Rowan Woods is an acclaimed Australian screen director and President of the Australian Directors Guild. He is Vice President of the International Federation of Coalitions for Cultural Diversity (reporting to UNESCO) and his past roles include Head of Directing at AFTRS (2016-2023). He is currently completing a PHD at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), investigating screen direction for traditional and online platforms.
Rowan Woods’ debut feature film THE BOYS premiered in competition at the Berlin Film Festival and was awarded BEST DIRECTOR at the Australian Film Institute Awards. His second feature LITTLE FISH starred Academy Award winner Cate Blanchett and Hugo Weaving and was nominated for 13 AFI AWARDS.
He has directed many award-winning TV and streamed series including Rake for the ABC. His work has been nominated and won several Australian and International Awards including the ADG Award for Best Direction in a Telemovie for THE BROKEN SHORE (2013), Special Jury Prize at Series Mania for THE KETTERING INCIDENT (2016), and a BAFTA for NOWHERE BOYS (2019).
Corrie Chen is a highly sought-after, award winning writer/director who works in drama and comedy.
Corrie directed the Stan Original mini-series Bad Behaviour for Matchbox Pictures, which recently premiered at the 2023 Berlinale in Official Competition. She also directed the multi award-winning Goalpost/SBS mini-series New Gold Mountain released in 2021 (winner of Australian Directors Guild Award for Best Mini series).
She recently completed The Artful Dodger for Disney+ starring David Thewlis. Her other episodic work includes: AACTA award-winning series Wentworth (Fremantle/Foxtel) and all three series of the International Emmy-nominated Mustangs FC (Matchbox Pictures/ABC), as well as the SBS comedy series Homecoming Queens, amongst many other shows.
HUNTER PAGE LOCHARD
Hunter Page Lochard was most recently seen in the second season of the award winning series THE NEWSREADER for the ABC and will next be seen in the feature film KID SNOW. His other recent credits include the ABC drama series BARONS and the ABC/NBCUniversal critically acclaimed series FIRES. He is also one of the regular hosts of Playschool on the ABC.
Hunter starred as “Cleverman” in the ABC’s ground breaking series CLEVERMAN, which premiered at the 2016 Berlin Film Festival, aired on SUNDANCE TV in the US, for which he was nominated for the Graham Kennedy Most Outstanding Newcomer Logie Award.
Hunter made his feature film debut in Rachel Perkins’ award winning film, BRAN NUE DAE. His other feature film credits include STREAMLINE, SPEAR, which premiered at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, THE SAPPHIRES, which screened in Official Selection at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival and AROUND THE BLOCK which screened at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival.
His other television credits include Stan’s series EDEN, ABC / ABC Studios International series HARROW, LES NORTON and SOUL MATES for the ABC, Foxtel’s critically acclaimed series WENTWORTH, TIDELANDS for Netflix, Nine Network’s WATER RATS, SBS’ EAST WEST 101, and NiTV’s series SHADOW TRACKERS.
Hunter has appeared on stage in ELEKTRA ORESTES for Belvoir; SUGARLAND for ATYP; Stephen Page’s BLAK, KIN (GOMA Tour), BOOMERANG and SKIN for the Bangarra Dance Theatre; BLOODLAND for the Sydney Theatre Company and Adelaide Festival; BLACK DIGGERS for the Queensland Theatre Company and Sydney Festival; and BROTHERS WRECK for Company B, which earned him the ‘Most Outstanding Newcomer’ at the 2015 Glugs Awards and saw him nominated for Best Male Actor in a Play at the 2015 Helpmann Awards. He also won “Best Newcomer” at the 2014 Sydney Theatre Awards for BROTHERS WRECK, BLACK DIGGERS and SUGARLAND.
His short films include Adrian Wills’ ARCADIA and Wayne Blair’s BLACK TALK and THE DJARN DJARNS, which won the Crystal Bear for Best Short Film at the 2005 Berlin International Film Festival.
Hunter wrote, directed and starred in the short film DJALI which premiered at the 2018 Sydney Film Festival. He directed the ABC’s family show THALU, has written and directed for PLAYSCHOOL, as well as BEEP & MORT and THE WONDER GANG and is in development on several television and feature film projects as writer and director.
