Richard Roxburgh.

Actor, writer, producer, and director Richard Roxburgh will chair the jury for this year’s CinefestOZ, which this year incorporates 270 film screenings and events.

Taking place from August 23-28, the 15th iteration of the West Australian festival will be held across 35 locations in the state’s south west, including Augusta, Bunbury, Busselton, and Margaret River.

Roxburgh will oversee the selection of the $100,000 Film Prize winner from the four finalists — Gracie Otto’s Seriously Red, Matt Nable’s Transfusion, Jub Clerc’s Sweet As, and Goran Stolevski’s Of An Age.

He said there was something special about CinefestOZ and its locations.

“The relaxed coastal environment, mixed with a vibrant arts community and of course its famous food and wine makes it a truly unique experience,” he said.

Roxburgh’s appointment as jury chair coincides with the launch of this year’s full line-up, which includes a broad mix of scripted, documentary, and short film titles.

WA films making their world premiere at the event range from John V Soto’s action thriller Avarice to Martin Wilson’s drama thriller Pieces. The first three episodes of NITV documentary series Our Law will also be shown for the first time.

Rustico will host the screening of Gracie Otto’s ‘Seriously Red’

Of the other scripted highlights, Sydney Film Festival opening night film We Are Still Here, featuring the contributions of four writer/director teams, will have its WA premiere as part of the event, as will fellow SFF selection, Rowan Devereux’s Evicted! A Modern Romance.

Among the documentary drawcards this year are Rob Murphy’s Splice Here: A Projected Odyssey, which explores the digital shift from recording and projecting on film and features contributions from Quentin Tarantino and Douglas Trumbull. There is also Jason van Genderen’s family-centric Everybody’s Oma and Sue Thomson’s examination of homelessness in women over 50, Under Cover.

Elsewhere, the short film section will house the sub-categories, Vengabus — tales featuring the LGBTIQA+ community behind and in front of the camera; Rollercoaster — an array of strong stories designed to bring audiences on a trip with highs and lows; and Party Bus. There is also the Delorean Filmmakers of the Future short film set, celebrating young WA filmmakers, as well as the Deadly Indigenous Short Film Set.

Still to be announced is the details of this year’s industry program, while the event will again feature the Cinesnaps showcase and community screenings.

CinefestOZ Chair Margaret Buswell said this year’s festival line-up catered to broad spectrum of audiences.

“The CinefestOZ team together with the film industry and the local community has created an extraordinary program that talks to a diverse audience – from laugh-out-loud comedies and compelling dramas, to thought-provoking documentaries about current social and environmental issues, stories that showcase our First Nations people, and films that tap into popular culture and music,” she said.

Find out more information about this year’s CinefestOZ here.

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