A brand new film festival blasts off at the Ritz in October
The SciFi Festival will be held at the Ritz Cinema in Randwick this October, showcasing seven science-fiction features and two short films over a five-day period.
The Festival, brainchild of FilmInk magazine publisher Dov Kornits, opens with the Australian premiere of Equals, from arthouse director Drake Doremus (Like Crazy).
Equals is a romance set in a dystopia where genetic manipulation has taken away all human emotion. Kirsten Stewart (Twilight) and Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road) star, with Aussies Guy Pearce and Jacki Weaver in supporting roles.
The Purge: Election Year is a third installment of the franchise that postulates an annual 12-hour period in which all crimes, including murder, are legal. Protagonist Leo (Frank Grillo) must protect a Presidential candidate targeted for murder on Purge night.
Director Steven Shainberg (Secretary) returns after a ten-year career hiatus with Rupture – a thriller in which a mother (Dragon Tattoo’s Noomi Rapace) is kidnapped by a shadowy organisation whose intention is to transform her into a monster.
Contemplative hard-science feature Approaching the Unknown has an astronaut (Mark Strong) on a one-way Mars mission to help kickstart colonisation, while documentary For the Love of Spock, marking the 50th anniversary of Star Trek, focuses on actor Leonard Nimoy. His son Adam Nimoy directs and viewers are encouraged to dress up in Trek gear.
The Similars begins on a rainy night in 1968 with a group of strangers stranded together at a bus station. As the storm outside continues, something dangerous lurks. The movie's late-night screening will be followed with a Skype interview with the filmmaker direct from Mexico.
We’re desperate to see This Giant Papier Mache Boulder Is Actually Really Heavy on the strength of the title alone. This New Zealand indie has won many awards including Best Comedy at the London and Boston Sci-Fi Film Festivals. It concerns three Auckland geeks who are transported into a sci-fi B-movie. Lead actor, co-writer and director Christian Nicolson will be flying in from New Zealand for a post-film Q&A.
In free sideline events at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School in Moore Park, snippets of three upcoming Australian sci-fi feature films will be screened and discussed with the filmmakers.
Another workshop will feature concept illustrator/storyboard artist Tani Kunitake (Star Wars: Episode VIII, The Matrix) who is in development with a sci-fi project called Cerulean. She will be giving a presentation along with the project’s producer, who is also an actress, dancer and motion-capture performer, Dani Swan.
Season passes to the entire festival are available for $111.