From humble beginnings as Sony Tropfest finalists to joining the world’s filmmaking elite, Peter Carstairs and Elissa Down are making movie magic with both directors’ films, September and The Black Balloon, invited to screen at the prestigious 58th Berlin International Film Festival.
The highly-coveted festival, which runs from 7- 17 February 2008, boasts the largest audience of any film festival in the world! And at next year’s festival, September and The Black Balloon will enjoy an audience of over 200,000 film fans from around the world as they compete in the Generation Program (films specifically for a young audience).
Peter Carstairs’ deeply moving film, September, is the first film to emerge from the Tropfest Feature Program. It tells the story of two 16 year-old boys, one black and one white, whose pure and unaffected friendship begins to fall apart under the pressures of a changing social and political climate.
Having enjoyed widespread critical acclaim and festival success with screenings at Melbourne, Toronto, Pusan and Rome International Film Festivals, September will now screen alongside the world’s finest in Berlin.
Following her success as a Sony Tropfest finalist in 2004, Elissa Down’s first feature film, The Black Balloon, will have it’s world premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival. Aussie favourite Toni Collette and supermodel Gemma Ward star in a story about fitting in, discovering love, and accepting your family.
John Polson, Founder and Creative Director of Sony Tropfest, says ‘Congratulations are truly in order for Peter and Elissa who are testament to the fact that not only does Australia produce world–class filmmakers, but shows the success you can achieve when given the right outlet and opportunities to showcase your work.’
‘Sony Tropfest has nurtured the careers of some of Australia’s most esteemed filmmakers and is privileged to continue supporting the local film industry by giving a leg-up to emerging filmmakers,’ says Polson.
Sony Tropfest will be held on Sunday 17th February 2008. For more information about the festival and how to enter, visit http://www.tropfest.com/
September will be released on DVD on March 19th 2008 through Hopscotch Entertainment.
The Black Balloon will be released nationally on March 6, 2008 by Icon Film Distribution.