23 December 2013 1:59 AM, PST | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Australian films and co-productions are eligible, if they have not had a theatrical release locally.

CinefestOz has secured its position as part of Australia’s major film festival scene and won the hearts of Australian filmmakers by introducing an annual $89,000 (A$100,000) cash prize for best Australian film.

“We will be requiring the films to have not had a theatrical release in Australia,” CinefestOz board member Helen Shervington told ScreenDaily. “Co-productions with Australia are eligible, as are feature length documentaries. We will set up a pre-selection committee and imagine, in the first instance, that we will have four to six films in competition.”

Other criteria are yet to be determined including whether films have to be world, Australian or Western Australian premieres.

Entries will be accepted from February 28 to June 30 in time for the 2014 edition of the festival, which will run from August 20 to 24.

The new prize is the biggest for film in Australia – the Sydney Film Prize »

- Sandy.George@me.com (Sandy George)

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