Australia’s top screen achievements were recognised at the 6th AACTA Awards ceremony presented by Foxtel, held at The Star Event Centre in Sydney last night.
A total of 20 awards were presented, following the 33 awards announced at Monday’s industry luncheon presented by Blue Post.
Some of Australia’s top film and television stars took to the stage to present awards including AACTA president Geoffrey Rush, Rose Byrne, George Miller, Jessica Mauboy, Stephen Curry, Marta Dusseldorp, Jessica Marais and Culture Club’s Boy George.
In addition to the presentation of the awards, the evening’s musical performances included Culture Club, a performance of “Tainted Love” from Jessica Mauboy, and Dami Im showed off her classical piano skills during a tribute for the 20th anniversary of Australian film Shine. Paul Kelly gave a moving performance to accompany the In Memoriam segment of the ceremony alongside his daughters, Madeline and Memphis, with Charlie Owen on guitar.
Feature Film And Documentary Awards
Hacksaw Ridge followed an impressive four awards at Monday’s Industry Luncheon with a further five awards including: Best Film presented by Foxtel and Best Original Screenplay (awarded to Andrew Knight and Robert Schenkkan).
Mel Gibson received the AACTA Award for Best Direction, 14 years after receiving his last AFI or AACTA accolade, the AFI Global Achievement Award, and 20 years since receiving the Best Direction Oscar for Braveheart.
Receiving Awards for their performances in Hacksaw Ridge were Andrew Garfield for Best Lead Actor and Hugo Weaving, receiving the AACTA Award for Best Supporting Actor for the second year in a row.
The Daughter scooped up the remaining two performance Awards, totalling three awards for the 6th AACTA Awards season.
Miranda Otto received her first AACTA Award for Best Supporting Actress, following five previous AFI Award nominations. Odessa Young received the AACTA Award for Best Lead Actress at just 18, making her the youngest of the seven actresses to win the award for their feature film debut.
Oscar and Emmy Award winner Eva Orner’s documentary, Chasing Asylum, received the AACTA Award for Best Feature Length Documentary.
Elizabeth Debicki and Samuel Johnson both won their second AFI or AACTA Awards, receiving the AACTA Awards for Best Lead Actress in a Television Drama for The Kettering Incident (Foxtel, Showcase) and Best Lead Actor in a Television Drama for Molly (Seven Network), respectively.
The Kettering Incident (Foxtel, Showcase) also received the AACTA Award for Best Telefeature or Mini Series, while Wentworth (Foxtel, SoHo) received the AACTA Award for Best Television Drama Series.
In the comedy category, ABC’s Upper Middle Bogan earned its first AACTA Award for Best Television Comedy Series.
Also receiving their first Awards were Sarah Scheller and Alison Bell, who received the AACTA Award for Best Screenplay in Television for ABC Comedy Showroom – The Letdown (ABC).
Having received its fifth consecutive nomination, Masterchef Australia (Network Ten) scooped up the AACTA Award for Best Reality Television Series for the second year in a row.
Gruen (ABC) received the AACTA Award for Best Light Entertainment Television Series, while Destination Flavour Scandinavia (SBS) received the inaugural AACTA Award for Best Lifestyle Television Program.
AACTA Longford Lyell Award
A ceremony highlight was the presentation of Australia’s highest screen accolade, the AACTA Longford Lyell Award, to Paul Hogan.
The Award was presented to Hogan by Shane Jacobson, with tributes from Michael Caton, Ernie Dingo, Delvene Delaney, John Brown, Peter Faiman, Adam Hills and Dave Hughes, among others.
AACTA Trailblazer Award
The AACTA Trailblazer Award was presented to Isla Fisher, who attended the ceremony with her husband Sacha Baron Cohen.
An AACTA Award and Logie nominated actress, and self-described comic-actress, Fisher is a strong advocate for comedic roles for women in Hollywood and is also an acclaimed dramatic actress and successful author.
Byron Kennedy Award
Acclaimed artist and director Lynette Wallworth was the recipient of the Byron Kennedy Award which celebrates outstanding creative enterprise within the screen industry and includes a $10,000 prize. Known for her innovative use of virtual reality, Wallworth’s career spans the globe, moving across continents and uniting international audiences.