As Head of Curation for SBS On Demand, Fiona is part of the leadership team of Australia’s most diverse and distinctive streaming destination.
Fiona manages a team of curators and content specialists, dedicated to showcasing more than 15,000 hours of movies, TV series, sport, news and factual programming from around the world, in over 60 languages.
Fiona’s career in the Australian screen industry includes entertainment journalism and film criticism, and she is also the host and producer of SBS Australia’s award-winning Eyes On Gilead: The Handmaid’s Tale Companion podcast.
Rahel Romahn is one of the finest actors of his generation. He has worked professionally in Film, Television and Theatre since the age of 13 and continuously grown the plethora of experience he has built in Australia. He was nominated for an AACTA and Logie awards for his complex portrayal of a troubled youth in The Principal.
Since then, Rahel has starred in tv shows such as, Shantaram, Wolf Like Me, God’s Favourite Idiot, Australian Gangster, Mr Inbetween and Underbelly. His film credits include, Down Under, Alex and Eve, Ali’s Wedding, Little Monsters, Here Out West, Streets of Colour and the yet to be released films, Wizards!, Mad Max: Furiosa & The Surfer.
He has also starred in seven plays at the highly esteemed Sydney Theatre Company in the last 3 years and most recently played Mozart on stage opposite Michael Sheen in the highly acclaimed show Amadeus, at the 50th Anniversary of the Opera House. Rahel is fast becoming one of the most sought-after actors both in Australia and Internationally.
He was the most recent winner of the prestigious Heath Ledger Scholarship and is represented by More/Medavoy Management in the USA and Shanahan Management in Australia.
Gina Dellabarca is the Festival Director and co-founder of Show Me Shorts Film Festival, Aotearoa New Zealand’s leading international short film festival. The festival puts on more than 100 screenings at 40 cinemas nationwide each year. They also produce a range of educational programmes and operate a sales agency.
Dellabarca is Vice-chair of the Board for the Short Film Conference – a world-wide organisation working to promote the status of the short film and unite the global short film community.
She has tertiary qualifications in film, marketing and management from Victoria University of Wellington. Her background includes cinema management, marketing and publicity. She is a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) for services to the New Zealand film industry.
Gillian Moody, a Wodi Wodi woman who grew up and is based in Sydney with family ties to the Wreck Bay community in Jervis Bay NSW. Gillian has worked in both management and production roles during her extensive years in the screen industry, most notably at SBS Television and as an Investment and Development Manager in Screen Australia’s Indigenous Department. She is well respected for her advocacy for First Nation Stories as a Producer, Writer, Director, Industry Mentor and Advisor and Story Developer.
In 2016 Gillian Series Produced the 6 x 30 min Documentary TV Series FAMILY RULES for NITV before spending a year working with Bunya Production through a producing internship in 2017/18 which saw her work across programs Mystery Road TV Series 1 and Blue Water Empire. A 2018 co-production saw Gillian produce and continue creative collaborations with Director Adrian Russell Wills with the production of the documentary BLACK DIVAZ, having premiered at the Sydney Queer Screen Mardi Gras Film Festival it received the Audience Award for Best Documentary, before screening on NITV and SBS1.
In 2019 Gillian produced the short film TIES THAT BIND with writer/director Michael Hudson which premiered at Sydney Film Festival and won the Event Cinema Award for Best Australian Short Screenplay. Gillian also Series Produced online sketch series NICE SHORTS in 2019. Gillian continued her collaboration as producer with Adrian Russell Wills and as co-directors on a personal feature documentary KINDRED. Gillian also produced KATELE (Mudskipper) awarded the 2023 Flickerfest Best Australian Short Film (Academy Qualifying).
Gillian continues to develop and collaborate on screen projects alongside her current role as Snr Manager, Indigenous Connection at the National Film and Sound Archives.
Amin Palangi is an award-winning filmmaker known for intimate portraits of people in extreme circumstances.
