Australian Directors Guild Awards 2020: winners

Wins for Neighbours, Upright, The Commons, Hardball & Stateless.

Neighbours, Upright, The Commons, Hardball and Stateless were amongst winners in the 2020 Australian Directors Guild Awards.

Winners were announced in a virtual ceremony last night, with recipients making pre-recorded acceptance speeches.

This year more than 50% of the Awards were also won by female directors, across film, television, online, music and advertising.

ADG President Samantha Lang said: “The Awards come at a moment when key creatives and organisations in our screen industry are lobbying government to ‘Make It Australian’ and keep Australian storytelling on our local and global screens. The films, television shows, music videos, student films and commercial work of directors nominated and awarded tonight are a shining example of the creative, cultural and fiscal success of Australian content. It’s also heartwarming to see an immense diversity of Australian directors awarded tonight – a reflection of who we are – both as content creators – and audiences.”

Kate Kendall (pictured) won for Eve Morey’s final episode last year at Neighbours, directing the death of Sonya.

“I’m thrilled for everyone involved at Neighbours.  This was a huge responsibility in honouring one of our most beloved characters in Sonya.  It was an amazing experience.  Thanks to the ADG for their acknowledgment.  I’m incredibly proud,” she said.

Executive Producer Jason Herbison said: “We are thrilled that Kate has been honoured for her work directing Neighbours.  The episode featured a long running character losing their battle with cancer and Kate’s sensitive direction resonated deeply with our viewers.”

Eve Morey said: “The episode was not only a farewell to the character, it was also the end of Ryan and I working together after 11 years so we were heavily invested emotionally and Kate guided us all the way through the technical and acting process to ensure the story of Sonya was told with truth and integrity.  I couldn’t be more thrilled for her.”

A record 202 entries were received in this year’s ADG Awards, up from 117 in 2019. Ben Lawrence – won Best Direction Feature over $1m for Hearts and Bones.

TV and related winners in bold:

Best Direction of a TV or SVOD Drama Series
Jeffrey Walker – The Commons – Season 1 Episode 1
Nash Edgerton – Mr. Inbetween – Season 2 Episode 4
Peter Andrikidis – Reckoning – Season 1 Episode 4
Tony Krawitz – Secret City – Season 2 Episode 1
Rachel Perkins – Total Control – Season 1 Episode 4
Kevin Carlin – Wentworth – Season 7Episode 10

Best Direction of a TV or SVOD Mini-Series
Mat King – Bloom – Episode 5
Sophie Hyde – The Hunting – Episode 4
Jeffrey Walker – Lambs Of God – Episode 1
Emma Freeman – Stateless – Episode 3

Best Direction of a Documentary Series
Rosie Jones – The Cult Of The Family – Episode 1
Cian O’Clery – Love On The Spectrum – Episode 1
Genevieve Clay Smith – Perspective Shift – Episode 1

Best Direction of a Documentary Feature
Ian Darling – The Final Quarter
Maya Newell – In My Blood It Runs
Peter Hegedus – Lili
Allan Hardy ACS – Viva The Underdogs

Best Direction of a TV or SVOD Comedy Series
Matthew Moore – Diary Of An Uber Driver – Episode 2
Amanda Brotchie – The Letdown – Episode 1
Trent O’Donnell – The Letdown – Season 2 Episode 4
Matthew Saville – Upright – Episode 5

Esben Storm Award for Best Direction of a Children’s TV or SVOD Drama Program
Kacie Anning – Hardball – Episode 6
Isaac Elliott – The Legend of Burnout Barry
Lucy Gaffy – The Unlisted – Episode 10
Rebecca O’Brien – The Unlisted – Episode 13

Best Direction of a TV or SVOD Drama Serial
Renee Webster – The Heights – Episode 15
Darlene Johnson – The Heights – Episode 22
Arnie Custo – Home and Away – Episode 7117
Danny Raco – Home and Away – Episode 7225
David Gould – Home and Away – Episode 7271
Tony Gardiner – Neighbours – Episode 8325
Kate Kendall – Neighbours – Episode 8052

Best Direction of an Animated Project
Jo Boag – Alice-Miranda Friends Forever
Holly Hargreaves – Bonnie The Elephant

The 2020 ADG Awards Ceremony is available to be viewed online via social media on the @AustralianDirectorsGuild facebook page or Click Here to catch up after the show.

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