Mathew Kesting. 

Mathew Kesting has been named the new chief executive and creative director of the Adelaide Film Festival (AFF).

He succeeds Amanda Duthie, who left the festival after 2018’s iteration to join the South Australian Film Corporation as head of production, development, attraction and studios.

Kesting has worked as AFF’s program manager since 2015, and in between the festival’s biennial programs has worked as exhibition manager at Adelaide’s Mercury Cinema and curated six editions of the OzAsia film program. He was also the program manager at the Brisbane International Film Festival from 2006 until 2008 and produced the 15/15 Film Festival between 1999-2009.

Minister for Industry and Skills David Pisoni said it was exciting to have someone of Kesting’s ability and passion for the South Australian film sector to lead AFF.

“The government is committed to creating new career opportunities for young South Australians and growing our creative arts sector is just one way of doing this,” he said.

“The Adelaide Film Festival has established a global reputation as a bold and innovative event, which last year showcased exciting new talent in the Australian screen industry, with an amazing variety in the 139 films that featured, 29 of which were South Australian.

“I look forward to Mr Kesting’s contribution to the Adelaide Film Festival and am confident that he will continue to build the reputation of this important South Australian cultural institution.”

Chair of the AFF Sandra Sdraulig said Kesting’s depth of knowledge, love for films, festivals and screen culture will ensure the continued success of AFF.

“The Adelaide Film Festival is a brilliant showcase of the best of our local industry and its growing future potential, and Mr Kesting has been part of that for some time now,” she said.

“For him to continue on as its chief executive and Creative Director will ensure the next festival will be as internationally recognised as the last.”

Kesting said he was excited about the opportunity. “I want to continue to support creative talent in this state and help grow South Australia and Australia’s reputation for filmmaking,” he said.

“It is important for local audiences to see Australian stories on the big screen and supporting the effort to bring more films to them is something I’m very much looking forward to.”

The next Adelaide Film Festival will take place in 2020.

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