Looking for Grace selected in official competition for Venice International Film Festival

Sue Brooks the first female director in 15 years to represent Australia in Venice’s most prestigious and competitive section

Looking for Grace will be the first film by a female Australian director to screen in competition at the Venice Film Festival in 15 years. The film, written and directed by Sue Brooks, will have its world premiere in the key section of Venice.

Richard Harris, Head of Business and Audience at Screen Australia, says: “This is sensational news for the film, the team and in particular for director Sue Brooks. Sue’s is a distinctive directorial voice and it is a great honour to be in official competition at one of the world’s most prestigious festivals. For Australia to have such a strong representation across all categories of the festival was already somewhat unique, but to be in official competition as well is something very special.”

About Looking for Grace

From the director of the acclaimed Japanese Story comes Looking for Grace, a hilarious, profound and heartbreaking work about the complexity of the simple things in life.

It tells the story of Grace, 16, who runs away from home. Her parents, Dan and Denise, head off on the road across the Western Australian wheatbelt with a retired detective, Norris, to try and get her back. But life unravels faster than they can put it back together. Grace, Dan and Denise learn that life is confusing and arbitrary, but wonderful. Looking for Grace is about how we make sense of the mess of our lives and what it all means. It is a wry drama about lies, secrets, small and large griefs and love.

Looking for Grace stars Richard Roxburgh (Rake, Moulin Rouge), Radha Mitchell (the Waiting City, Melinda and Melinda, Finding Neverland), Odessa Young (The Daughter) and Terry Norris (The Dressmaker, Paper Planes). It’s produced by Lizzette Atkins, Sue Taylor and Alison Tilson. Executive producers include Antonio Zeccola, Benjamin Zeccola, Michael J Werner and Nelleke Driessen. International sales are being handled by Fortissimo-HK and Australian distribution by Palace Films.

Director Sue Brooks says: “There is only one Venice. To be walking the red carpet with some of the best filmmakers in the world is an astonishing, exciting honour.”

Key investors in the film include Gecko Films, Taylor Media, Unicorn Films, ScreenWest and Lotterywest, Screen Australia, Melbourne International Film Festival Premiere Fund, Soundfirm and Film Victoria.

The announcement follows last week’s news of Tanna being selected for Venice Critics’ Week, and Early Winter and The Daughter being selected for Venice Days. This will be the first time ever that Australia has had films screening across all categories of the festival Venice Officiel as well as the side bars of Venice Days and Venice Critics’ Week. The festival runs 2 to 12 September 2015.

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