Press Release

The 2013 Ian McPherson Memorial Lecture will take place at 11am on Public Holiday Monday 10 June at Event Cinemas George Street (EV3).

Sydney Film Festival is proud to announce the 2013 Ian McPherson Memorial Lecture will feature Australian actor Jack Thompson in discussion with ABC TV host David Stratton on movies and moviemaking. The Ian McPherson Memorial Lecture is a free public event presented every year, commemorating the contribution of the man who helped establish Sydney Film Festival in 1954 and who served on the Festival Board until 1977.

One of the major figures of Australian cinema, Jack Thompson is best known as a lead actor in several acclaimed Australian and American films, including such classics as Wake in Fright (1971, screened in a restored version at SFF 2009); Sunday Too Far Away (Opening Night of SFF 1975); The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith (1978); The Man from Snowy River (1982); and Breaker Morant (1980), which won him an Australian Film Institute award for Best Actor in a leading role, and the award for Best Supporting Actor at the Cannes film festival.

Spanning an acting career of over 40 years, Thompson’s other notable feature films include: The Sum of Us (SFF 1994), Mao’s Last Dancer (2009) and Baz Luhrmann’s Australia (2008). He also appears in Luhrmann’s latest film The Great Gatsby (2013) and SFF’s 2013 Opening Night film Mystery Road.

Appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 1986 for accomplishments in the film industry, Thompson was also awarded the Raymond Longford Award for outstanding contribution to Australian Cinema in 1994, the Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards 2005 Special Achievement Award, and the Inside Film Awards Living Legend IF Award.

“The Sydney Film Festival was a part of my youth. It was largely through the festival that I became aware of a world of cinema. Cinema has become my life's work. I am delighted to be David Stratton's guest at this year's Ian McPherson Memorial Lecture to commemorate and celebrate the establishment of the Sydney Film Festival,” said Mr Thompson.

“We are absolutely delighted to feature Jack Thompson at the Ian McPherson Memorial Lecture this year. This great Australian actor has delivered a range of exceptional performances in seminal Australian films. We are especially pleased that he returns to the Opening Night slot this year with Mystery Road, after opening the festival with Sunday Too Far Away in 1975. His conversation with the inimitable David Stratton is sure to be both enlightening and entertaining,” said SFF Festival Director Nashen Moodley.

David Stratton is a former director of Sydney Film Festival and is currently film critic for The Australian and host of ABC TV’s At the Movies. A recipient of the Australian Film Institute’s Raymond Longford Award, David has also served as a former President of the International Critics Jury for the Cannes and Venice Film Festivals, authored three books and lectures in Film History at the University of Sydney. Stratton and co-host Margaret Pomeranz recently celebrated 25 years of their onscreen partnership on Australian TV.

Sydney Film Festival celebrates its 60th anniversary this 5-16 June bringing a packed program of screenings and special events to even more venues across Sydney. For tickets and full up-to-date program information please visit


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