Alumni Update


For photos of the 2013 Talent of Tomorrow & Accelerator 10th birthday party click here

For photos of the 2013 MIFF Shorts Awards click here

Accelerator Classic – participants with short films at MIFF 2013

AIDEE WALKER (Friday Tigers)

A graduate of Auckland’s UNITEC School of Performing and Screen Arts, Walker acted in New Zealand TV series Outrageous Fortune. After returning to NZ from years abroad, she wrote and performed her own work and transitioned to writing and directing film. Her first short, The F.E.U.C., screened at NZ’s Show Me Shorts Festival and the Palm Springs International Shortsfest, and her second short was the NZ Film Commission Fresh Shorts-funded Friday Tigers. She had acting roles on NZ TV series Sunny Skies and film How to Meet Girls from a Distance and is developing TV series Animals as well as several short and feature film projects with writer/actress Shoshana McCallum.



An Antipodean mix of Maori, Danish, and Scottish descent, Bisley gained an English Literature honours degree before defecting to film. She has written arts journalism and for radio and stage, completed a 2012 internship at New York’s Killer Films and has two features in development.



Hodson's first two films were the micro-budget improvised features Shifter (2000) and .OFF. (aka .ON.) (2002/2006). His feature script Life On The Island won the David Carson Parker Embassy Trust Prize and is in development with Producer Philippa Campbell and the NZ Film Commission. Hodson attended the Binger Filmlab in 2005/6.


JAMES VAUGHAN (You Like It, I Love It)

Vaughan’s 2013 short film You Like It, I Love It was selected for competition at the Berlin, Clermont-Ferrand and Melbourne film festivals.



Prosser in 2012 completed his Honours in Film & TV studies at the Victorian College of the Arts where his short film Hungry Man was awarded the Panavision Script Award and Best Honours Production at the College’s premiere screenings. His films have screened at festivals internationally and he is writing his first feature, a teenage black comedy / crime thriller, Cherry.



An actor by trade, Harvey recently crossed-over to creating and directing stories for theatre and film. She is developing a circus documentary as well as a visual theatre piece performed on a boat with her clan group, Ait Kadal of Saibai Island in the Torres Strait. Harvey continues to collaborate with her brother John Harvey on film and theatre projects through Brown Cab Productions.


MAT GOVONI (The Misfortune of Others)

A recent graduate of The Australian Film Television and Radio School, Govoni began his career working as a cinematographer and compositor before moving to direction in 2009. His work has screened around the globe and he is currently developing an off-beat queer romantic comedy entitled 'Gay Conversion School Dropout'.


MATTHEW MOORE (The Amber Amulet)

Moore made his debut as writer, director and producer with the short film Julian, which won the Crystal Bear for Best Short Film at the 62nd Berlin International Film Festival and then won many awards competing in more than 20 international film festivals culminating in The AACTA Award for Best Short Fiction Film. MIFF 2013's The Amber Amulet, adapted by Matthew and Genevieve Hegney from the novella by Craig Silvey, world premiered at the 63rd Berlin International Film Festival, where it too won the Crystal Bear for Best Short Film. Moore was selected as the third recipient of the Director's Attachment Scheme (an industry program funded by Screen Australia and managed by the Australian Directors Guild for emerging feature film directors to develop their craft) with an attachment on Robert Connolly's MIFF Premiere Fund-supported PAPER PLANES.



Peniston-Bird has made documentaries on artists such as Nick Cave and Dame Edna Everage, as well as programs for MTV Australia and LONELY PLANET TV.  The second short drama she has directed, Summer Suit had its European premiere at the 2013 Berlin International Film Festival. 



A Geonpul Jagera and Bundjalung, Moreton is a transmedia artist and poet who works in film, theatre, digital media and performance, with an international audience for her poetry. Her most recent poetry work, ‘Poems from a Homeland’, was one of 100 notebooks published as part of dOCUMENTA (13), held in 2012 at Kassel, Germany. Her first two scripted films, Redreeming The Dark and Cherish, were selected for the fringe program of the Cannes Film Festival. A third film, A Walk With Words, based on Moreton’s poetry and experience, won the award for Best International Short Film at 2000’s World of Women’s Cinema. She is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Newcastle’s Umulliko Education Research Centre, interrogating western media-making systems from within an Indigenous world view.


SAM DIXON (Old Mate)

Since completing a Fine Arts Degree in Film and TV at the Queensland University of Technology, Dixon has worked on numerous short films and music videos in various roles that have been shown in many film festivals. He is undertaking his Masters in Screenwriting at the Victorian College of the Arts and developing feature-length film scripts.



Hayward studied Creative Arts at La Trobe University, Writing and Art History at the UK’s University of East Anglia and a BA in Film and TV (Honours) at the Victorian College of the Arts. She has directed theatre, music videos and many short films, which have won her a scholarship and several awards. She is developing her first feature screenplay.


TENIKA SMITH (Thanks for the Ride)

Smith studied filmmaking at the Victorian College of the Arts, where she has written and directed six short films and has had films screened at local and international film festivals. She is developing her first feature film project.



Langford was awarded the 2004 Sydney Theatre Company’s Young Playwrights’ Award and has a Bachelor of Media and Communications from the University of Sydney (Majoring in Film Studies and Art History). He has also studied at the Australian Film TV and Radio School and the Victorian College of the Arts where he is set to complete his Masters in Film and TV (Narrative) in 2013.



Screen Australia Springboard


An actor, writer and director who trained with the Australian Theatre for Young People (ATYP) and the National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA), Weekes made his feature debut when he wrote, directed and starred in the multiple award-nominated Bitter & Twisted, which had its US premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. His 2009 script The Muppet Man, about the life of Jim Henson, is setup at Disney and he has several other projects in development including Ponzi’s Scheme, to be directed by Milos Foreman, and Me and My Monster with Laura Ziskin Productions at Sony Pictures. Weekes is also working on an untitled project with Hopscotch Films, and is developing Pest Control with the Screen Australia Springboard program and producers Jamie Hilton and Michael Pontin.



