AACTA Winners & Nominees

AFI Past winners

There were 16 feature film nominees at the 1987 AFI Awards, headed by Ground Zero, which was nominated in nine categories. Other films with multiple nominations were The Year My Voice Broke and High Tide (both with 7), Umbrella Woman (6), Belinda and The Place At The Coast (4), The Tale Of Ruby Rose, Travelling North, Bullseye and Shadows Of The Peacock (each with 3) and Those Dear Departed with 2. A memorable feature of 1987 were the first significant performances by newcomers Ben Mendelsohn, Claudia Karvan, Loene Carmen, Noah Taylor and Kaarin Fairfax. Each of them would be nominated for AFI Awards this year.

The nominees for Best Film were Ground Zero, The Year My Voice Broke, High Tide and The Tale Of Ruby Rose. Each had strong claims. The Year My Voice Broke was a beautifully crafted coming of age story, written and directed by John Duigan and backed by the powerful Kennedy Miller team. Ground Zero was ambitious, commercial and often truly exciting. High Tide was a bittersweet and evocative film, sensitively directed by Gillian Armstrong. The less nominated The Tale Of Ruby Rose was the first Australian film accepted by the Venice Film Festival since Careful, He Might Hear You.

The most important awards went to The Year My Voice Broke. It won Best Film for producer George Miller, who had twice won Best Direction (for Mad Max and Mad Max 2). John Duigan won the awards for Best Direction and Best Original Screenplay. He had had two previous nominations for Best Direction (Mouth To Mouth and Winter Of Our Dreams) and three for Best (Original) Screenplay (The Trespassers, Mouth To Mouth and Winter Of Our Dreams). Ben Mendelsohn was named Best Supporting Actor.

Ground Zero’s flair was rewarded with major acknowledgements for Best Cinematography (Steve Dobson), Best Editing (David Pulbrook), Best Sound (Gary Wilkins, Mark Wasiutak, Roger Savage, Livia Ruzic, Craig Carter) and Best Production Design (Brian Thomson). Pulbrook and Dobson were first time nominees. It was Brian Thomson’s second AFI Award and Gary Wilkins’ fifth.

Travelling North was a popular winner in two of the three categories in which it had been nominated: Leo McKern was named Best Lead Actor and David Williamson won his fourth AFI Award.

In the inaugural television awards of 1986, no individual nominations had been announced in the ten prize-winning categories – only the winners had been announced. This was rectified in 1987, with Two Friends receiving five nominations in four of the five telefeature categories, followed by Hunger and The Hour Before My Brother Dies with four each. Michele Fawdon (The Fish Are Safe) won Best Actress in a Telefeature over Rhonda Wilson in The Hour Before My Brother Dies and Emma Coles and Kris McQuade (both from Two Friends). Steve Jacobs was named Best Actor in a Telefeature for A Single Life.

The other three telefeature awards went to Two Friends against strong competition. Helen Garner won the Best Screenplay in a Telefeature award over Louis Nowra (Hunger), Ted Roberts (Just Us) and Daniel Keene (The Hour Before My Brother Dies). Jane Campion took home Best Direction in a Telefeature over Stephen Wallace (Hunger), James Clayden (The Hour Before My Brother Dies) and newcomer Mark Joffe (Watch The Shadows Dance). Jan Chapman’s Best Telefeature award rounded out a successful evening for Two Friends.

In the mini-series section, the Kennedy Miller drama Vietnam led the field with a nomination in each of the five categories, followed by The Great Bookie Robbery and Harp In The South (four each) and In Between (three). Vietnam started the night well with acting awards going to Nicholas Eadie and Nicole Kidman. In Between was a surprise winner in the Best Screenplay in a Mini-Series category. The awards for Best Mini-Series and for Best Direction in a Mini-Series both went to The Great Bookie Robbery, with Ian Bradley winning the former and Marcus Cole and Mark Joffe sharing the latter.

The non-feature awards again showcased exciting new talent. Palisade won Best Experimental Film and Best Cinematography in a Non-Feature Film (both going to Laurie McInnes). Earlier in the year, Palisade had taken the Palme d’Or at Cannes for Best Short Film. Feathers (Producer: Timothy White, Director: John Ruane, Editor: Ken Sallows) was named the Best Short Fiction Film.

Martha Ansara, whose films on social issues had won local and international prizes, received the Byron Kennedy Award, while Paul Riomfalvy, the first director of the New South Wales Film Corporation, received the Raymond Longford Award in tribute to the great success of the Corporation in its ten years of existence.

