World premieres of the films “Inside”, “Runt” and the screening of “Megalopolis” in IMAX among the highlights of the MIFF program

World premieres of the films “Inside”, “Runt” and the screening of “Megalopolis” in IMAX among the highlights of the MIFF program

From a Melbourne-set coming-of-age prison drama to a passion project four decades in the making, it’s all set to hit the Melbourne International Film Festival next month. The full lineup will be announced tonight.

This year’s programme includes 250 feature, short and entertainment films, including world premieres of Australian feature films Inside AND Midgetwith an IMAX screening of Francis Ford Coppola’s sprawling sci-fi drama Megalopolis.

MIFF artistic director Al Cossar described this year’s lineup as a mix of “things you’ve been waiting months to see and others you never thought you’d get a chance to see.”

“This year’s MIFF programme, as every year, is a multi-faceted film extravaganza designed to delight and certainly bring out the best in the imagination,” he said.

“We’re thrilled to welcome audiences back – come and enjoy loads of films at Melbourne’s favourite screening this winter.”

Charles Williams’ debut feature film set in the Victorian era Inside is one of ten films competing for this year’s $140,000 Bright Horizons Award, which honors first-time and second-time filmmakers.

The film is executive produced by Thomas M Wright and stars Vincent Miller as Mel Blight, a young man who, after being transferred from a juvenile detention centre to an adult prison, is taken under the wing of Mark Shepard (Cosmo Jarvis), Australia’s most hated criminal, and Warren Murfett (Guy Pearce), leading to a paternal triangle between the three men. The cast includes Toby Wallace, Tara Morice, Chloé Hayden and Michael Logo. Production took place in the state late last year, with Marian Macgowan and Kate Glover producing for Macgowan Films and Never Sleep Pictures respectively.

“Julie is silent”

The competition will also feature the debut feature film by American director India Donaldson. Goodin which seventeen-year-old Lily Collias plays a girl who discovers an uncomfortable truth after being drawn into a journey with her divorced father and his also divorced friend; a drama by English director Luna Carmoon Treasureabout a young woman struggling with grief, trauma, and the hoarding habits imposed on her by her mother, starring Saura Lightfoot Leon and Joseph Quinn; the debut of American playwright Annie Baker Planet Janetabout how 11-year-old Lacy (Zoe Ziegler), full of needs and worries, tries to cope with the mystery of her mother, Janet (Julianne Nicholson), during a vacation in the 1990s.

In addition to the US and UK, the entries include a film by Belgian director Leonard Van Dijl Julie is silentwhich tells the story of a young tennis star who teeters on the edge of sporting glory when her coach at a prestigious training academy is accused of inappropriate behavior; Bosnian-Dutch director Ena Sendijarević Sweet dreamsa satire focusing on the consequences of the decision of a wealthy Dutch patriarch who opposes the colonial invasions of the Netherlands; Universal languagea drama in which Canadian writer and director Matthew Rankin tells the story of two young kids who find a banknote and set off on a journey that takes them back to their childhood.

Somali drama Mo Harawe will be screened in competition at Cannes A village next to paradiseabout a makeshift family living in a cramped one-bedroom apartment in a small fishing village, trying to create a better life for themselves and others; an animated feature film by Latvian filmmaker Gints Zilbalodis Flowa wordless tale of a menagerie of animals stranded on a boat who must work together to survive a catastrophic flood; and another selection from the Un Certain Regard series About becoming a guinea fowlin which writer-director Rungano Nyoni describes the shameful silence of a middle-class Zambian family following the death of one of their own.

Adam Driver and Nathalie Emmanuel in “Megalopolis”

One of the biggest stories at this year’s Cannes Film Festival was Francis Ford Coppola’s controversial debut Megalopolis, which the 85-year-old filmmaker made for more than $120 million of his own money after studios refused to finance his vision. Starring Adam Driver, Jon Voight and Shia LeBeouf, the story of an architect who wants to rebuild New York as a utopia after a devastating disaster that took more than four decades to come to fruition will be the subject of a one-off screening at IMAX Melbourne.

