Watch the best of Australian cinema at the Winton Royal Open Air Theatre.
Watch the best of Australian cinema at the Winton Royal Open Air Theatre.

Australian film festival brings much-needed boost to CQ

A SMALL town in Queensland's central west will get a much-needed funding boost when it hosts an Australian film festival this weekend.

It's full steam ahead for the seventh annual Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival, as the celebration of Australian cinematic talent returns to Winton from September 18 to 26.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival is expected to be the only large-scale event in outback Queensland this year, providing a boost to the regional economy.

Festival director Mark Melrose says the festival will bring life, colour and the best of the Australian film industry to the Winton community, at a time many small businesses and tourism providers are struggling.

"The festival has faced unprecedented circumstances this year, so more than ever before, we're excited to bring the largest film festival dedicated to Australian cinema to Winton and Outback Queensland locals and travellers," he said.

"There is no better time to support local and plan an adventure in our own backyard.

"The festival not only showcases the persevering Australian spirit on-screen, you also get to experience the beauty and hospitality of our breathtaking outback regions."

Winton will host the 7th annual Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival in 2020.
Winton will host the 7th annual Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival in 2020.

Vision Splendid is the largest film festival in the world dedicated to Australian cinema and looks to highlight the inspiring works of the local film industry

Movie buffs and adventurers will immerse themselves in a unique outback experience across a nine-day program, with screenings under the stars in Winton's 102-year-old Royal Open Air Cinema.

It will also host educational masterclasses and workshops, live entertainment, kid's club and special guests such as producer, Chris Brown.

Centred around the 2020 theme 'Planes, Trains and Automobiles', the program celebrates Australia's love affair with travel, adventure and blue skies, showcasing the nation's pioneering spirit in films.

From the highly anticipated world premiere of The Flood to Rachel Griffith's Ride Like a Girl and family favourite, Go!, the festival includes something for everyone from young families to grey nomads and budding filmmakers.

Winton Royal Open Air Theatre.
Winton Royal Open Air Theatre.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the global pandemic had impacted economies and industries around the world and unfortunately many events had to be cancelled.

"It's fantastic to see this wonderful event able to go ahead safely, which will provide a great tourism boost for the region," she said.

"The Queensland Government is proud to continue to support the Vision Splendid Outback Film as part of the Year of Outback Tourism program which will ensure the festival remains at the heart of our arts landscape.

"Outback Queensland is not just a holiday, it's a great adventure and I encourage people to get out there, support our tourism businesses which is vital for our economic recovery."

Originally scheduled to be held in June, the event has been reviewed and will be held in line with the industry framework for COVID Safe Events in Queensland.

Visit the website for more information or to purchase tickets.