1987 Winners & Nominees

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FEATURE FILM

  • Best Feature Film
  • Winner:

    The Year My Voice Broke Terry Hayes, Doug Mitchell, George Miller

    Nominees:

    Ground Zero Michael Pattinson
    High Tide Sandra Levy, Antony I. Ginnane
    The Tale Of Ruby Rose Bryce Menzies, Andrew Wiseman

  • Best Achievement in Direction
  • Winner:

    The Year My Voice Broke John Duigan

    Nominees:

    Ground Zero Michael Pattinson, Bruce Myles
    High Tide Gillian Armstrong
    The Tale Of Ruby Rose Roger Scholes

  • Best Original Screenplay
  • Winner:

    The Year My Voice Broke John Duigan

    Nominees:

    Belinda Pamela Gibbons
    Ground Zero Mac Gudgeon, Jan Sardi
    High Tide Laura Jones

  • Best Screenplay adapted from another source
  • Winner:

    Travelling North David Williamson

    Nominees:

    Slate, Wyn And Me Don McLennan
    The Place At The Coast Hilary Furlong
    Vincent Paul Cox

  • Samuelson Award for Best Achievement in Cinematography
  • Winner:

    Ground Zero Steve Dobson

    Nominees:

    Belinda Malcolm McCulloch
    The Umbrella Woman James Bartle
    Warm Nights On A Slow Moving Train Yuri Sokol

  • Spectrum Films Award for Best Achievement in Editing
  • Winner:

    Ground Zero David Pulbrook

    Nominees:

    Bullseye Richard Francis-Bruce
    The Umbrella Woman John Scott
    The Year My Voice Broke Neil Thumpston

  • Best Achievement in Sound
  • Winner:

    Ground Zero Gary Wilkins, Mark Wasiutak, Roger Savage, Livia Ruzic, Craig Carter

    Nominees:

    Belinda Tim Lloyd, Martin Oswin, John Herron, David Huggett, Glen Auchinachie, Dimity Gregson
    High Tide Peter Fenton, Phil Heywood, Ben Osmo, Geoff Krix, John Jordan, Annie Breslin, John Patterson
    Shadows Of The Peacock Tim Lloyd, Greg Bell, Peter Fenton, Phil Heywood, Martin Oswin

  • Best Original Music Score
  • Winner:

    The Tale Of Ruby Rose Paul Schutze

    Nominees:

    Shadows Of The Peacock William Motzing
    The Umbrella Woman Cameron Allen
    Those Dear Departed Phillip Scott

  • Best Achievement in Production Design
  • Winner:

    Ground Zero Brian Thomson

    Nominees:

    Bullseye George Liddle
    The Place At The Coast Owen Paterson
    To Market, To Market Virginia Rouse

  • Best Achievement in Costume Design
  • Winner:

    The Umbrella Woman Jennie Tate

    Nominees:

    Bullseye George Liddle
    The Place At The Coast Anna French
    Those Dear Departed Roger Ford

  • Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
  • Winner:

    Travelling North Leo McKern

    Nominees:

    Ground Zero Colin Friels
    The Umbrella Woman Bryan Brown
    The Year My Voice Broke Noah Taylor

  • Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
  • Winner:

    High Tide Judy Davis

    Nominees:

    Shadows Of The Peacock Wendy Hughes
    The Year My Voice Broke Loene Carmen
    Travelling North Julia Blake

  • Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
  • Winner:

    The Year My Voice Broke Ben Mendelsohn

    Nominees:

    Ground Zero Donald Pleasence
    Initiation Bobby Smith
    The Umbrella Woman Steven Vidler

  • Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
  • Nominees:

    Belinda Kaarin Fairfax
    High Tide Claudia Karvan
    The Place At The Coast Julie Hamilton

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NON-FEATURE FILM

  • Kodak Award for Best Documentary
  • Winner:

    Painting The Town Trevor Graham (Director)

    Nominees:

    Friends And Enemies Tom Zubrycki (Director)
    How The West Was Lost David Noakes (Director)
    The Musical Mariner (Part One) Bill Leimbach (Director)

  • Kodak Award for Best Animated Film
  • Winner:

    Crust John Evan Hughes (Director)

    Nominees:

    224 Dirk de Bruyn (Director)
    In Love Cancer Jenni Robertson (Director)
    Worry Charles Amsden (Director)

  • Kodak Award for Best Short Fiction Film
  • Winner:

    Feathers John Ruane (Director)

    Nominees:

    Damsels Be Damned Wendy Thompson (Director)
    Poetry For An Englishman Martin Daley (Director)
    Spaventapasseri Luigi Acquisto (Director)

  • Kodak Award for Best Experimental Film
  • Winner:

    Palisade Laurie McInnes (Director)

    Nominees:

    Landslides Sarah Gibson, Susan Lambert (Director)
    Nice Coloured Girls Tracey Moffatt (Director)
    Shoppingtown David Caesar (Director)