Joining this huge “fairy tale” as part of MIFF’s Headliners series is body horror by Coralie Fargerat SubstanceStarring Demi Moore, Dennis Quaid and Margaret Qualley; a romantic drama by Mumbai-based director Payal Kapadia Everything we imagine as light; A casual drama by Chinese director Jia Zhang-ke Caught by the tides; Aaron Schimberg Different personin which Sebastian Stan plays his Silver Bear-winning role at the Berlin Film Festival as an aspiring actor who learns that self-confidence is not superficial; a historical drama The Great Journeyfor which Miguel Gomes was named best director at Cannes; Guy Maddin Gossipa satire set in a German forest near a fictional G7 summit, starring Cate Blanchett; an audience award-winning film by Iranian director Mohammad Rasoulof SFF Sacred Fig Seedsand David Cronenberg’s deeply personal reflection on loss, longing and grief, Shrouds.

Among the non-competitive events in Australia will be the world premiere of the aforementioned family film Midgetdirected by John Sheedy, starring Lily La Torre, Celeste Barber and Jai Courtney; science fiction thriller by Will Howarth and Tom McKeith In vitro; and Paul Goldman’s boxing drama Children’s snow.

From left: Lily La Torre, Celeste Barber, Jack La Torre, Jai Courtney and Genevieve Lemon in “Runt”

In terms of documentary, Krunal Padhiar and co-director Semara Jose have made a film focusing on the referendum Voice Voice will have its world premiere, as will Danielle MacLeanh and Sala Balharrie Like my brotherwhich follows four young women from the Tiwi Islands who dream of playing professional football in the AFLW. John Hughes twilight timeAlso featured is a portrait of Australian scientist, agitator and surveillance expert Des Ball.

As previously announced, Adam Elliot’s animated film shot in Docklands Memories of a Snail will open the festival by screening films alongside other titles from the Premier MIFF Fund Magic Beacha new version of Alison Lester’s beloved illustrated children’s book by Robert Connolly; Justin Kurzel Ellis Parkdocumentary about musician Warren Ellis’ quest to establish an animal shelter in Sumatra; Natalie Bailey’s comedy-drama selected for SXSW Audrey; and Eliza Cox Queens of Concrete.

The retrospective will feature a celebration of Australian queer cinema pioneer Stephen Cummins following the restoration of nine of his short films by the National Film and Sound Archive, as well as a screening of Richard Roxburgh’s 2007 AFI Best Film winner, Romulus, my fatherstarring Eric Bana and then-10-year-old Kodi Smit-McPhee. MIFF will also pay tribute to cinema’s favorite reptilian, amphibian kaiju with the Godzilla 70th Anniversary Marathon presented by Asahi.

This year, the main star of the MIFF Shorts section is Back in Ink: Animated Short Films Remastereda selection of lost classics, including George Pal’s 1944 stop-motion animated Puppetoon, Mannie Davis’ 1939 Terrytoon, and seven shorts – shot between 1928 and 1939 – by the Fleischer Brothers (creators of Betty Boop and Koko the Clown), featuring jazz collaborations with Louis Armstrong and Cab Calloway. There’s also the Cannes Palme d’Or short film winner The Man Who Couldn’t Keep Silentby director Nebojša Slijepčević; Winner of the Sundance Short Film Grand Jury Prize in the Short Film category by Àlex Lora Cercós Masterpiece; and a two-person show in Sydney directed by Lionel Seah, selected for Cannes Wilted flowers.

MIFF 2024 will run from 8-25 August, with the MIFF Awards Ceremony taking place on Saturday 24 August at Rydges Melbourne. A limited slate of festival highlights will be available digitally across Australia from 9-25 August via MIFF Online – streaming via ACMI.

The regional MIFF festival will run from 16-18 August and 23-25 ​​August, with screenings in Bendigo (Star Cinema, Eaglehawk), Castlemaine (Theatre Royal), Echuca (Paramount), Geelong (Village and Pivotonian), Rosebud (Peninsula Cinemas), Morwell (Village) and Shepparton (Village).

Tickets for MIFF 2024 will go on general sale on Tuesday, July 16 at 9:00 AM.