BAFF opening and closing night films announced

21 January, 2011 by IF

Press release from Miranda Brown Publicity

Get ready for a party (or two…). The 2011 BigPond Adelaide Film Festival (BAFF) is delighted to announce the films that will open and close the 2011 Festival, two feature films that span the possibilities of original Australian storytelling.


The Vale Ale Gala Opening Night at the Festival Theatre will feature the World Premiere screening of MRS CAREY’S CONCERT, Bob Connolly and Sophie Raymond’s documentary story about music making and coming of age at a Sydney girls’ school.

MRS CAREY’S CONCERT is one of 14 projects that have received support through the Adelaide Film Festival Investment Fund (AFFIF). Bob Connolly and Sophie Raymond will be in attendance along with Karen Carey and some of her extraordinary students.

Guests in attendance will include the 10 NEWS INTERNATIONAL AWARD FOR BEST FEATURE FILM jury – Julietta Sichel, Pierre Rissient, Hossein Valamanesh, Trevor Groth, and Robin Gutch; The HIVE participants including Richard Tognetti, Meryl Tankard, Garry Stewart, Gideon Obarzanek, Kate Champion, Michael Kantor, Rose Myers, Chris Drummond, Matthew Whittet, Lynette Wallworth, Susan Norrie, Tony Krawitz Glendyn Ivin, Anna Broinowski, Ashlee Page, Amy Gebhardt and Jason Sweeney; Adelaide Film Festival Investment Fund supported filmmakers Amiel Courtin-Wilson, Matthew Bate Sophie Hyde, Bryan Mason, Justin Kurzel, Beck Cole, Jeni Lee, Shane McNeil & Troy Bellchambers and Anthony Maras; STOP THE GAP artists and curators Warwick Thornton, Brenda Croft, Alan Michelson, Kathleen Ash-Milby, David Garneau and Megan Tamati-Quennell;, Frederick Boyer, Delegate General from the Cannes Director’s Fortnight; Jane Schoettle, International Programmer of the Toronto International Film Festival; Bill Gosden, Director of the New Zealand International Film Festival; American independent filmmaker John Sayles and Maggie Renzi; and special effects legend Douglas Trumbull. Following the opening night screening guests will celebrate together at the legendary Gala party at the Queen’s Theatre (Dress Code: Frock Up).

Following 10 days of dynamic screenings, special events, workshops and forums, with over 47,000 film lovers and filmmakers in attendance, the 2011 festival will be farewelled with the closing night presentation of Brendan Fletcher’s MAD BASTARDS, a raw look at the journey to becoming a man in contemporary Aboriginal culture, hot on the heels of its Competition Screening at the Sundance Film Festival.

Director Brendan Fletcher, actors Dean Daley-Jones and Greg Tait and producers and performers, The Pigram Brothers Alan and Steven will all be in attendance.

Did we mention there’s another party? Plus the announcement of the winners of the TEN Evening News International Award For Best Feature Film, and F4 AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING NEW DOCUMENTARY TALENT.

The debate about films will be as hot as the hors d’oeuvres and the conversation as sparkling as the wine.

Director Katrina Sedgwick said ’I am so excited about both of these films. They exemplify the diversity and range of Australian stories to be told, whether in fictional or documentary medium. Despite differences in genre, both use music as an integral part of their storytelling, using it to situate their films in a unique Australian place. Most importantly, they are simply incredible films.’

Full Program Revealed 28 January!

MRS CAREY CONCERT (World Premiere)
DIRECTORS: Bob Connolly, Sophie Raymond
Karen Carey has been Director of Music for twenty years at MLC Burwood, an independent Sydney girls school. She oversees the Biennial MLC Opera House Concert that takes 18 months of hard slog from conception to execution. Bob Connolly (Rats in the Ranks), one of the great figures of Australian documentary, makes his return to directing after a ten-year absence. He and co-director Sophie Raymond follow Mrs. Carey and her team as they coax, inspire, cajole and frog march their young performers to reach the required standard. Carey insists on a challenging classical repertoire, demands a dauntingly high level of performance, and requires the active participation of not only her select group of dedicated student musicians, but also the entire 1200 strong student body. Along the way we can glimpse the great divide between those prepared to open their hearts and minds and those yet to discover the potential within.

DIRECTOR: Brendan Fletcher
TJ is a mad bastard, and his estranged 13-year-old son Bullet is on the fast track to becoming one too. After being turned away from his mother’s house, TJ sets off to the Kimberly region of the northwest to make things right with his son. Grandpa Tex has lived a tough life and now, as a local cop, he wants to change things for the men in his community. Crosscutting between three generations, Mad Bastards is a raw look at the journey to becoming a man in contemporary Aboriginal culture. Developed with local Aboriginal communities and evolving out of the personal stories of a local cast, Mad Bastards draws from the rich tradition of storytelling in Indigenous life. Using music from legendary Broome musicians the Pigram Brothers, writer/director Brendan Fletcher fuses the harsh realities of violence, healing, and family.

Ticketing and full session details: