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Congratulations to AFTRS alumnus Warwick Thornton, whose new feature Sweet Country won the Special Jury Prize at the 2017 Venice Film Festival.

The film had its world premiere at the festival last week and received a standing ovation which lasted almost five minutes and garnered outstanding international reviews. It also took out the Premio Bisato d’Oro award, the Venice Critic’s award for Best Film.

Inspired by true events, Sweet Country is set in the 1920s on the Northern Territory frontier – where justice itself is put on trial. The film stars Hamilton Morris, Sam Neill, Bryan Brown, Ewen Leslie, Thomas M. Wright, Natassia Gorey-Furber, Anni Finsterer, Matt Day and introducing, Gibson John, Tremayne Doolan and Trevon Doolan.

This week it will screen at the closing night of the Toronto International Film Festival, and also at the upcoming BFI London Film Festival, and will have its Australian premier at the Adelaide Film Festival in October.

Sweet Country will be released around the country in 2018.

See all the 2017 Venice Film Festival winners.

Photo: Director Warwick Thornton on the Alice Springs set of Sweet Country. Courtesy of Transmission Films.