Big Screen Symposium

Cate Shortland is one of Australia’s most lauded filmmakers, and in her 15 years in the industry has created some of Australia’s most significant drama work.

Cate wrote and directed her debut feature film SOMERSAULT, a coming-of-age drama which follows a young girl as she runs away to the Australian Alps. The film premiered at Un Certain Regard at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival, where it gained much attention, and went on to screen at a number of other film festivals worldwide including TIFF, Sydney, Edinburgh, Tokyo and Stockholm film festivals. It sold to international distributors including Magnolia (US), Paramount (Germany), and had a theatrical release in over 15 countries. At home in Australia it made history by winning 13 of its 15 nominations at the Australian Film Institute Awards.

In television Cate is known as both a writer and director. As a screenwriter she has worked on acclaimed TV mini series THE KETTERING INCIDENT, a chilling eight-part mystery set in the wilds of Tasmania (currently available on NZ’s VOD service Lightbox), THE DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND, DEADLINE GALLIPOLI, and THE SLAP. As a director, Cate’s credits include directing multiple episodes of THE SECRET LIFE OF US and the mini series THE SILENCE.

In 2012, Cate co-wrote and directed her second feature film LORE, a german co-production which follows the journey of a young girl fleeing Allied Forces in the immediate aftermath of WWII in Germany. The german language film is based on british book THE DARK ROOM by Rachel Seiffert. It premiered in competition at the Sydney Film Festival, and went on to win four awards at the Stockholm International Film Festival, including the Bronze Horse for best film. It won critical acclaim internationally, and gained theatrical releases across Europe and the US. It was Australia’s entry in the Academy Awards in 2013.

Most recently, Cate directed THE BERLIN SYNDROME based on a book by Melanie Joosten, adapted by Shaun Grant. The film will be released internationally in 2017.

See Cate Shortland in the following sessions:

Screenwriting Masterclass with Cate Shortland – Sat 24th September, 2:45 pm. 

The Makings Of Great TV with Cate Shortland & Tony Krawitz – Sun 25th September, 9:40 am.