About ADL Film Fest


Established 2003

Adelaide Film Festival (ADL Film Fest) is an eleven-day celebration and exploration of Australian and international screen culture with a unique program of screenings, forums and special events. The event has rapidly established itself as one of the boldest and most innovative in the country and has made a name for itself internationally as a platform for exciting new talent in the Australian industry. Originally presented biennially in March, since 2013 the Adelaide Film Festival has been presented in October.

The youngest but most dynamic national screen event, Adelaide Film Festival was established in 2003 and was placed in Variety’s list of “50 Unmissable Film Festivals”. It is Australia’s premier film event, launching new films, art and interactive projects to national and international audiences.

The cornerstone of the Festival is the Adelaide Film Festival Fund, funded through the South Australian Government. Since its inception in 2003, the Fund has helped to redefine the role of film festivals in Australia. As the first fund of its type in this country and a rarity worldwide, it has rapidly come to be recognised as a major force encouraging and showcasing new work in the Australian film industry.

Across 7 festivals, the Fund has commissioned 86 projects. Fund-supported films have gone on to garner national and international acclaim, screening at major festivals and winning 100 international and 186 national prestigious awards (as at February 2018). Amongst this swag of laurels are an Emmy, two awards at Cannes, one at Berlin and two Sundance Film Festivals wins. Learn more about the Fund here.

Adelaide Film Festival grows each year, with an audience exceeding 60,000 people in 2017. In the same year, ADL Film Fest achieved an economic impact to the state of $11.1M. Of the 153 films that screened, 24 were world premieres and 40 were Australian premieres. The Australian-oriented program included an amazing 32 projects were from South Australia.

It is a model festival in many respects.

Al Clark, 2013 AFF Jury President, Producer – The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert, author, AACTA Lifetime Achievement Award recipient

Adelaide is the jewel of Australian film festivals. It has a laid back laconic nature that invites the Individual in. Adelaide is about quality, not quantity or fulfilling a quota. It has a charm and nature that is uniquely South Australian. It is about stories, sharing stories and friendship.
Wayne Blair, Director – The Sapphires

David and I are proud and excited to be part of the always fabulous, always interesting and always challenging Adelaide Film Festival. No wonder it’s ranked amongst the top 50 festivals in the world.
Margaret Pomeranz

Adelaide Film Festival Awards

Adelaide Film Festival offers two cash awards recognising the very best in filmmaking, totaling AUD$30,000.

THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA FEATURE FICTION AWARD celebrates the achievements of filmmakers from around the world. The Adelaide Film Festival was the first Australian film festival to offer a juried prize for best feature. For this award, ADL Film Fest looks for distinctive voice, bold storytelling, creative risk-taking and overall fabulous films.

Past recipients include:

  • The Seen and Unseen, directed by Kamila Andini (2018)
  • I Am Not A Witch, directed by Rungano Nyoni (France, United Kingdom, 2017)
  • Neon Bull, directed by Gabriel Mascaro (Brazil, 2015)
  • Jîn, directed by Reha Erdem (Turkey, 2013)
  • Incendies, directed by Denis Villeneuve (Canada/ France, 2009)
  • Treeless Mountain, directed by So-yong Kim (USA/ South Korea, 2008)
  • Still Life, directed by Jia Zhangke (China, 2006)

Adelaide Film Festival celebrates the very best in documentary with the FLINDERS UNIVERSITY FEATURE DOCUMENTARY AWARD.

Past recipients include:

  • Island of the Hungry Ghosts, directed by Gabrielle Brady (2018)
  • Taste of Cement, directed by Ziad Kalthoum (Germany, Syria Qatar, Lebanon, United Arab Emirates, 2017)
  • Speed Sisters, directed by Amber Fares (USA/Palestine, 2015)
  • Blush of Fruit, directed by Jakeb Anvhu (Australia/Vietnam, 2013)

Past juries have included the distinguished writer Lawrence Weschler, Pierre Rissient, Nobel prize winning author J.M. Coetzee, Noah Cowan and Naomi Kawase.

Adelaide Film Festival Fund

The ADL Film Fest Fund provides equity investment in Australian screen production and we acknowledge the creative teams and our co-investors across this amazing array of films. Across 7 festivals, the Fund has commissioned 86 projects including 43 features, 30 short films and 13 cross platform and art and moving image projects, as at February 2018. This investment of $7 million has stimulated a production spend in South Australia of $44 million and these projects have had a total production budgets of over $120 million across the Australian film industry.

The Adelaide Film Festival Fund is focused on the support of feature fiction films and feature documentary projects along with short films, animation, digital and interactive projects and art and the moving image works.