By Kirsten Stevens

This is thefirst ebook to provide an in-depth exam of the historical past, operation, and progress of movie gala's as a cultural phenomenon inside Australia. Tracing the start of movie fairs in Australia within the Fifties via to their current abundance, it asks why movie fairs have prospered as audience-driven spectacles all through Australia, whereas by no means constructing an analogous and marketplace foci in their foreign fellows. Drawing on over sixty-years of archival documents, pageant statement, interviews with competition insiders and ephemera, this booklet opens up a principally uncharted background of movie tradition task in Australia.

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Extra info for Australian Film Festivals: Audience, Place, and Exhibition Culture

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The less disruptive of these two developments for MFF was the arrival of the AFI and its incorporation, alongside FVFS and MUFS, into MFF’s profit dispersal framework. The AFI was established as Australia’s first national screen culture organisation, intended to function as an Australian equivalent to the British Film Institute and operate as a source of film culture and support for a local film industry (French and Poole 2009: 25). Although envisaged as a national organisation that would share equally in the expertise of members of the film society movements in Melbourne and Sydney, the reality was less egalitarian.

Rado sought FIAPF accreditation for this national event as a single multi-city entity, with the intention of then sharing the expense of importing films and organising the festival with his new interstate partners.  Fournier in December 1958, along with April and May 1959, Rado was expressly refused permission to proceed with the Australian Film Festival as a touring event. The Melbourne instillation would be recognised, but no other city would be allowed to screen FIAPF films. Despite these letters, and his official acceptance of FIAPF’s conditions (MFF: Rado 1959), Rado proceeded with the event as planned.

While representatives from the NSW society movement and the SFF were also included, in practical terms, as Lisa French and Mark Poole observe, ‘From 1958 to 1972, MIFF and the AFI were the same organisation’ (2009: 27–28). The AFI’s importance to the festival lay in the symbolic value that the support of an official film organisation could grant the event. Specifically, MFF organisers saw the potential for the AFI to act as a form of national ENTHUSIASTIC AMATEURS: ORIGINS OF AUSTRALIA’S FILM FESTIVAL...

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