Accelerator 2012 Participants

Accelerator Classic
Participants with short films at MIFF 2012

TREVOR ANDERSON (The Man That Got Away): Anderson’s award-winning shorts have screened at festivals including Sundance, Berlin, Toronto and SXSW. His films include DOCKING (2019), THE LITTLE DEPUTY (2015), THE MAN THAT GOT AWAY (2012), and THE HIGH LEVEL BRIDGE (2010).

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 directed nationwide advertising campaigns, plus three shorts which have travelled the international circuit, and a 13-part series for ABC-TV. He is signed to Melbourne’s Airbag Productions and has made the short ALBERT (2015).

RUDOLF FITZGERALD-LEONARD (Kin): Melbourne-born, Berlin-based, Fitzgerald-Leonard graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA) in 2011, winning the Film Victoria Award for Best Film (Undergraduate & Honours) for the Cannes 2012-screened KIN which won him MIFF’s Emerging Australian Filmmaker Award. His work has premiered in competition at numerous international festivals, including MIFF, London Short Film Festival, Slamdance & Filmfest Dresden. In 2016, he co-founded the creative collective and production company Mimesis Collective, and regularly works in the casting and directorial departments of various television and feature film productions (including Cate Shortland’s Berlin Syndrome).

MIRRAH FOULKES (Dumpy Goes to the Big Smoke): As an actor, Foulkes’ credits include TOP OF THE LAKE, ANIMAL KINGDOM, SLEEPING BEAUTY, THE CROWN & THE TURNING and she has written and directed three award winning short films, DUMPY GOES TO THE BIG SMOKE, FLORENCE HAS LEFT THE BUILDING and TRESPASS. Her Mia Wasikowska-starring debut feature JUDY AND PUNCH premiered at 2019’s Sundance Film Festival.

PHOEBE HARTLEY (Switch): Hartley made her directing debut with her 2006 short THE KING, while the 2011 Screen Australia Raw Nerve-funded SWITCH screened in festivals in Sao Paulo, Berlin and Vietnam. She has also directed documentaries, TVCs and music video and she has completed directing internships on Network Ten’s NEIGHBOURS and OFFSPRING. In 2018 she wrote and produced her first radio documentary for ABC Radio National.

ANNA HELME (Continental Drift): Helme’s shorts include CONTINENTAL DRIFT (MIFF 2012, SBS-TV 2014, Emerging Filmmaker Award Mardi Gras Film Festival 2013) and MYMY (Frameline San Francisco 2014, Outfest Los Angeles 2014, BFI Flare London 2015). They have performed and exhibited audio-visual art internationally including installations for NIGHTCRAFT at Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art 2014 and MIX NYC 2015. Helme has co-directed and co-produced documentaries about indigenous cultural connection to water (CULTURAL FLOWS, NITV 2014-16) and body acceptance (AQUAPORKO!, Frameline 2013) and currently has documentary and narrative series in development while lecturing at VCA (Faculty of Fine Arts & Music, University of Melbourne).

SAM KELLY (Lambs): Kelly made several short films and won several prizes, including LAMBS (Berlin, Clermont-Ferrand). He won Best Film for three consecutive years at Wellington’s 48HOURS filmmaking competition, as well as New Zealand Young Filmmaker of the Year. Kelly has a Masters in Screenwriting from Victoria University. His debut feature is 2019’s New Zealand film SAVAGE.

JOE LONIE (Honk If You’re Horny): Lonie came to film through music; directing numerous videos for his own band Supergroove as well as the likes of The Finn Brothers, Bic Runga, Shihad, Goodshirt and Brooke Fraser. He directed many TVCs for Flying Fish, including Grabber for Playstation, and Ducks for Goodman Fielder, which won a Cannes Gold Lion. HONK IF YOU’RE HORNY premiered at MIFF and screened at many other festivals, picking up multiple awards, including Best Short Script, Best Actor and Best Short Film at the NZ Film Awards, and Best Actor, Best Director and Best Film at Show Me Shorts. His next short film SHOUT AT THE GROUND was a semi–autobiographical piece based on his experiences in the formative stages of Supergroove.

MATTHEW J. SAVILLE (Hitch Hike): Born in South Africa to a Kiwi mother and South African father, Saville worked on the third season of TV show ALMIGHTY JOHNSON and his second short was DIVE. He recently finished production on his first feature film JUNIPER, which stars the Charlotte Rampling.