Johnson, from the Dunghutti people of NSW, started her writer/director career with the 1996 short film Two Bob Mermaid and continued exploring themes of race, identity and perception mainly in documentaries from International EMMY Award-nominated Stolen Generations” to Stranger in my Skin and the “making-of” Phillip Noyce’s Rabbit-Proof Fence. Ten years later, Johnson made her second short, Crocodile Dreaming, and then made River of No Return, a documentary about the complexities of living in a remote Indigenous community in Northern Australia. She has produced documentaries for ABC-TV’s “Message Stick” series and is writing Bluey as part of the Screen Australia Springboard initiative.



Moon launched as a writer/director with her Transport Accident Commission cinema advert "Social Death" aimed at young drivers. Since then she has made short films including Hamish, a docu-drama about autism, which has screened locally and internationally, and Bored Girls, her Screen-Australia funded Raw Nerve film. Through Screen Australia Springboard, Moon is developing the feature film Starfish.



McKeith’s short films have played at many film festivals worldwide including the Berlin, Telluride and Busan film festivals. A graduate of the Australian Film TV and Radio School, McKeith also has a Bachelor of Laws and Arts from The University of Sydney. He and Tom McKeith are co-writing and directing their next project through Screen Australia's Springboard program.  



McKeith’s short films have played at many film festivals worldwide including the Berlin, Telluride and Busan film festivals. In 2011, he received production funding through Screen NSW’s Emerging Film-Makers’ Fund and in 2012 his feature screenplay Boxer was selected for Screen NSW’s Aurora script development workshop and is now part of Screen Australia's Springboard development program. McKeith, who has a Graduate Diploma in Screen Directing from the Australian Film TV and Radio School, has a Bachelor of Laws and Arts with honours from The University of Sydney, majoring in English. 



Accelerator Classic – participants with short films at MIFF 2012

TREVOR ANDERSON (The Man That Got Away): Anderson’s award-winning shorts have screened at major international film festivals, including Sundance, Berlin, and Toronto. THE MAN THAT GOT AWAY (2012) premiered at Berlinale, where it won the DAAD Short Film Prize. His previous shorts include THE HIGH LEVEL BRIDGE (2010), THE ISLAND (2009), and ROCK POCKETS (2007). Anderson studied under master filmmaker Werner Herzog at his Rogue Film School. He is also a stage director, playwright and co-founder of Canadian rock’n’roll band The Wet Secrets.


JAMES ARMSTRONG (The Man Who Could Not Dream): Armstrong has worked professionally in Australia’s screen industry on drama, comedy, animation and documentary. In 2000, James formed Gozer Studio, a boutique creative studio undertaking a range of projects across multiple disciplines.


RAPHAEL ELISHA (Catch Perfect): After winning 2008’s Cannes Lions Young Director Award, Elisha has since directed nationwide advertising campaigns, plus three shorts which have travelled the international circuit, and a 13-part series for ABC-TV. He is writing his first feature script and is signed to Melbourne’s Airbag Productions.


RUDOLF FITZGERALD-LEONARD (Kin): Melbourne-born Fitzgerald-Leonard uses short films, poetry, short stories and music to tell stories of personal experience. At 16, Rudolf was involved in a car accident resulting in a lengthy physical rehabilitation, permanent hearing damage and severe tinnitus which irrevocably influences him and his work. In 2011, at the age of 20, he graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA), winning the Film Victoria Award for Best Film (Undergraduate & Honours) for the Cannes 2012-screened KIN.


 MIRRAH FOULKES (Dumpy Goes to the Big Smoke): As an actor, Foulkes has appeared in feature films including ANIMAL KINDGOM and SLEEPING BEAUTY. She was nominated for a Logie Award for her role in Seven Network’s ALL SAINTS and most recently appeared in Jane Campion's TOP OF THE LAKE and Jessica Hobbs’ DEVIL DUST. Her directorial debut DUMPTY GOES TO THE BIG SMOKE won the Rouben Mamoulian award at Sydney 2012 and Best director award at Flickerfest 2013.


PHOEBE HARTLEY (Switch): Hartley made her directing debut in 2006 with her award-nominated short THE KING. She is the creator and director of online documentary series EXTRAORDINARY and her documentary HOME was a semifinalist in 2013’s Focus Forward global competition. Hartley completed directing internships on Network Ten’s NEIGHBOURS and OFFSPRING.  SWITCH was one of three films selected for Screen Australia’s 2011 Raw Nerve initiative and has gone on to screen in festivals in Sao Paulo, Berlin and Vietnam. She is developing features and making the transition into TV drama directing.


ANNA HELME (Continental Drift):  Filmmaker, video artist and media activist Helme’s shorts include CONTINENTAL DRIFT (MIFF, Frameline, 2012) for which she was awarded the Emerging Filmmaker Award at 2013’s Queer Screen Mardi Gras Film Festival. In 2005, she co-founded EngageMedia, a participatory media organisation focused on social justice and environmental video from the Asia-Pacific. As a live audiovisual artist she has performed in Australia and internationally. She is studying Honours in Film & TV at the VCA, and has co-directed and co-produced documentaries about indigenous cultural connection to water (Cultural Flow, 2012) and fat activism (Aquaporko!, 2013).


SAM KELLY (Lambs): Kelly has made several short films and won several prizes, including winning Best Film for three consecutive years at Wellington's popular 48HOURS filmmaking competition, as well as New Zealand Young Filmmaker of the Year. Kelly has a Masters in Screenwriting from Victoria University and is now developing a feature film version of his short LAMBS (Berlinale, Clermont-Ferrand, Melbourne).


JOE LONIE (Honk If You’re Horny): Lonie came to film through music; directing numerous award–winning videos for his own band Supergroove as well as the likes of The Finn Brothers, Bic Runga, Shihad, Goodshirt and Brooke Fraser. He has directed many TV commercials for Flying Fish, including Grabber for Playstation, and Ducks for Goodman Fielder, which picked up a Gold Lion at Cannes. Honk If You’re Horny is his debut short film as a writer and as a director.


MATTHEW J. SAVILLE (Hitch Hike): Born in South Africa to a New Zealand mother and South African father, Saville is working on the third season of TV show ALMIGHTY JOHNSON and finishing DIVE - his second short.


