, as well as feedback mentoring opportunities with the judging panel.

AACTA will also run a TV and web series pitch, similar to last year, in a few months.

Last year’s AACTA Pitch winner was Darcy Prendergast and Seamus Spilsbury’s Monster’s Playground, which follows fun-loving siblings Bro-Bro and Siswa and their magical pal who can conjure up a bathtub rocket ship, attract a flock of winged hedgehogs and land the siblings in sticky situations.

“It’s an exciting time for the Australian film industry with so many up-and-coming Aussie filmmakers bringing new ideas, fresh perspectives and unique stories to the table,” said AFI | AACTA CEO Damian Trewhella.

“Last year’s inaugural AACTA Pitch competition showcased just how creative and determined this new generation of filmmakers are – something which perfectly encapsulates the spirit of MINI’s ‘Forever Unexpected’ manifesto. We are proud to be able to provide meaningful support for these filmmakers as they take the next big steps in their careers.”

Entry is free, and applicants are required to provide a production summary of their short film idea and how it incorporates the ‘Forever Unexpected’ manifesto, along with other supporting material. Entries are not required to include or refer to a MINI vehicle.

AACTA is encouraging concepts from creators and teams from diverse and under-represented backgrounds.

For more detail and to apply go here. Entries close May 7.

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