SYDNEY TRAVELLING FILM FESTIVAL
Greater Union Wollongong
When the Sydney Travelling Film Festival hits Wollongong later this month, it will feature a roster of films chosen just for us.
The travelling film festival runs over a weekend in August and features nine full-length films and four short films chosen from the more than 160 films shown during the Sydney Film Festival.
Travelling film festival manager Alicia Emery said the program for every stop on the circuit is different. Part of that is to fit in with when distributors want to give a film a wider release.
"Also, we try and cater to an audience we know will appreciate certain films," Emery said.
"I know that Wollongong has a really big university so we try and get more films that are targeted to a young audience or films we think they might be interested in seeing."
Emery would also like to bring more films to Wollongong but is limited by the fact that the festival takes place on a weekend.
"Wollongong is an exception because it is a larger population compared to other locations on our tour," she said.
"It probably could do with having a longer festival but because we've only got a weekend there's only so much you can program in terms of time and what works for the cinema too."
The festival's opening night features Two Days, One Night, a Belgium effort that stars Oscar winner Marion Cotillard as Sandra, a factory worker who will lose her job unless she can convince her co-workers to forego a bonus.
The bosses came up with the ultimatum, leaving her future in the hands of 15 co-workers. So she spends the weekend trying to convince each one to choose her job over the bonus.
It won Best Film at the Sydney Film Festival and Emery said it's great that it appears in the travelling film festival roster.
"It is a really great solid film so for us to be able to program it is really awesome," she said.
"We have an official competition in the Sydney Film Festival, which selects 12 features from varying countries. If you can get some of those in the mix for the travelling festival it's really good because they're picked for the official competition because they are good and they are strong."
The Australian film The Babadook is also on the bill. It's about a boy who keeps dreaming about a monster and warns his mother about it. Things escalate when she starts to see the monster herself.
The award-winning Indian film The Lunchbox is a love story set around Mumbai's food delivery system and starring Irrfan Khan from Slumdog Millionaire.
Some people have the perception that the travelling film festival features nothing but "arty" films but Emery said that wasn't true.
"I do think there are a lot of independent films that still head down that mainstream genre path that you may see in a cinema anyway," she said.
"Unfortunately they don't necessarily get a release in cinemas because they are a smaller independent film, not a studio film.
"So we do try and cater to some of the more extreme arthouse films, as well as those that skew more towards mainstream films."