January 16, 2012

ABC dominates first round of AACTA Awards (3 PHOTOS)

The AACTAs begin life replacing the former Australian Film Institute Awards

The ABC nabbed seven awards in the inaugural AACTA Awards luncheon, the precursor to the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Awards to be held in Sydney on 31 January.

ABC1’s Laid was named best TV comedy series, beating At Home With Julia and twentysomething, while Angry Boys’ creator and star Chris Lilley was awarded the best performance in a comedy series prize. 

The highest-grossing Australian documentary of 2011, Mrs Carey’s Concert, which the ABC has screened, was named best feature length documentary and Bob Connolly and Sophie Raymond were recognised for their direction of that film.

Other winners for the ABC were My Place, which was named best children’s TV series, Jandamarra’s War, which was named best documentary under one hour, and Out Of The Ashes, winning the best cinematography in a documentary prize for David Parer.

SBS picked up two TV prizes. SAS: The Search for Warriors was named best documentary series and murundak: songs of freedom was honoured for its sound in a documentary.

Foxtel’s Showcase series Cloudstreet won the first of what is expected to be a number of awards with a special outstanding achievement in television screen craft prize awarded to its production designer Herbert Pinter.

The key TV awards, including best TV drama series, best telefeature, mini series or short run series, best light entertainment television series and TV direction, screenplay and acting prizes, will be announced at the 31 January ceremony.

In the feature film categories, The Eye of the Storm, The Hunter and Snowtown each picked up two awards each. The Hunter’s cinematographer Robert Humphreys and composers Matteo Zingales, Michael Lira and Andrew Lancaster won their categories while The Eye of the Storm’s production designer Melinda Doring and costume designer Terry Ryan were also honoured.

Veronika Jenet won the best editing prize for Snowtown and that film’s Frank Lipson, Andrew McGrath, Des Kenneally, Michael Carden, John Simpson and Erin McKimm won the best sound prize.

The highest-grossing Australian film of the year, Red Dog, won the AACTA Member’s Choice award.

In the short film categories, The Palace was named best short fiction film for Kate Croser, Anthony Maras and Andros Achilleos and Maras was honoured for his screenplay. Nullarbor was named best short animation.

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