6 August 2018

The Adelaide Film Festival (ADL FF) today revealed the stunning line up of Adelaide Film Fest FUND projects and additional highlights set to premiere at the festival in October, with sessions now on sale. Together with the recently announced Opening Night Hotel Mumbai Australian Premiere, the first weekend of the 2018 Adelaide Film Festival boasts three of the most hotly anticipated Australian films of the year alongside documentaries, shorts, VR, and the world premiere of the spy thriller TV series Pine Gap.

Cementing its reputation for innovative screen funding, the ADL Film Fest FUND presents the Australian premiere of Jennifer Kent’s The Nightingale, direct from its world premiere in competition at Venice, the gala work-in-progress of Grant Sputore’s I Am Mother starring Hilary Swank and Clara Rugaard and the feature documentary, She Who Must Be Obeyed, about the remarkable Freda Glynn. Also to world premiere is Adelaide Film Festival FUND commissioned VR The Waiting Room from Molly Reynolds and Rolf de Heer, and the extension to 2017’s VR commission The Summation of Force, the short documentary The Art of the Game from Trent Park and Narelle Autio.

Anthony Maras’ Hotel Mumbai, starring Armie Hammer, Dev Patel, Nazanin Boniadi, Tilda Cobham-Hervey and Anupam Kher will open the festival on October 10, direct from the Toronto International Film Festival World Premiere. The ADL Film Fest Fund, now in its ninth successful round, was the first of its kind in Australia and remains one of the few in the world.

The two other new ADL Film Fest FUND feature fiction works to premiere are:

THE NIGHTINGALE – Australian Premiere

The new feature from writer/director Jennifer Kent, The Nightingale marks a cinematic return to Adelaide for the director of the international hit The Babadook, which was made at Adelaide Studios. The Nightingale is the only Australian film in the prestigious Venice Film Festival competition in 2018, and only the fifth Australian film selected this decade, following in the footsteps of previous Adelaide Film Fest FUND titles Tracks in 2014 and Special Jury Prize winner Sweet Country in 2017.

The Nightingale stars Aisling Franciosi (Game of Thrones) and Sam Claflin (The Hunger Games) alongside Australia’s Baykali Ganambarr (from the internationally acclaimed Djuki Mala dance group), Damon Herriman (Justified, Breaking Bad), Harry Greenwood (Hacksaw Ridge) and Ewen Leslie (Sweet Country). The Nightingale is produced by Kristina Ceyton (Cargo, The Babadook), South Australian-born Bruna Papandrea (Wild, Big Little Lies), Steve Hutensky (2:22) and Jennifer Kent (The Babadook).

Saturday 13 October 6pm – followed by premiere party

I Am Mother  – Gala work-in-progress screening

Starring two-time Oscar® winner Hilary Swank and newcomer Clara Rugaard, I Am Mother is a thought-provoking sci-fi thriller that brings a dark and electrifying edge to a unique mother-daughter story. Based on an original concept by West Australian director Grant Sputore, here making his directorial debut, and writer Michael Lloyd Green, the script was one of the most sought after on the 2016 Black List.  I Am Mother tells the story of a lonely teenage girl, the first of a new generation of humans to be raised by Mother – a kindly robot designed to repopulate the earth after the extinction of mankind. Their unique bond is threatened when a blood-drenched woman (Swank) inexplicably arrives at the bunker, begging for help. Overnight the stranger calls into question everything Daughter has been told about the outside world and her Mother’s intentions. Produced by Kelvin Munro and Timothy White, co-produced by Anna Vincent and Michael Lloyd Green.

Friday 12 October 6.45pm – followed by premiere party

The ADL Film Fest Fund will world premiere the feature documentary, SHE Who Must Be Obeyed.  Directed by her daughter Erica Glynn, it tells the epic life story of Freda Glynn – 78-year-old Aboriginal woman, stills photographer, co-founder of the Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association (CAAMA) and Imparja TV, mother of Erica and Warwick Thornton, grandmother, great grandmother, radical, pacifist and grumpy old woman. The film also details what drove Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people to stake a claim to Australia’s media landscape.

Saturday 13 October – 2pm, followed by premiere party

The ADL FF, together with Samstag Museum of Art, is proud to present the world premiere of The Waiting Room, a newly commissioned Adelaide Film Fest FUND work by internationally celebrated filmmakers Molly Reynolds (Another Country) and Rolf de Heer (Charlie’s Country, Ten Canoes). A modern fable, The Waiting Room redefines the boundaries of VR by dispensing with conventional VR headsets. It is a cinematic installation in five dimensions, traversing the audio-visual realm through space and time. It speaks to the time in between the before and the after: the time before we, the real aliens on planet Earth, arrived; and the time after, once we are done colonising and have gone. What are the realities that we must transcend to avoid arriving at the inevitable?