His documentary, LOVE MARRIAGE IN KABUL, won the Audience Award at Sydney Film Festival, Best Direction from the Australian Directors Guild. It was released theatrically in Australia and broadcast internationally in over twenty-six countries.
His credits include shorts (BREAK, SHELTERED, VAFADAR), and web-series (I LUV U BUT).
Amin directs the Persian Film Festival in Australia, and is a Screen Lecturer at the University of New South Wales.
Amin’s debut feature TENNESSINE starring Osamah Sami (Ali’s Wedding, Shayda) premiered at Sydney Film Festival 2023 and is due to release in March 2024.
Isabel Darling is an acclaimed director and producer known for her quintessentially Australian observational documentaries. Her feature documentary, The Carnival, which followed an Australian show family for seven years, made its debut at the 70th Sydney Film Festival and will be broadcast on SBS in 2024. The Carnival received considerable recognition, with features in The Guardian and other major publications. The Monthly hailed it as one of the top two Australian films at the Melbourne International Film Festival.
In 2023, Isabel earned a spot on the shortlist for the Walkley award, showcasing her work on The Carnival, in collaboration with producer Tom Zubrycki. Isabel, who was part of the Director Pathways Program in 2020, also achieved recognition as a finalist at the AIDC Viceland ‘Australiana’ pitch in 2018. Her 2015 film, Being Frank, which tells the story of a Czech immigrant and Australia’s oldest living Olympian, was screened internationally and her 2017 film, Corey the Warrior, was a finalist at both the Melbourne Documentary Film Festival and the Cannes International Film Festival on Disability.
Between 2005 and 2014, Isabel honed her skills as an editor/shooter, collaborating with various production companies across Sydney and Melbourne. She went on to establish Torchlight Media, a production company specialising in documentary and high-level tourism content.
Currently based on the South Coast of NSW, Isabel is a strong advocate for regional filmmakers and has a passion for uncovering unique Australian stories and characters. She is currently in the process of writing a feature screenplay and wrapping up post-production on the short film Little Gifts.
RAINBOW SHORTS JURY
Tony Radevski is a queer writer/director, living and working on the land of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation. His films have screened on television and at film festivals internationally,, including at Flickerfest, Dendy Awards, ATOM Awards, Slamdance, Berlinale Talents, and LA International Short Film Festival.
In 2023, Tony directed and co-produced the queer TV pilot ‘Fanny Scat Investigates’. He was selected for Screen NSW and Australians in Film’s “Hollywood Sessions”, a development initiative aimed at fast-tracking the careers of mid-career writers and directors in the competitive US film and television industry. Tony’s adult animation series ‘Bogan Moths’ won the ‘Stand Up & Pitch’ development prize at the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival 2023.
His TV pilot script, ‘Risen’, was a Finalist Runner Up in the Australian Writers’ Guild John Hinde Award for Excellence in Science Fiction Writing, and he was inducted into the AWG’s ‘Pathways Showcase’. He received development funding from Screen Australia, and the script was on Coverfly’s Red List “Top 20” Sci-Fi TV Series and a semi-finalist in ScreenCraft’s Sci-Fi & Fantasy Screenwriting competition.
Tony’s currently developing a slate of feature and TV projects, including dark comedy features “RIP Baba” and “Closet”, and elevated drama series “Blood Red Town”.
Claud Bailey is an award-winning filmmaker, program producer for LGTBQIA+ teens and co-founder of Transmedium, they make work and spaces that celebrates queerness. Claud’s films have screened at film festivals all over the world (Sydney Film Fest, MIFF, Newfest) and they recently won the Emerging Filmmaker Award at Mardi Gras FIlm Festival. They were awarded the inaugural Wear it Purple Art and Culture Fellowship for 2023 where they developed the new annual grant Queer Futures Fund for young and emerging LGTBQIA+ artists’ art projects.
Claud has created multiple queer storytelling programs for LGBTQIA+ teenagers that offer professional development and community connections. From Stories from the Heart, an annual showcase for eight participants to develop a performance piece with queer industry mentors to MISC., a monthly workshop program with the Sydney Opera House. Claud recently founded Transmedium with Aud Mason-Hyde, a trans-led and youth-centered organization that elevates trans youth and their voices through opportunities for creative expression and connection.