MICHAEL SPICCIA (Yardbird): Having studied design at the Western Australian School of Art and Design, Spiccia worked for a year in London and then set his sights on music videos as a way to hone his directing skills and eventually leap into long-form filmmaking. He split his time between Bazmark (where he worked alongside Baz Lurhman and Catherine Martin as a designer) and directing video clips for such bands such as Evermore, Jet, The Black Ryder, Grinspoon and Bob Evans. The Cannes 2012-selected YARDBIRD is his debut short.


NATHAN VERNON (The Land Between): Acting professionally from the age of 12, both of Vernon’s VCE films exhibited at NGV’s Top Arts Awards in 2007 which helped him secure a place at the Victorian College of the Arts. He graduated in 2010 with his stand-out film THE LAND BETWEEN. Vernon is developing his first feature film.


YIANNI WARNOCK (Playpals): Warnock is a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts. His short MAN ON EARTH was a part of MIFF Accelerator 2012 and PLAYPALS premieres at MIFF 2013.


2012 ACCELERATOR EXPRESS DIRECTORS Selected by Screen Australia's Springboard Program


Miranda Nation: Nation, director of the short ELI THE INVINCIBLE – a part of MIFF Accelerator 2011, is a Melbourne-based filmmaker and actor who studied directing at the Australian Film TV and Radio School and physical theatre at Jacques Lecoq, Paris. She has performed in film, TV and theatre and has written and directed three short films that have screened at numerous international festivals. Her latest short PERCEPTION (MIFF 2013) was supported through the Screen Australia Springboard initiative. She is developing feature projects.


LYNNE VINCENT McCARTHY: McCarthy is a writer, director, script editor and assessor who has worked in the Australian film industry since graduating an AFTRS Screenwriting MA in 2000. From 2007-10, she was Screen Tasmania Development Executive before being selected to attend Amsterdam’s Binger Writers Lab with the feature film project LONELY GIRL which has since received development support from Jan Chapman's Waking Dreams Productions and Screen Australia. In 2011, Lynne directed her first short STRANGEFACE, which was made through crowd-funding and received Screen Australia post-production funding, and has since completely her second short TEST DRIVE.


NICK VERSO: Starting-out directing music videos and writing and directing low-budget feature MAX: A A CAUTIONARY TALEVerso has directed the short films HOLLOW BONES, HUGO, TRAINING WHEELS, three APOCALYPSE BEAR webisodes and FLIGHT (a Tropfest finalist), as well as Nine Network children’s sitcom SNAKE TALES and multi-platform work for CONSPIRACY 365, NOWHERE BOYS and MISS FISHER’S. After attending 2009’s Berlinale Talent Campus and Binger Film Lab, his feature script BOYS IN THE TREES won the NewDraft award for Best Unproduced Screenplay at New York’s Newfest 2011. Most recently, it was developed through Screen Australia's Springboard program and a short prequel, THE LAST TIME I SAW RICHARD premieres at MIFF 2013.


ANTONY WEBB: Since graduating from Curtin University in 2004, Webb has worked as a writer director, producer, editor and cinematographer. He produced and directed several shorts including the short version of TINGLEWOOD, THE DINNER MEETING and HENRY & AARON’S PERFECTLY ADEQUATE CHRISTMAS SPECIAL. He also directed two episodes of Movie Extra’s Foxtel series HENRY & AARON’S 7 STEPS TO SUPERSTARDOM. He won seven WA Screen Awards  and 2009’s WA Young Filmmaker of the Year award, as well as winning two ACS awards and an AFI nomination. Through the Springboard process, Webb adapted and co-wrote a short, BENEATH, based on his feature script for TINGLEWOOD. He is in development on several short and feature films and finishing his next short THE FAN.


2012 ACCELERATOR EXPRESS DIRECTORS Selected by New Zealand Film Commission’s (NZFC) Escalator initiative


ALAN DICKSON: The founder and owner of Yukfoo Ltd, Dickson has worked New Zealand as a professional animator since 1999 and, before that, in the UK for six years. He has worked on feature films, music videos, more than 100 TV commercials and is the Director of NZ Film Commission’s Premiere Shorts animated short film PREFERABLY BLUE. He is currently in production of an animated feature through NZFC's Escalator.


MAX CURRIE: Currie started his screen career writing and directing 80 episodes of the magazine format QUEER NATION over two years, with his work winning best factual series in the 2003 Qantas Media Awards. In 2003, he wrote his first spec feature which led to him interning for Palme d’Or-winning producer Bill Robinson (Gus Van Sant’s ELEPHANT) and being credited as co-writer on two spec features - one of which was optioned by Halcyon Pictures. In 2006, Currie wrote and directed the award-winning mocumentary-style short film SOME OF MY BEST FRIENDS ARE AMERCIAN and since 2008 has written for NZ prime-time serial drama SHORTLAND STREET.  He feature directing debut in 2013 is on his script EVERYTHING WE LOVEDfinanced by NZ Film Commission’s Escalator.


CURTIS VOWELL: Vowell has worked as a director, assistant director and in production as well as being an actor and casting director. He studied at Toi Whakaari: New Zealand Drama School, has performed in productions at major NZ theatres,  has worked on more than 50 TV commercials and for various Auckland production companies as Assistant Director and Production Assistant. Film highlights include EBONY SOCIETY, LICKED, ICE, JOY and RA AND LILY. He directed self-funded short ROWBOAT and in 2013 makes his feature directing debut with NZFC Escalator-funded film FANTAIL.


Accelerator Classic – participants with short films at MIFF 2011

Alister Lockhart was born in Scotland and educated from the age of nine in Australia. He graduated in 1993 from a Bachelor of Graphic Design at the University of Newcastle. Lockhart has worked as a professional commercial illustrator and concept artist in press, advertising, custom sign art, children’s publishing, comics, traditional animation and TV. In between writing and illustrating for various independent Australian comics, he has also written and directed short films and FMV for games such as Warlords Battlecry and Payload. He co-wrote and directed the CG animated short film NULLARBOR, which has won several of awards locally and internationally, including the 2012 AACTA Award for Best Animated Short Film.  


Andrew Kavanagh is a Melbourne-based writer/director and a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts. Premiering Internationally at Locarno, his 2010 graduating film AT THE FORMAL won numerous awards, including the MIFF 2011 Emerging Australian Filmmaker Award and 2011 Gijon International Film Festival Best Short Film. In 2012, he won the Qantas Spirit Of Youth Award for Film and Video and secured a 12-month mentorship with Director Robert Luketic. His 2013 short MEN OF THE EARTH was selected for Rotterdam and Clermont Ferrand.


