‘In Vitro’, ‘The Pool’ headline early Sydney Film Festival line-up

Talia Zucker in 'In Vitro'.

Ian Darling’s Bondi Icebergs documentary The Pool and Will Howarth and Tom McKeith’s sci-fi mystery thriller In Vitro will have their world premieres at this year’s Sydney Film Festival, to be held June 5-16.

The films are part of an early line-up announcement of 17 titles for this year’s event, the full program of which will be announced on May 8.

In Shark Island Productions’ The Pool, Darling offers a year-long snapshot of one of the most photographed pools in the world and the people who cherish it.

There is a more regional setting for In Vitro, which stars Ashley Zukerman and Talia Zucker as a couple who experiment with biotechnology and develop new farming methods on a cattle farm in the not-so-distant future. However, a series of unsettling occurrences soon leads them to discover a disturbing presence on the farm that threatens their lives. Zucker wrote the script with Howarth and Tom McKeith, with Fictious producing.

Howarth, McKeith, and Darling will attend the festival to present their films.

‘The Pool’

Other confirmed titles include New Zealand actor Rachel House’s directorial debut The Mountain, Jaione Camborda’s Spanish-Belgian-Portuguese co-production The Rye Horn, Agnieszka Holland’s refugee thriller Green Border, Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias hippopotamus drama Pepe, Dag Johan Haugerud’s drama Sex, Alonso Ruizpalacios’ La Cocina, and Jung Min Oh’s family saga House of the Seasons, Olivier Assayas’ French drama Suspended Time, and Pawo Choyning Dorji’s The Monk and The Gun.

There are also documentaries such as Clair Titley’s The Contestant, Frederick Wiseman’s Menus-Plaisirs – Les Troisgros, Rachel Ramsay and James Erskine’s Copa 71, and Peter Murimi and Daphne Matziaraki’s The Battle For Laikipia.

SFF director Nashen Moodley said the first-look program delved “into the profound and the peculiar, from remarkable true stories to works of fiction and ingenious hybrid films that land somewhere in between”.

“This selection, though diverse in setting and scope, reveals some common themes: resilience
foremost amongst them,” he said.

“These films offer a taste of a festival program rich with discovery and insight, poised to captivate and inspire.”

Find out more information about this year’s Sydney Film Festival here.