Vonne Patiag is a multiple AACTA, AWGIE, Logie and SPA Award-nominated Writer, Director, Producer and Actor based in Western Sydney.
His recent credits include writing and producing the 4-part series ‘The Unusual Suspects’ for SBS, the feature anthology film ‘Here Out West’, released theatrically in early 2022, and writing on ‘Significant Others’, a 6-part drama for ABC.
Most recently, his short film ‘Too Many Ethnics’ had its World Premiere at Flickerfest 2023.
He is currently working on two features – the feature adaptation of his short film ‘Tomgirl’ funded by Screen Australia, and a new road trip movie as part of the Short to Feature Fasttrack Initiative with Screen NSW..
JAYDEN RATHSAM HUA
Jayden Rathsam Hua is a Chinese Australian writer/director focused on documentary and horror, with a Masters in Producing from AFTRS. His short documentary, the Key of B, won ‘Best Documentary’ at the Lightworks Film Festival and the Gold Award at the Atlanta International Documentary Film Festival.
His short film, SUSHI NOH, has screened at over 30 international film festivals, winning multiple Audience Choice awards in the US and ‘Best Screenplay for an Australian Short’ at Flickerfest 2023 before being released online on Short of the Week, ALTER, and Vimeo Staff Picks.
Since graduating from AFTRS, Jayden has worked at Lingo Pictures and in the VFX Production team at Industrial Light and Magic for Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part 1 (2023). Jayden is an alumnus of the MIFF Accelerator Lab, TIFF Filmmaker Lab, and winner of the 2023 Inner West Film Fest Pitching Competition, panelled by Breathless and Causeway Films with his concept for the SUSHI NOH feature film.
Jayden has since co-founded the genre-focused Australian production company COSMIC SCREAM alongside producers Hugo Koehne and Henry Koehne and is currently in development for the feature film adaptation of SUSHI NOH and MATRIARCH, an Asian-Australian domestic horror with support from Screen Australia.
He is also a producer on the feature film ‘Luna’ under the Screen NSW Fast Track Initiative and is in post-production for his next horror short, BELLOE, due in 2024.
Laneikka Denne is a queer writer and actor from Western Sydney. They were the recipient of the Diversity Entertainment Creative Mentorship 2022, where their play Dead Skin was performed in LA, where they developed the play into a feature film.
Their documentary The Real Meaning of Pleasure has been awarded development funding from Screen Australia and AIDC and won the SHORT CUTS program in 2023.
Laneikka’s screenplay OI was the winner of Open Screenplay’s Best Short Drama in 2022 and is in post-production in Sydney. As an actor, Laneikka is leading two feature films in 2023; Puzzle Box, a horror feature and Salt Along The Tongue, a psychological thriller for distribution in 2024.
She has featured in Flickerfest shorts: Mud Crab and Fruity. Young, queer humans are at the heart of all of Laneikka’s work.
Joseph Raboy was born in the Philippines and migrated to Australia 10 days after he turned 6. Joseph was chosen as the winner of the ‘Equity ‘Neighbours’ Graduate Internship’ Program in 2022 from over 120 applicants.
He was awarded this by Thea McLeod from ‘McLeod Casting’, Andrew Thompson (Producer of ‘Neighbours’), ‘Fremantle’, ‘Showcast’, the ‘Equity Foundation’, ‘Media Super’ and ‘MEAA’.
Joseph was a TOP FOUR FINALIST in all of Australia for the Atlantic Acting School 2023 Scholarship in New York City.
Joseph’s most recent TV credit is ‘Matt Chan’ on ‘Neighbours’ (dir. by Kate Kendall) Joseph’s Feature Film Credits include: Suka (Umbrella Entertainment), dir. Heidi Lee Douglas premiered in 2023.
His upcoming feature film Sahela directed by Raghuvir Joshi and Executive Produced by Oscar Nominated Actor: Dev Patel made its World Premiere at the Adelaide Film Festival in October.
Sahela has also been officially selected for various Film Festivals around the world.