Anthony Maras completed a Law Degree from Flinders University and went on to study film production at the University of California. His first short film AZADI, which followed the plight of Afghan asylum seekers in mandatory detention, was nominated for an AFI Award for Best Short Film and invited to screen at more than 30 international festivals. He then wrote and directed the AFI Award-winning SPIKE UP, a noir-drama starring Marcus Graham and Roy Billing. THE PALACE, an Australian-Cyprus co-production, won Best Short Fiction and Best Short Screenplay at 2011’s AACTAs, Best Australian Short at 2012’s Flickerfest, and earned him the Best Rising Talent award at 2011’s IF Awards. THE PALACE was also selected for 2011’s Telluride and 2012’s Santa Barbara Film Festivals.


Daniel Koerner is a Creative Director of Sandpit– a company dedicated to exploring the collisions of technology, narrative participation. In late 2012 they co-directed I, Animal, an interactive experience for the Melbourne Zoo with Art Processors (responsible for MONA’s the ‘O’ device). He has directed two short films, IF I DANCE WILL IT KEEP ME WARM? (2011) And YASUE (2010)


David Easteal obtained a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Melbourne, also studying Arts, majoring in literature. His short film THE FATHER played at various international festivals, including London, Kiev, and Hamburg, Rio Film Festivals.


Jackie van Beek works as an actress, writer and director in theatre and film. She has had a string of plays commissioned and produced, and has devised and toured comedy shows in New Zealand, Australia and the UK. Her first short film grew out of a clown workshop she ran on a town camp in Alice Springs, Australia. Since then, she has made five more shorts and is developing a feature. Her films have played in many festivals including London and Berlin, been acquired for educational purposes in Denmark, France, Australia and the UK and have picked up awards in both New Zealand and Australia. 


Jeremy Bliss was born to British-Australian parents, has lived and studied in Europe and the Middle East and has a background as a theatre and film actor. Shot in French and Hebrew, TOY SOLDIER was his first short film and it went to a number of festivals, including having a European premiere at Bilbao. Bliss was selected for 2012’s Berlinale Talent Campus and is now London-based.


Kevan Funk, director of A FINE YOUNG MAN, was born in Vancouver, B.C. and raised in Banff, Alberta. He has spent the majority of his life completely dedicated to filmmaking, directing numerous short films. His work has been showcased at festivals across the world, picking up a handful of awards along the way. He completed a bachelor’s degree in Film, Video and Integrated Media at Emily Carr University of Art & Design. 


Miranda Nation, director of the short ELI THE INVINCIBLE, is a Melbourne-based filmmaker and actor who studied directing at the Australian Film TV and Radio School and physical theatre at Jacques Lecoq, Paris. She has performed in film, TV and theatre and has written and directed three short films that have screened at numerous international festivals. Her latest short PERCEPTION (MIFF 2013) was supported through the Screen Australia Springboard initiative. She is developing feature projects.


Nathan Lewis, director of ATTACH BOAT TO MOTOR, graduated from Sydney Film School in 2008, then worked on several short film projects and video clips. He won the Insight 51 International Film Festival in 2004 and 2006, was chosen as part of the Destination Film Festival in 2008, and received the audience choice, best cinematography and best sound design prizes for his film LIFE WASN’T MEANT TO BE EASY in the 2009 Sydney 24 hour Film Festival. He is currently writing a feature length screenplay. 


Nick Matthews is an AFI award-winning filmmaker who trained in Europe on productions including HBO series BAND OF BROTHERS and Working Title’s ABOUT A BOY. Since returning to Australia, he has produced, edited, and photographed the feature film 2:37 that premiered at Cannes. He also photographed US feature BROKEN HILL and three AFI (now AACTA) best short films SPIKE UP, THE KISS, for which he won 2010’s best short film screen craft AFI, and 2012’s THE PALACE. In 2011 Nick directed the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC)-funded short COLLISION that premiered at MIFF. In 2013 he directed his first feature film, the thriller ONE EYED GIRL funded by the SAFC’s FilmLab.


Rodd Rathjen completed a Bachelor of Film & TV with Honours at the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA) in 2010.  His 2009 graduating film THIRST won best direction at the VCA and earned him the Grace Marion Wilson Writers scholarship. Rathjen’s Honours short THE STRANGER screened at a number of festivals in Australia and overseas. TAU SERU, Rodd’s 2012 short set in the Indian Himalayas, world premiered at 2013’s Cannes Critics Week.  He is developing his first feature film.


Sam Holst is a graduate of Melbourne’s RMIT where he wrote and directed the short SWING, which screened at various festivals including as finalist for the Young Director Award at the Cannes Lions Festival. His New Zealand Film Commission-funded short MEATHEAD screened in Official Selection at Cannes 2011 and won the Berlinale Generation 2012 Crystal Bear for Best Short Film. He is developing several feature projects. 


Tammy Davis, director of EBONY SOCIETY, got his first acting break in WHAT BECOMES OF THE BROKEN HEARTED. Since then he has had roles in many screen productions including JACKSONS WARF, WHALE RIDER, FRACTURE and OUTRAGEOUS FORTUNE. He has also worked with Jim Moriarty’s Te Rakau Drama Company on intensive drama workshops with at-risk youth, and with Hone Kouka as an Assistant Director on theatre productions. Davis’ writing-directing debut, EBONY SOCIETY screened at 2011’s Sundance and Berlin Film Festivals. Also in 2011 he made his second short, the NZFC-funded SONNNY MY OLDER BROTHER, is working on the development of a feature based on his first short and has made two 90-minute dramas for the Maori TV station.