The Waiting Room World Premiere season: Fri 14 Sept – Fri 30 Nov at Samstag Museum of Art

In a special big screen exclusive, ADL FF will screen the first two episodes of the six-part spy thriller Pine Gap, giving audiences the chance to preview and share in the experience of the new series, starring Parker Sawyers (Southside With You), Jacqueline McKenzie (Romper Stomper), Steve Toussaint (Fortitude), Tess Haubrich (Alien: Covenant, Wolf Creek Season 2) and produced and filmed in South Australia. Set in the intensely secretive world of intelligence and the enigmatic US/Australia joint defence facility in central Australia, this timely series delves into the famously strong alliance between the two countries. Pine Gap is a Screentime production (a Banijay Company) for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation & Netflix, with additional finance from the SAFC, in association with Screen Territory.

Thursday 11 October 6.45pm – followed by premiere party

ADL FF’s popular ART ON SCREEN session world premieres a collection of three short works:

The Woman and the CarArtist Kate Blackmore looks at motherhood and mobility, film and feminism through the prism of Margaret Dodd’s classic short film This Woman is not a Car (1982). Produced by Bridget Ikin.

The Goatman -During the 1980s, claims of satanic ritual abuse ran rife throughout the western world, uncovered by hypnotic therapists and perpetuated by the media. Pia Borg explores the origins and fallout of this mass hysteria. Produced by Anna Vincent, Pia Borg and Bonnie McBride.

The Art of the GameThis hybrid documentary follows two of Australia’s most innovative photographers – Trent Parke and Narelle Autio – as they bring together the worlds of art and sport (cricket) in their first ever moving-image work Summation of Force (ADL FF 2017), posing the question: can sport really be considered art?

Sunday 14 October – 2pm

The first two shorts are announced for the Made in SA shorts programme – Victoria Cocks’ Davi & Luke Wissell’s A Stone’s Throw.

Monday 15 October 6.45pm – followed by premiere party

In conjunction with the Samstag Museum of Art, the ADL FF presents Starstruck: Australian Movie Portraits, a landmark photographic exhibition exploring striking portraiture from 100 years of Australian cinema. Developed by the National Portrait Gallery and the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia, Starstruck features never-before-seen portraits including David Gulpilil in The Last Wave, Toni Collette in Muriel’s Wedding, as well as the actual infamous ‘thong dress’ designed by Tim Chappel and worn by Hugo Weaving’s character Mitzi in the 1994 cult classic The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. See behind the scenes through the lens of renowned Australian photographers, among them Rennie Ellis, Max Dupain and SA’s Robert McFarlane (recipient of the 2017 Bettison James Award), Matt Nettheim and Lisa Tomasetti.

Friday 14 September – Friday 30 November

Tickets are now on sale at

The full festival programme, juries and special guests will be announced in September.


Amanda Duthie – CEO and Artistic Director of the ADL Film Fest and ADL Film Fest Fund:

‘You Must See is the tagline for the 2018 Adelaide Film Festival. The highlights released today are just a glimpse of the multitude of YOU MUST NOT MISS delights coming to you in the full program. It has been a pleasure working with all these filmmakers and it is exciting to present them to audiences for the first time.’

Minister David Pisoni – South Australian Minister for Industry and Skills:

‘South Australia’s film industry is important to our local economy, fostering new career opportunities, and attracting business, and the Marshall Liberal Government is committed to supporting this industry to continue to grow. The Adelaide Film Festival highlights announced today showcase the exemplary work of our local screen professionals and will ensure the Festival will again produce an entertainment event of international standing.’


ADL FILM FEST – 10 – 21 OCTOBER 2018

‘The Adelaide Film Festival is both nest and provocation, as probably the most daring source of government money in the Australia screen landscape.’ Screenhub 2018

The ADL Film Fest has secured a reputation around the globe as an essential screen culture event and was named in Variety Film magazine’s 50 Unmissable Film Festivals list. With a distinctively curated program of Australian and international screen culture, special events, awards and forums, the festival continues to be regarded as a premier destination for new and exciting screen projects.

Each edition of the ADL Film Fest has three prestigious juried awards: Best International Feature Film, Flinders University International Feature Documentary Award, the AFTRS International Virtual Reality Award and the Audience Awards.

The ADL Film Fest takes place immediately after the Venice and Toronto Film Festivals, signifying the beginning of the awards season. Australian screen industry icons Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton are patrons of the festival.


The ADL Film Fest Fund, now in its ninth successful round, was the first of its kind in Australia and remains one of the few in the world. The 86 projects to date have won major awards at all of the world’s leading film festivals (Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Toronto, Sundance) as well as an Emmy, and four features have been Australia’s submission to the Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film. The cutting edge initiative is open to multiple formats including feature fiction, feature documentary, shorts, TV series as well as augmented and virtual reality.


ADL Film Fest Fund features include Warwick Thornton’s Sweet Country and Samson & Delilah, Rolf de Heer’s Charlie’s Country and Ten Canoes, Sophie Hyde’s 52 Tuesdays and Rosemary Myer’s Girl Asleep, Snowtown, Tracks, Mrs Carey’s Concert and Look Both Ways. VR works include Lynette Wallworth’s Emmy Award winning Collisions and Trent Parke, Narelle Autio and Matthew Bate’s The Summation of Force.



INTERVIEWS: Available with Amanda Duthie, additional interviews may be available on request, please forward requests to ABCG Film

Alicia Brescianini ph: 0400 225 603 / e: [email protected]

Cathy Gallagher ph: 0416 227 282 / e: [email protected]

Social media: #ADLFF