Warwick Thornton wins major award at Directors’ Guild Awards

• TV awards for directors of Neighbours & Tue Story with Hamish & Andy

The Australian Directors’ Guild Awards took place in Sydney on Monday evening and Warwick Thornton took out the top prize of Best Direction in a Feature Film (budget $1 million or over) for Sweet Country, beating stiff competition from previous winner Garth Davis (Mary Magdalene), Anthony Maras (Hotel Mumbai) and Joel Edgerton (Boy Erased).

The ADG Awards took place at the City Recital Hall and presenters included Rachel Griffiths, Rachel Ward, Bryan Brown and Claudia Karvan.

Other winners included Paul Damien Williams who won Best Direction in a Documentary Feature for Gurrumul, Rachel Perkins who won Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Drama Series episode for Mystery Road and Jeffrey Walker who won Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Mini Series and Telefeature for Riot.

This year marks the first time that the Best Feature Film category has been divided into two sections – one for films with budgets of $1 million and over and the second for Best Direction in a Feature Film with a budget under $1 million. Dustin Feneley won Best Direction in a Feature Film (Budget under $1M) for his film Stray.

Cian O’Clery won the Best Direction in a Documentary Series award for his work on Series 1, Episode 1 of Employable Me and Alyssa McClelland won Best Direction in a Short Film for Second Best.

Other winners included Scott Major for Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Drama Serial episode for his work on Episode 7776A of Neighbours and Best Direction in a Children’s TV or SVOD Drama Program went to Nicholas Verso for Grace Beside Me (Series 1, Episode 4).

The Award for Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Comedy Program episode was presented to Colin Cairnes for True Story with Hamish and Andy (Episode Lisa).

COMPLETE LIST OF THE 2019 WINNERS

Best Direction in a Feature Film (Budget $1M or over)
Warwick Thornton for Sweet Country

Best Direction in a Feature Film (Budget under $1M)
Dustin Feneley for Stray

Best Direction in a Short Film
Alyssa McClelland for Second Best

Best Direction in a Student Film
Simon Direen for A Life Together

Best Direction in a Documentary Feature
Paul Damien Williams for Gurrumul

Best Direction in a Documentary Series
Cian O’Clery for Employable Me (Series 1, Episode 1)

Best Direction in a Documentary Short Subject
Richard Jasek for Making a Mark

High Commendation: Annamaria Talas for The Kingdom: How Fungi Made Our World

Best Direction in a Children’s TV or SVOD Drama Program
Nicholas Verso for Grace Beside Me (Series 1, Episode 4)

Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Drama Series episode
Rachel Perkins for Mystery Road (Series 1)

Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Drama Serial episode
Scott Major for Neighbours (Episode 7776A)

Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Mini Series and Telefeature
Jeffrey Walker for Riot

Best Direction in a TV or SVOD Comedy Program episode
Colin Cairnes for True Story with Hamish & Andy (Episode “Lisa”)

Best Direction in a Online Drama Series
Billie Pleffer for Deadlock

Best Direction in a Online Comedy Series
Zoe Pepper for The Big Spaghetti

Best Direction in an Animation Project
Andrew Goldsmith and Bradley Slabe for Lost & Found

Best Direction in Commercial Content
Nicholas Carlton for I Am Mehreen Faruqi (The Australian Greens)

Best Direction in a Commercial Advertisement
Tim Bullock for Armoured Truck (Lotto NZ)

Best Direction in a Music Video
Kate Halpin for Sympathy (Artist: Iluka)

Best Direction in an Interactive or Immersive Title
Lynette Wallworth for Awavena

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