2011 ACCELERATOR EXPRESS DIRECTORS Selected by Screen Australia's Springboard Program


Anna Broinowski is an award-winning director and writer who has been making films since 1995. Her theatrically-screened feature documentaries include FORBIDDEN LIE$, HELL BENTO!! and HELEN’S WAR. Awards include three AFIs, the Rome Film Festival’s.Cult Prize, a Walkley Award, the Russian Film Critics’ prize, the Al Jazeera Golden Award, the 2008 NSW Premier’s Literary Award and Best Director at Films Des Femmes in France. FORBIDDEN LIE$ is one of the top ten highest earning Australian documentaries of all time and it screened in North America , Middle East and Europe, and won the Writer’s Guild of America (East and West) Best Non-fiction Screenplay Award in 2008. Broinowski is developing a slate of features, including her first drama, PLEASE EXPLAIN, a true-story political satire about Pauline Hanson. In 2012, Broinowski shot the MIFF Premiere Fund-supported AIM HIGH IN CREATION! - her feature (world premiering at MIFF 2013) about the cinematic genius of Kim Jong Il - the development of which was inspired in part by the helpful sessions she attended at Accelerator 2011.


Ben Young began his career as an actor in the mid-1990s, and while he continues to act, his focus is on writing and directing. He completed a BA in Film and TV at Curtin University in 2003 and finished his Masters in Professional Communications in 2006. He has directed TV commercials, award-winning music videos, wrote and directed children’s series TRAPPED and CASTAWAY, directed EPKs for LAST TRAIN TO FREO, MARX AND VENUS, THE CIRCUIT and STONE BROTHERS. He has also directed seven short films, five of which he wrote, and has written several more that have been produced. His 2010 short film SOMETHING FISHY has screened in numerous festivals. His short BUSH BASHER was financed by Screen Australia’s Springboard program and shot in 2011.


Luke Doolan has credits as a director, cinematographer, and editor, across music clips, commercials, shorts, and features. His early days of feature film editing were spent assisting editor Jill Bilcock on MOULIN ROUGE. He shot and edited pre-visualisation on Baz Luhrman's shelved epic ALEXANDER and George Lucas' STAR WARS: EPISODE III. Doolan was a collaborator and editor for Nash Edgerton’s shorts including SPIDER, LUCKY and FUEL, for which he won Best Editing at The St. Kilda Film Festival. He won an AFI/AACTA award for best Editing on ANIMAL KINGDOM. MIRACLE FISH, which Doolan wrote and directed and which was produced by Drew Bailey, was nominated for Best Live Action Short at 2010’s Academy Awards. He was invited by Baz Luhrman to be second unit director on THE GREAT GATSBY, and was an additional editor on THE WOLVERINE.


Paul Oliver’s short FREEZE screened at Palm Springs, St Kilda, Brisbane and BBC Shorts. His 50-minute crime drama LENNIE CAHILL SHOOTS THROUGH was broadcast on SBS and won AFI, AWGIE and ATOM Awards. THE FIBROS AND THE SILVERTAILS, his one-hour ABC-TV documentary, played at the Sydney Film Festival, won an AWGIE and was released on DVD. Oliver is the co-creator and one of the writers and directors of OLD SCHOOL, an eight -hour crime drama series, based on LENNIE CAHILL SHOOTS THROUGH, which is in production for ABC TV with

Matchbox Pictures. He wrote and directed Springboard short MERCURY, a thriller about climate change, which supports a feature of the same name and has written siege movie BLOOD BANK with Film Victoria assistance. Both features are being financed through Film Camp’s Philippa Campey.


Zak Hilditch studied film at Perth’s Curtin University, where he completed his honours degree in 2004. He won2006’s WA Screen Awards Young Filmmaker of the Year. Hilditch’s  debut low budget feature THE ACTRESS secured Australia/NZ distribution on DVD in 2007. In 2010 he developed his feature film THESE FINAL HOURS through Screen Australia’s Springboard initiative and received funding for a short sci-fi drama called TRANSMISSION through the same scheme. He was nominated for Inside Film’s 2011 Rising Talent Award. In 2012 TRANSMISSION was in competition at the Tribeca Film Festival, won four awards including best film and director at 2012’s St Kilda Film Festival and was nominated for best short and screenplay at 2013’s AACTA awards, winning best short screenplay. The MIFF Premiere Fund-supported THESE FINAL HOURS (MIFF 2013) is Hilditch’s first funded feature.


 2011 ACCELERATOR EXPRESS DIRECTORS Selected by South Australian Film Corporation’s (SAFC) FilmLab initiative

 Christopher Houghton trained as a photographer and dancer, running his own fine art studio while choreographing and performing works for theatre before turning to directing in 2001. He is an award-winning graduate of the Australian Film, TV and Radio School (AFTRS). After graduating AFTRS, he spent three years conducting video interviews of war veterans for the world’s largest video memorial, the Australian’s at War Film Archive. He also directed two sell-out seasons of Alan’s Ball’s FIVE WOMEN WEARNING THE SAME DRESS for Sydney’s Darlinghurst Theatre. His short films have screened at major festivals including Palm Springs, Tribeca, London and Chicago. In 2007, he directed SWING, which won the Audience Award for Best Short Film at Adelaide, Best Film at St. Kilda and was nominated for Best Short Film at 2007’s AFIs. He made feature length documentary SONS & MOTHERS with investment from Screen Australia and the SAFC in 2012.  


Dave Wade is a self-taught filmmaker who began his filmmaking journey making no budget shorts with some of these films screening at the likes of Dungog, St Kilda, and Bondi. In 2010 he made CROPPED, his first truly-budgeted short, which screened at many festivals including Sydney and Chicago, and was nominated for two AACTA awards. His next film A TALE OF OBSESSION premiered in competition at Flickerfest and in 2012 he shot the short A TORTURED MIND.


Hugh Sullivan is a writer and director whose work has screened at Palm Springs International Shortfest, Flickerfest and the Melbourne International Film Festival, where he participated in the 2008 Accelerator program. In 2006 he won the Spirit of Youth Award – Moving Pictures, which resulted in a one-year mentorship with director Phillip Noyce. Sullivan completed a Master of Arts in Directing at the Australian Film TV and Radio School, and is has completed feature film THE INFINITE MAN.


Matt Vesely completed a Flinders University Bachelor of Creative Arts in 2007. He has since made several low-budget shorts, including BETTER LATE THAN NEVER, STREET’S PRESS, and the Media Resource Centre (MRC) production A LOAD OF BUCKSHOT. The surreal dramatic short THE THING ABOUT DOLPHINS was produced in 2010 as part of Vesely’s attendance at the SAFC’s FilmLab and premiered at 2011’s Adelaide Film Festival. He has features in development.


