Byron Bay is gearing up for its 11th film festival – a festival which showcases independent, challenging cinema, and the very latest in the immersive medium of Virtual Reality.
Running over ten days and featuring more than 170 independent films, the festival attracts filmmakers and film lovers from all over the world, drawn by the relaxed and stimulating atmosphere and stunning location.
The festival encourages and celebrates the work of young Australian filmmakers. Almost 100 of them have submitted films into the Best Young Australian Filmmaker competition, which is open to Australian directors under 25 and offers reduced entry fees for their films.
Surfing, youth issues and music are primary concerns in the choice of documentaries selected, as is music. The best music videos of the year are shown together in an evening at a local venue – one of many party nights within the festival.
BBFF17 has been launched with a two minute promotional film that pays homage to the region, based around a poem, ‘Byron’, by David Nobay, the creative chairman of cutting-edge Sydney ad agency Marcel, and made by acclaimed commercials director Justin McMillan, now a Byron resident.
For both men it was a labour of love. David, a frequent visitor to Byron Bay, says “it remains the most precious spot on the earth for me. There's something in the light here that breathes creativity back into me.”
For McMillan, who co-directed the hit big-wave film 'Storm Surfers 3D', the project was also personally special: “Byron is my home. It's where I surf every morning. It's where I feel most secure personally, yet most inspired creatively.”