Red Dog Leads Nominations for InsideFilm Awards
The internet -based InsideFilm Awards shortlists a diverse collection of films for their annual awards.
The IF Awards are, arguably, the second most important film awards dished out in Australia after the (newly named) Australian Academy Awards (AAFs). Voted for by internet throughout the year, the IFs are seen by many as truly democratic and selected by the audience that actually see the films in the cinemas. Detractors argue that such voting is open to abuse.
The nominations for 2011 proved to be diverse in the extreme as commercial success Red Dog dominated with nine followed by Oranges and Sunshine with eight and the very limited released Face to Face scoring six nominations.
2011 – the year in film
It has proven to be a year of mixed fortunes for Australian film. Red Dog has confounded all expectations and romped to more than $A20 million at the box-office – only the eighth local production to pass the benchmark. Its success will put it in good stead with the IF Awards, although its populist genre may be against it when the inaugural Australian Academy Awards (awards formerly known as the AFIs) are announced later in the year.
Nine nominations in ten categories could see the Kriv Stenders directed feature sweep the board. And it’s certainly hot favourite for best film, cinematography, music and editing.
One category that will certainly be awarded to a different film is that of best sound. Animation hit The Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole should pick up this gong, but Oranges and Sunshine and Snowtown are hoping to nab it for themselves.
It will be difficult to bet against the ensemble nominations for best actor and best actress. The entire cast of the arthouse hit Face to Face has been nominated for best actor or best actress as a single nomination per category. Vince Colosimo, Sigrid Thornton, Luke Ford, Mathew Newton…. With several actors or actresses making up a single nomination – essentially making it an ensemble nomination – acclaimed performances by Emily Watson (Oranges and Sunshine) and Geoffrey Rush (The Eye of the Storm) may just have to wait until the AAFs for recognition.
With its six nominations, Face to Face could give Red Dog something of a run for its money, particularly if it can add best script to the acting awards. Red Dog has won acclaim for a story well-told more than award recognition for its acting, script or direction. Cinematography and music, along with that well-told storyline, are the film’s strengths.
It’ll be the AAFs that are likely to look to films such as The Eye of the Needle, the overlooked The Hunter starring Willem Dafoe, Oranges and Sunshine and (personal favourite) Snowtown. No supporting actor/actress category in the IFs has meant there is no room for the likes of Lucas Pittaway (Snowtown) and the young Morgana Davies (The Hunter).
First established in 1999, the IF Awards have undergone a number of names according to its sponsor (the Jameson IF Awards being the current name) and, with its on-line polls, have frequently bucked the trend as far as awards are concerned.
Jacki Weaver may have received a National Board of Review award along with an Oscar nomination for her performance in Animal Kingdom last year, but the veteran actress missed out at the IF Awards. That particular category was won by the young Caitlin Stasey for her role in Australia’s most commercially successful film of the year, Tomorrow When the War Began.
The Black Balloon was the most awarded Australian film of 2008, but the IF Awards chose Men’s Group, a film almost exclusively restricted to festival screenings, as its best film.
Not disimilar in style to Men’s Group, the feature Face to Face could well cause a few surprises come awards night.