Ursula Dabrowsky went to film school in Montreal where she made several experimental shorts before moving to Adelaide. In 2005, Ursula wrote her first psychological horror screenplay, FAMILY DEMONS, and shot the ultra low budget film with a small cast and crew in 2006. In 2009, FAMILY DEMONS had its world premiere at Sydney’s A Night of Horror International Film Festival where she won Best Australian Director. The film has since screend at numerous film festivals and won Best Foreign Film and Best Actress at USA’s Fright Night International Film Festival. It was also nominated for Best Actress at the Eerie Horror Film Festival and was shortlisted for the 2009 DigiSPAA Competition. Dabrowsky is currently in post production on the second installment of her Demon Trilogy, INNER DEMON, a supernatural horror film that obtained financing through the South Australian Film Corporation's FilmLab program. She is writing the thirdpart of the trilogy, DEMON HEART.



Alethea Jones directed Tropfest’s 2013 trailer and, directed sketches for THE ELEGANT GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO KNIFE FIGHTING (ABC). Her 2012 short DAVE’S DEAD screened at MIFF and her short LEMONADE STAND won Tropfest and her documentary TISSUE screened on ABC-TV. Her 2010 short WHEN THE WIND CHANGES premiered in MIFF’s Accelerator program and, amongst other awards, won Best Short Film at 2011’s IF Awards. Jones has several features in development.


Ariel Kleimans 2010 short DEEPER THAN YESTERDAY had its world premiere at Cannes Critics Week where it was awarded the Kodak Discovery Award for a short film and Petit Rail d'Or. In the same year, it won the AFI award for Best Screenplay in a Short Film and 2011’s Sundance Jury Prize in International Short Filmmaking. Now based in London making TVCs and music videos with production company Stink, Kleiman won a Global Filmmaker Award at 2012’s Sundance Film Festival for a feature film script he is developing with Warp Films. He was invited to workshop the film at the Sundance Writers & Directors Lab in 2012.


Ashlee Page’s short THE KISS won 2010’s MIFF Emerging Australian Filmmaker Award, two AFI Awards, Best Short at Sydney and screenings at Pusan, Clermont-Ferrand and Tribeca. Page directed a chapter of MIFF Premiere Fund-supported THE TURNING (MIFF 2013). Her feature debut ARCHIVE has been funded by the South Australian Film Corp.’s FilmLab.


Asuka Sylvie’s PINION travelled to various festivals including the Hamptons, Odense and Uppsala and won best film at the DaKINO Film Festival in Romania.


Christopher Dudman has directed TV commercials and wrote and directed the six-hour police series HARRY starring Sam Neill. His short CHOICE NIGHT screened at London, Valladolid and Tours Ecrans Geneva, where it won Best International Short, and in competition at 2011’s Clermont-Ferrand France. He is developing features with the NZFC.


Eddie Martin directed feature documentary LIONEL (MIFF 2008). He is finishing feature documentary THE PAPPAS BROTHERS alongside producers George Pank and James Gay Rees (Senna, Exit Through The Gift Shop). He is also in development on dramatic feature projects including Bon Scott, a biopic based on the AC/DC front man with the assistance of Film Victoria and Screen Australia.


Edward Housden’s short MUSCLES premiered in Official Selection at  Cannes 2010 and then screened at numerous festivals including South By Southwest, London, Chicago, Stockholm and more. He has been directing music videos, is represented for commercials by the UK’s Independent Films and is developing his first feature.


Hannah Hilliard was the inaugural recipient of Screen Australia’s Acclaim Fund, which is a grant supporting the career development of filmmakers with successful shorts that have won specific awards at high profile festivals. Hillard was eligible based on her wins at Berlin and MIFF 2010. With the grant, she is focused on the two features she is developing, GOLDEN PEOPLE, a comedy in the vein of her short FRANSWA SHARL, and KOMODO the story of her Broome pearling families’ experience of war on the remote Indonesian island of Flores.  Hannah is represented by global transmedia company @radical.media as a TVC director.


Irina Goundortseva has credits on five short films, both live action and animation, which have screened at MIFF, Annecy, Hiroshima, Montreal, Palm Springs, Hawaii and more. Her feature film DOG CLUB (2009’s Australian Writers Guild AWGIE Award winner for best unproduced feature film script) is in development with Rebel Wilson attached to star. She was nominated for her second AWGIE award in 2010 for her short film script STOP 39. Stop 39.


James Cunningham has been developing features and made five more short films since MIFF 2010. One is a zombie-romantic-comedy called ROTTING HILL, which has picked up several awards at various festivals. Another is 2012’s SHELVED, which went to SXSW among many other festivals.  


Kazik Radwanski’s short films screened at the Berlinale Shorts Competition for three consecutive years. His 2012 feature debut TOWER world premiered at the 65th Locarno International Film Festival and then screened at many festivals including Toronto, Viennale, New Directors/ New Films presented by MoMA and MIFF 2013.


Matthew Bate’s debut feature documentary SHUT UP LITTLE MAN! AN AUDIO MISADVENTURE was selected in Competition at 2011’s Sundance Film Festival, as part of the World Cinema Documentary program. The film was chosen as part of the 40th New Directors / New Films Festival at New York's Museum of Modern Art and Lincoln Center, and received a Special Jury mention at 2011’s Adelaide Film Festival. His short film THE MYSTERY OF FLYING KICKS won 2010’s MIFF Best Short Doc and Best Short Doc at New Zealand's Documentary Edge Festival 2011.


Olivia Peniston-Bird made her first feature documentary CALISTHENICS: A LOVE STORY.


Sam Peacocke shot a Volkswagen TVC and an online music promo that was a finalist at SxSW and also picked up a Gold Axis award. His 2010 MIFF Accelerator film MANUREWA won a Crystal Bear at the Berlin Film Festival Generation 14plus section for best short. He moved to Europe finding commercial representation with Rokkit in the UK and Irene in France. 



Adrian Francis participated in the 2010 Berlinale Talent Campus to develop his documentary feature TEN VIEWS OF TOKYO. In 2011, he was invited to participate in the inaugural 5x5x5 workshop in Switzerland's Winterthur International Short Film Festival in which five emerging documentary filmmakers from around the world were selected, one from each continent, and then given five weeks to make a 10-15 minute documentary related to the town of Winterthur itself and then the films screen towards the end of the festival.


