Jan Chapman to receive Don Dunstan Award

[Press Release by MB Publicty]

The Board of the 2009 BigPond Adelaide Film Festival is proud to announce one of Australia’s most respected and admired producers, Jan Chapman, as the recipient of the 2009 Don Dunstan Award. The Don Dunstan Award is presented biennially in recognition of outstanding contribution to the Australian film industry.

Jan says “I’m very touched to be selected by the Board of the Adelaide Festival to receive the Don Dunstan Award this year since it is in honour of someone who had such a deep commitment to the arts, especially film. I feel proud to be amongst a list that includes the previous recipients and that this award recognises the continued importance for Australian cultural life of an active and distinct film industry.”

Cheryl Bart, Chairman of the BigPond Adelaide Film Festival says “Passionate, supportive and intelligent producers are a major resource in a film industry such as Australia’s whose financial basis is constantly in question. Jan Chapman’s energy and vision are legend in the Australian film industry as is her generosity and support of younger film makers.”

Jan has produced some of Australia’s most critically successful and popular films – including AFI Best Film winner, Lantana and Academy Award nominated, The Piano – and supported and nurtured the careers of some of its most talented filmmakers.

She studied at Sydney University before becoming involved in the Sydney Filmmakers Co-Op. This led to her becoming a producer at the ABC, most famously on the series Sweet and Sour (1984) and on Jane Campion’s first television feature Two Friends (1986). Since founding her own production company, her credits include: The Last Days of Chez Nous (1992), The Piano (1993), Love Serenade (1996), Naked (1996), Holy Smoke (1999), Lantana (2001) and Jane Campion’s new film Bright Star, due for release in 2009. She has also executive produced Somersault (2004) and Suburban Mayhem (2006).

Jan is the recipient of the AFI’s Raymond Longford Award, Brisbane’s Chauvel Award, and in 2004, the Order of Australia.

The Don Dunstan Award is presented by the BAFF Board in recognition of outstanding contribution to the Australian film industry. Jan joins previous winners David Gulpilil (2003), Dennis O’Rourke (2005) and Rolf de Heer (2007).

Jan Chapman will also be in conversation with writer Andrew Bovell following a free screening of  LANTANA at 11am, Saturday 21 February at the Mercury Cinema as part of the 2009 BigPond Adelaide Film Festival forums program.