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Emmy nominated Oz director Kate Dennis among Australians in Film award recipients

13 September 2017 2:13 AM
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Emmy nominated Australian director Kate Dennis and Oscar nominated Australian screenwriter Luke Davies will be honoured at the sixth annual Australians in Film awards in Los Angeles later this year.

Dennis, who carved herself a place among Hollywood's leading television directors with a stunning Emmy nomination for her work on the critically acclaimed The Handmaid's Tale, will receive the Annette Kellerman Award.

The award, named after the professional swimmer who became one of cinema's first stars in the early 20th century, recognises "trailblazing women" in the US film industry.

"The Australian film community here in LA is so full of talent and so full of support, I feel lucky to be a part of it," she said.

Davies, who was nominated for an Academy Award for his work on Lion, will receive the International Award, which recognises the work of an Australian creative working behind the camera.

Davies said today that LA's Australian film and television community kept him anchored "at times when [his decision to move to LA] seemed like the loneliest and most stupid and unworkable plan.

"I never felt so Australian as when I was 10,000 miles from home and supported by these friends," he said. "It's a hugely pleasant surprise to be recognised by the group that does so much for Australian film here in the US."

The awards, which are held annually, acknowledge individual achievement in the film and television fields; they are given either to Australians, or individuals who have contributed to the Australian film and television industries.

The other award recipients this year are both senior Disney studio executives: vice president of film and television production planning Mary Ann Hughes and senior vice president of production finance Paul Steinke.

Both Hughes and Steinke were involved in bringing key international productions to Australia, including Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales and Thor: Ragnarok.

Each will receive the Ausfilm International Award for their contribution to Australia's film industry.

The recipient of the night's major award, the Orry-Kelly Award, is not announced until the event; it is named for pioneering (and Oscar-winning) Hollywood costume designer Orry Kelly, who was born in Kiama.

Australians in Film president Kate Marks said the awards acknowledged the work of Dennis and Davies and "celebrates work they are producing for audiences globally."

Marks said Hughes and Steinke were both "big supporters of the Australian screen industry.

"Their work at Disney has created many jobs back home, provided opportunities for our technicians to develop their skills and injected millions of dollars into the Australian economy," Marks said.

Australians in Film is a Los Angeles-based entertainment industry advocacy group which runs education, screening and networking programs to support Australian film and television makers working in Hollywood.

Source: theage.com.au

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