Ainsley Gardiner is producer of Taika Waititi’s acclaimed short films and features as well as a writer/director in her own right.  She co-produced the feature film BOY, New Zealand’s highest grossing local film ever, which won the Deutsches Kinderhilfswerk Grand Prix at Berlinale 2010. She produced the Oscar-nominated short film TWO CARS, ONE NIGHT and is developing several shorts and features.


Alexandra Schepisi’s second short LOIS (MIFF 2012), starring Jacki Weaver, shot in Australia and Greece. She acted in ABC telemovie DEVIL’S DUST and MTC's theatre production of QUEEN LEAR.


Corrie Chen’s 2010 VCA Masters film WONDER BOY played on the festival circuit including Munich, San Francisco, Flickerfest, and picked up a few awards along the way. In 2011 she was a recipient of Screen Australia's Raw Nerve short film fund, writing and directing the short BRUCE LEE PLAYED BADMINTON TOO. She is in post-production on the short film BLOOMERS, as well as directing a half-hour documentary KEEP ME SAFE TONIGHT for ABC-TV.


Corrie Jones' film WATER won Best Short Film in the 15-30 minutes category at the 2010 Milan International Film Festival. He is currently working on a feature script and is directing commercials with Melbourne production company Guilty.


Dena Curtis’ 2008 short HUSH won the audience award for Best Foreign Short Film at the 2008 Films de Femmes, Créteil France. Her third short film, JACOB (MIFF 2009), won Best Short Drama at 2009’s WOW Film Festival and the Gold Shorts Prize at 2009’s Adelaide Shorts Film Festival, while another short, JACOB, won an award at 2010’s Harlem International Film Festival. With a 2002 graduate diploma in TV editing from the Australian Film TV and Radio School, Curtis returned to the Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association Productions [CAAMA] and worked there for several years and later worked as a producer for ABC-TV’s MESSAGE STICK. Her editing credits include Rosalie’s Journey, Lore of Love (NIDF Series 6), Willaberta Jack and Cheeky Dog, a documentary which she also directed.


Dominic Allen is completing his third short film, HILLS LIKE WHITE ELEPHANTS, shot in East Timor, and has completed a TV series BACK OF HOUSE about Australian artist Jeff Martin. Projects in development include a trans-media work based on Emma Magenta's Gorgeous Sense of Hope, a feature documentary about cult rock band Barbarian and a film about an Italian lifesaver, Il Bagnino.


Eddie White is developing an animated feature length film to be produced by Jessica Brentnall (SLEEPING BEAUTY).


Edwin McGill’s first short BOOTH STORY won Film Of The Festival at London’s Raindance Film Festival and Audience Favorite at Palm Springs. He has since directed two shorts, LONE RIDER and IMPRINT, and is developing his feature debut DRONE.


Gaysorn Thavat was commissioned to write and direct an international campaign for MTV London and is developing her first feature film.


Grant Major did production design on THE GREEN LANTERN and worked on several commercials and a segment of a 3D feature on Cirque du Soleil and worked designing major New Zealand feature film MR PIP.


Mads Matthiesen’s first feature TEDDY BEAR had its world premiere at Sundance 2012 where it won Best Director for a Foreign Film.


Michael Latham works internationally as a cinematographer. His work has screened at film festivals such as Cannes, Sundance and Melbourne.


Nassiem Valamanesh’s DISTANT WORDS was photographed in Iran and combines animation, text and imagery to tell a story of isolation and abandonment that comes when you lose your voice. It screened at MIFF 2012 and has been exhibited at Wollongong City Gallery, Rose Issa Gallery in London and won 3rd place at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s Farhang Film Festival. His film SIDE BY SIDE screened at MIFF 2010, the European Media Art Festival and International Short Film Festival Oberhausen. Recently, he has been collaborating on video art pieces with his parents and in 2012 he was selected as a participant of Adelaide Film Festival’s Hive Labs.



Aaron Wilson’s short AHMAD’S GARDEN was at MIFF 2008. He is signed as a director with Airbag Productions and is working on his debut feature film CANOPY

Anthony Chen’s shorts were recognized at several film festivals including Ah Ma (Special Mention, 60th Cannes Film Festival) and Haze (Nominee, Golden Bear for Short Film, 58th Berlin Film Festival). He was accorded the National Arts Council of Singapore 2009’s Young Artist Award and completed a Film Directing n MA at the UK’s National Film & TV in 2010. His debut feature film ILO ILO premiered in Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes 2013. He now works between London and Singapore.



Callum Cooper completed his Master’s degree at London’s Royal College of Art. His short LITTLE BROTHER screened at Sundance 2011 and VICTORIA, GEORGE, EDWARD and THATCHER at the Toronto International Film Festival 2010.  His most recent fine art commission was “the constant and the flux” for Toronto International Film Festival (2012) and short  film MINE KAFON won a jury prize at the Focus Forward program presented at Sundance 2013. He is developing his debut narrative feature.


Dustin Feneley is a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts Film School and is now NZ-based. His short films as writer and director (NIGHT, SNOW, HAWKER, ESKIMO KISS) won numerous awards and screened at more than 100 film festival, including official selections at Cannes, London, Melbourne and Sydney. His student film SNOW premiered at Cannes 2006 in the Cinéfondation selection and in 2011 he was awarded the Filmmaker Grand Prix at the Sapporo International Short Film Festival for his body of work in short films. He was selected for 2012’s Directors Lab at Amsterdam’s Binger Filmlab, where he further developed his debut feature project STRAY which is in development with NZFC and will be produced by Philippa Campbell (RAIN, TOP OF THE LAKE).


Hugh Sullivan is a writer and director whose work has screened at Palm Springs International Shortfest, Flickerfest and the Melbourne International Film Festival, where he participated in the 2008 Accelerator program. In 2006 he won the Spirit of Youth Award – Moving Pictures, which resulted in a one-year mentorship with director Phillip Noyce. Sullivan completed a Master of Arts in Directing at the Australian Film TV and Radio School, and is has completed feature film THE INFINITE MAN.