MICHAEL SPICCIA (Yardbird): Having studied design at the Western Australian School of Art and Design, Spiccia worked for a year in London and then went into music videos splitting 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 was his debut short.

NATHAN VERNON (The Land Between): Acting professionally from the age of 12, both of Vernon’s High School 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 film THE LAND BETWEEN.

YIANNI WARNOCK (Playpals): Warnock is a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts. His short PLAYPALS was a part of MIFF Accelerator 2012 and MAN ON EARTH premiered at MIFF 2013. His short HAPPY WITH BEAR premiered at SXSW in 2015 and his short HOMEBODIES world premiered at Clermont-Ferrand before screening at SXSW 2016.


Selected by Screen Australia’s Springboard Program

MIRANDA NATION is a Melbourne-based filmmaker and actor who studied directing at the Australian Film TV & Radio School (AFTRS) and physical theatre at Jacques Lecoq, Paris. Her short films have screened and won awards at numerous festivals, including ELI THE INVINCIBLE (MIFF Accelerator 2011) which premiered at Edinburgh 2011 and won the Flickerfest 2012 SBS Award. Her short PERCEPTION (MIFF 2013) was developed through Screen Australia’s Springboard program and won the Sydney Film Festival 2013 Best Short Film Award and was selected for Clermont-Ferrand 2014. Her MIFF Premiere Fund-supported feature debut UNDERTOW premiered at MIFF 2018 and went onto Edinburgh 2019.

LYNNE VINCENT McCARTHY: McCarthy is a writer, director, script editor, story developer and assessor who has worked in the Australian film industry since graduating with 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 and 2013’s Berlinale Co-Pro Market with the feature film project LONELY GIRL.

NICHOLAS VERSO’s short films include FLIGHT (a Tropfest finalist) and THE LAST TIME I SAW RICHARD, which screened at MIFF 2013 and won the Best Short Film AACTA and Melbourne Queer Film Festival Best Emerging Filmmaker Award. His TV directing work includes the Emmy award-winning series NOWHERE BOYS, GRACE BESIDE ME, THE UNLISTED and TOYS OF TERROR. In 2016, his debut feature BOYS IN THE TREES premiered at the Venice Film Festival, won Best Feature at the Austin Film Festival and is now streaming on Stan, Netflix and Amazon Prime.

ANTONY WEBBSince graduating from Curtin University in 2004, Webb worked as a writer director, producer, editor and cinematographer. He produced and directed several shorts including the short version of TINGLEWOOD, THE DINNER MEETING, HENRY & AARON’S PERFECTLY ADEQUATE CHRISTMAS SPECIAL, THE FAN and CARMENTIS. He directed two episodes of Movie Extra’s Foxtel series HENRY & AARON’S 7 STEPS TO SUPERSTARDOM as well as several ‘through the window’ segments for PLAY SCHOOL. He won nine WA Screen Awards and 2009’s WA Young Filmmaker of the Year award, and two ACS awards. Through the Springboard process, Webb adapted and co-wrote the short BENEATH, based on his feature script for TINGLEWOOD. In 2014, he wrote and produced the award-winning web series ASHBECLEE. In 2015, he shadowed two directors on Warner Bros.TV series THE 100 in Vancouver. He directs commercials through production company Siamese and is managed by Fictional Entity in LA.


Selected by New Zealand Film Commission’s (NZFC) Escalator

ALAN DICKSON: The founder and owner of Australasian animation studio Yukfoo Ltd, Dickson has worked in 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 made an animated feature through NZFC’s Escalator.

MAX CURRIE: Currie’s multi-award winning debut feature EVERYTHING WE LOVED premiered in competition at 2014’s Palm Springs and then competed in other festivals. The film scooped Best Director at VTXIFF 2015, Best Actress and Best Cinematography at 2014’s NZ Film & TV awards and Best Actor at the 2014 St-Tropez Antipodes Film Festival. For five years, Max wrote for prime-time serial drama SHORTLAND STREET, was a writer on both seasons of hit comedy drama STEP DAVE. 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.

CURTIS VOWELL: Vowell is a New Zealand born, Cook Island filmmaker. His debut feature film, FANTAIL, premiered in 2014’s Rotterdam International Film Festival, New Zealand International Film Festival and MIFF, receiving a People’s Choice award. He was nominated best director at the New Zealand Film awards. His second feature film, BABY DONE, was released in 2020. Recent work includes short documentary MANAWA ORA, New Zealand hospital drama SHORTLAND STREET and a series of short films for Auckland Museum’s Taku Tāmaki exhibition.