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Welcome

ONE OF THE GREAT THINGS ABOUT CURATING A PROGRAM LIKE AMERICAN ESSENTIALS IS EXPERIENCING THE REMARKABLE RANGE OF INDEPENDENT WORKS PRODUCED OVER THE LAST YEAR. I HOPE THIS YEAR’S PROGRAM GIVES YOU A TASTE OF THIS BREADTH AND PROVIDES AS MUCH ENJOYMENT AS IT HAS FOR ME TO PROGRAM.

Straddling styles as diverse as thriller, melodrama, adventure, comedy, coming of age, body horror, political documentary, symphonic documentary, classics, music, cult, art, and biography there just has to be something for everybody!

What I love about them all is fantastic vitality and the obvious talent from some of the filmmakers in the early stages of their feature film careers. I also love the deep and obvious respect even some of these newer filmmakers have for the traditions of storytelling in American cinema.

These traditions simply sparkle in our Masters & Masterpieces section that includes stunning brand new restorations of American classics as well as brand new documentaries that provide the fine-grain behind some of these genuinely iconic cinema works.

Virtually all the new works are Australian premieres drawn from the 2016 Toronto and Venice festivals and the 2017 Sundance, Berlin, Rotterdam and SXSW events. Most come to Australia only a matter of weeks after their World Premieres and it gives us enormous pleasure to bring them to you.

I sincerely hope you enjoy this year’s event – there’s a lot of me in it.

RICHARD SOWADA
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

Opening Night Gala
Centrepiece

Opening Night Sessions & Tickets