Jason Stutter’s short film CAREFUL WITH THAT AXE won the Golden Spike Award for Best Short Film at the 53rd Valladolid International Film Festival 2008. He followed that up with CAREFUL WITH THAT POWER TOOL in 2009 and CAREFUL WITH THAT CROSSBOW in 2010.


Jeremy Cumpston is developing two feature film projects – DYING FOR CAKE, based on Louise Limerick’s award winning novel, and the thriller, THE HIDDEN, set in Hill End, NSW.


John Alsop’s 15-minute short HE, SHE, IT., developed during his 2007 Asialink Manila residency and filmed the following year, has toured festivals extensively in Australia and internationally. He is continuing to develop a feature length comedy set in Melbourne during the late 1970s, of which three of the seven main roles are for characters originally from Manila.


John Evagora won Best Short Film at MIFF 2008 for 296 SMITH STREET, which also received the CRC Award at 2008’s Sydney Film Festival.


Jonathan auf der Heide won the Emerging Australian Filmmaker Award at MIFF 2008 for his short HELL’S GATES that he later made into feature film VAN DIEMEN’S LAND, which screened at MIFF 2009. He has since co-directed and produced the web series COP HARD and directed a chapter of MIFF Premiere Fund-supported THE TURNING (MIFF 2013).


Julius Avery won the Jury Prize at Cannes 2008 for his short JERRYCAN, which was also awarded Honourable Mention at Sundance 2009 and a Special Mention at that year’s Berlinale. In 2013, he shot his debut feature SON OF A GUN.


Katie Wolfe's second short REDEMPTION screened at Sundance 2011. She also directed a telemovie KAWA (based on Witi Ihimaera's book Nights In the Gardens In Spain). It premiered at the Hawaiian International Film Festival. Wolfe has two features in development.


Leo Woodhead’s short ZERO, starring Emily Barclay, premiered at Berlin 2010. He has also been shooting commercials for boutique agency Thick As Thieves and developing a feature film.


Michelle Savill was awarded the 2011 Script to Screen US Screenwriting Scholarship to spend three months interning at Killer Films in New York. Savill’s short film ELLEN IS LEAVING won the Narrative Shorts section at South By Southwest Film Festival 2013.


Steph Green’s short NEW BOY was nominated for an Oscar in 2009 and received a Special Mention at the Berlin Film Festival in 2008. Green’s feature debut RUN & JUMP premiered in 2013.



Adam Arkapaw is a cinematographer who worked on Julius Avery’s short film JERRYCAN, which received the Jury Award at Cannes 2008, David Michôd’s ANIMAL KINGDOM and Justin Kurzel’s SNOWTOWN.


Darlene Johnson made documentary RIVER OF NO RETURN (MIFF 2008), which had its North American premiere as opening night film at Toronto’s imagineNATIVE Film Festival and screened at New York’s Margaret Mead Film Festival. Johnson was shortlisted for the Kit Denton Scriptwriting Fellowship 2008 and is penning her first feature script OBELIA to be produced by Phillip Noyce.


David Michôd’s debut feature ANIMAL KINGDOM won Sundance 2010’s International Competition Grand Jury Prize (Drama) and 10 AFI Awards, earned Oscar and Golden Globe nominations for supporting actress Jacki Weaver and was named Best First Film by New York’s Film Critics Circle. He also co-wrote (with director Spencer Susser) the feature film HESHER, which screened in Sundance 2010's US Competition. His documentary SOLO (co-directed with Jen Peedom) won the award for Best Documentary Under One Hour at 2009’s Australian Film Institute Awards and 2010’s Film Critics Circle of Australia Award for Best Short Documentary. Michôd co-wrote Nash Edgerton's short film BEAR, which played in Cannes 2011’s Official Competition, and produced (with Michael Cody) Mirrah Foulkes's short film DUMPY GOES TO THE BIG SMOKE (MIFF 2012).


Grant Scicluna directed THE WILDING, a Screen Australia Springboard project, which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival, was a Teddy Award finalist and won the City of Melbourne Emerging Filmmaker Award at Melbourne Queer Film Festival for Best Australian Short in 2012. His short film NEON SKIN won the NFSA Orlando Award for Best Australian Queer Short and he also directed GOLDEN GIRL, a Film Victoria-funded adaptation of the Janette Turner Hospital short story. He is writing features for Australian and UK producers.


Kasimir Burgess films have screened broadly and won more than 25 awards, including 2011’s Berlinale Crystal Bear. His short THE MAN WHO COULD NOT DREAM is a dark comedy, which features the narration of Geoffrey Rush. Burgess is making his first feature film FELL.


Kole Onile-ere made a short film called BLAME aimed at educating young people on the dangers of carrying knives.


Leon Ford completed his first feature film GRIFF THE INVISIBLE, which was released in 2011. He was accepted into 2010’s Binger Writer's Lab in Amsterdam to develop his next film, THE MECHANICALS.


Mark Albiston (together with his co-writer director Louis Sutherland) won an Honourable Mention at the 2007 Cannes Shorts Competition for their short RUN while the short SIX DOLLAR FIFTY MAN won the 2009 Sundance Jury Prize in International Short Filmmaking, Best Short Film at Flickerfest, Aspen Shortsfest Best Drama and Special Mentions at Cannes 2009 and 2010’s Berlinale K-plus. Mark’s and Louis’ first feature SHOPPING was in competition at Sundance 2013 and won the Berlinale Generation Grand Prix.


Nash Edgerton’s first feature film THE SQAURE was nominated for seven Australian Film Institute awards in 2008. Over the last couple of years, he has directed music videos, including two for Bob Dylan and one for Brandon Flowers starring Charlize Theron. Edgerton completed a sequel to his multi-award winning short SPIDER (2007) called BEAR (2011) and in 2012 co-directed another short, called THE CAPTAIN.


Paul Andersen directed a short film for Coca Cola called HAPPY ACCIDENT, which premiered at Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films. His first TV commercial, THIS IS WHAT WE AUSTRALI-ARE (made for GetUp!) won the national award at a gala event at the Sydney Opera House. Andersen also directed two comedy shorts in New York and is developing his feature slate.


Sean Byrne is writing the follow-up to his debut feature, the MIFF Premiere Fund co-financed THE LOVED ONES, which world premiered at MIFF 2009, received the Midnight Madness Award at Toronto International Film Festival 2009 and played in local theatres in 2010.