  • Kodak Award for Best Achievement in Direction
  • Winner:

    The Nights Belong To The Novelist Christina Wilcox

    Nominees:

    Feathers John Ruane
    How The West Was Lost David Noakes
    Spaventapasseri Luigi Acquisto

  • Kodak Award for Best Achievement in Screenplay
  • Winner:

    Witch Hunt Barbara Chobocky, Jeffrey Bruer, Sue Castrique

    Nominees:

    How The West Was Lost David Noakes, Heather Williams
    Smacks And Kicks Catherine Stone
    Spaventapasseri Luigi Acquisto

  • Kodak Award for Best Achievement in Cinematography
  • Winner:

    Palisade Laurie McInnes

    Nominees:

    How The West Was Lost Phillip Bull
    Spaventapasseri Jaems Grant
    The Musical Mariner (Part One) Michael Dillon

  • Kodak Award for Best Achievement in Editing
  • Winner:

    Kick Start Nubar Ghazarian

    Nominees:

    Damsels Be Damned Murray Ferguson
    How The West Was Lost Frank Rijavec
    The Musical Mariner (Part One) Simon Dibbs, Bill Leimbach

  • Kodak Award for Best Achievement in Sound
  • Winner:

    The Musical Mariner (Part One) David Fanshawe, Alasdair MacFarlane, Gary O'Grady

    Nominees:

    Friends And Enemies Keiran Knox, Geoffrey Stitt
    Landslides Howard Spry, Denise Haslem, Geoffrey Stitt, Cameron Allen
    Palisade Gregg Bell, Martin Oswin

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TELEVISION

  • Best Telefeature
  • Winner:

    Two Friends (ABC) Jan Chapman

    Nominees:

    Call Me Mr. Brown (Network Ten) Scott Hicks, Terry Jennings
    Hunger (ABC) Jan Chapman
    The Hour Before My Brother Dies (ABC) Noel Price

  • Best Mini-Series
  • Winner:

    The Great Bookie Robbery (Nine Network) Ian Bradley

    Nominees:

    The Harp In The South (Network Ten) Anthony Buckley
    Vietnam (Network Ten) Doug Mitchell, Terry Hayes, George Miller
    In Between (SBS) Chris Warner, Kim Dalton

  • Best Achievement in Direction in a Telefeature
  • Winner:

    Two Friends (ABC) Jane Campion

    Nominees:

    The Hour Before My Brother Dies (ABC) James Clayden
    Hunger (ABC) Stephen Wallace
    Watch The Shadows Dance (Nine Network) Mark Joffe

  • Best Achievement in Direction in a Mini-Series
  • Winner:

    The Great Bookie Robbery (Nine Network) Marcus Cole, Mark Joffe

    Nominees:

    The Challenge (Nine Network) Chris Thomson
    The Harp In The South (Network Ten) George Whaley
    Vietnam (Network Ten) John Duigan, Chris Noonan

  • Best Original Telefeature Screenplay
  • Winner:

    Two Friends (ABC) Helen Garner

    Nominees:

    The Hour Before My Brother Dies (ABC) Daniel Keene
    Hunger (ABC) Louis Nowra
    Just Us (Seven Network) Ted Roberts

  • Best Original Mini-Series Screenplay
  • Winner:

    In Between (SBS) Maureen McCarthy, Shane Brennan

    Nominees:

    The Challenge (Nine Network) David Phillips
    The Great Bookie Robbery (Nine Network) Philip Cornford, Ian Bradley
    Vietnam (Network Ten) Terry Hayes, John Duigan, Chris Noonan

  • Best Performance by an Actor in a Telefeature
  • Winner:

    A Single Life (ABC) Steven Jacob

    Nominees:

    Army Wives (Network Ten) Shane Connor
    Hunger (ABC) Brendan Higgins
    Tudawali (SBS) Ernie Dingo

  • Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Mini-Series
  • Winner:

    Vietnam (Network Ten) Nicholas Eadie

    Nominees:

    The Challenge (Nine Network) John Wood
    The Harp In The South (Network Ten) Martyn Sanderson
    In Between (SBS) Vichea Ten

  • Best Performance by an Actress in a Telefeature
  • Winner:

    The Fish Are Safe (ABC) Michele Fawdon

    Nominees:

    The Hour Before My Brother Dies (ABC) Rhonda Wilson
    Two Friends (ABC) Emma Coles
    Two Friends (ABC) Kris McQuade

  • Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Mini-Series
  • Winner:

    Vietnam (Network Ten) Nicole Kidman

    Nominees:

    The Great Bookie Robbery (Nine Network) Catherine Wilkin
    The Harp In The South (Network Ten) Anne Phelan
    Sword Of Honour (Seven Network) Tracy Mann

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