A Welcome from Sydney Film Festival Chair Deanne Weir
Announcements May 26 2020 by Deanne Weir
Welcome to SFF 2020. We are proud to present Sydney Film Festival: Virtual Edition and Awards, delivered entirely online to a national audience for the first time in its 67 years. Albeit not shared together in the dark under the State Theatre chandelier; the Festival will continue to be a lens on the world and times, a trusted guide, a forum for ideas, conversations, community, and change.

Central to the Festival’s purpose is our support for Australian filmmakers. Not only feature filmmakers but those emerging through the short film format and the wonderful truth tellers – our documentary makers. Thanks to SFF’s long standing Award partners, Documentary Australia Foundation, Dendy Cinemas and Yoram Gross, Australian short and documentary filmmakers will be recognised for their outstanding work. All filmmakers will also receive a significant proportion of ticket sales, providing critical income at a time when few sources exist.

We are delighted that this year’s virtual edition also includes the European Women in Film and Screenability programs, cornerstone SFF initiatives that promote diverse and inclusive perspectives at a time when polarisation only makes diversity more vital.

Expanding our virtual reach with another first, SFF has partnered with SBS On Demand to present Sydney Film Festival Selects. Curated by Festival Director Nashen Moodley, this superb collection features 40 films from the Festival’s archives. And as many of you know, SFF joins 20 film festivals from around the world to present We Are One: A Global Film Festival. SFF is proud to stand alongside our festival colleagues to celebrate our international community of storytellers and audiences.

SFF is a not-for-profit organisation, so we are extremely grateful for the continuing commitment of our government, corporate and philanthropic partners who have supported Sydney Film Festival into vibrant times and continue with us in uncertain times. Thanks to NSW government partner Screen NSW, the Commonwealth government through Screen Australia, and the City of Sydney Council. Many thanks also to the whole SFF team, led by CEO Leigh Small and Nashen, who continue to deliver excellence in curation and operation under trying conditions.

This passion is matched only by that of you – our audience, filmmakers, and volunteers. Thanks to you, Sydney Film Festival stands strong in 2020, ready to return us all to cinemas in 2021. In changing and challenging times, the Festival itself – coming together to see, share, discuss – will be more vital than ever. I wish you all a great festival and thank you for your support.

Deanne Weir
Sydney Film Festival Chair

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