Filmmakers, Start Your Engines! TROPFEST ADDS DSLR CATEGORY AND A NEW CAR!

Filmmakers around Australia should rev up their engines and dust off their equipment as entries for the 2013 edition of the world’s largest short film festival, Movie Extra Tropfest, officially open this month.

The winning filmmaker is set to receive enormous attention from the local and international film community, a $10,000 cash prize, a trip to Los Angeles for ‘a week of meetings’ with film execs and, for the first time in Tropfest history, a brand new car, thanks to new Major Partner, Toyota.

As well as arguably the world’s richest prize pool for filmmakers, Tropfest offers Finalists the chance to have their work viewed by approximately 150,000 people LIVE at venues across Australia on Sunday, 17 February 2013. And once again, Tropfest’s Naming Rights Partner, Movie Extra, will screen the event live to hundreds of thousands more via their subscription TV channel.

Nikon, world leader in camera and lens technology, will bring an exciting new element to this year’s competition with the introduction of the new DSLR film category, in which all entries must be made entirely on a DSLR camera. The category will showcase the versatility and capabilities of video recording technology in DSLR’s and will give filmmakers a new, accessible outlet to express their creativity.

Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned professional, all you have to do to enter Tropfest is start shooting. Films must not exceed seven minutes and, in long-standing festival tradition, must contain the Tropfest Signature Item (TSI), which for 2013 is “BALLOON”. Entries will close on January 3, 2013.

Entering Tropfest is simple and organisers are expecting this year’s competition to be hotly contested, as the Festival continues to grow both at home and abroad. Once again, Tropfest will fly all national and international Finalists to Sydney for Festival Night.

Last year’s winner Alethea Jones says her $10,000 cash prize supported by Kennedy Miller Michell, trip to LA supported by the Motion Picture Association, and Nikon camera changed her life. She has had a very busy year and is heading to LA next month for casting sessions on her new US feature film.  Alethea is also pitching another feature with one of her writing partners, also in the USA, and spent part of June at Tropfest Las Vegas where her film, “Lemonade Stand,” was a Finalist in the All Star Competition.

Kicking off on February 15, Tropfest will host a three-day Festival of late night screenings, parties and the hugely popular filmmaker symposium, Tropfest Roughcut, in Sydney, Australia’s proud home of short film. Then, on Sunday 17th, the rest of Australia will be invited to join in via the main event, where Finalist films will be judged live by a panel of celebrity and industry judges. In previous years, the jury has included the likes of Nicole Kidman, Toni Collette, Geoffrey Rush, Cate Blanchett, Russell Crowe, Baz Luhrmann, Ewan McGregor, Asher Keddie, Elijah Wood, Tobey Maguire and many more.

Tropfest Founder and Director John Polson says: “I want to welcome back Movie Extra, our naming rights partner, as well as Nikon, Kennedy Miller Mitchell, the MPA, Toyota and the rest of our incredible supporters for coming to the party this year. What started in a café in front of 200 people is now a bonafide international festival – arguably the world’s first global film festival. I love the idea of being able to provide the world’s next hot talent not only with an amazing week of meetings with some of the most influential people in the film world, but with a brand new Toyota. Nice.”

NSW Minister for Tourism, Major Events and the Arts, George Souris, says: “Tropfest has become one of the world’s greatest short film festivals and is a major part of a line-up of world class summer events on the NSW Calendar.”

“It’s a time when Sydney City streets, beaches and parks become the stage for free outdoor events.

“Congratulations to John Polson and the Tropfest team for creating such a successful event that not only showcases our Harbour City to the world, but also provides a springboard for filmmakers of all ages and experience.”

Tropfest not only attracts entrants from across the globe for its Australian competition, but hosts fully-fledged festivals in Arabia, New Zealand, the USA, with others in planning.

For more information go to tropfest.com/au/submit