AACTA Winners & Nominees

AFI Past winners

The success of Somersault at the 2004 awards was quite unprecedented. It received 15 nominations in the 13 categories for which it was eligible and won all 13 awards, surpassing the 11 won by The Piano. In the remaining feature film category (Best Adapted Screenplay), no prize was awarded and so Somersault won every feature film award that year. Another finalist for Best Film in 2004 was Tom White with 12 nominations. The overwhelming success of Somersault meant that Tom White surpassed the unenviable record set by Stir in 1980 of no awards from 11 nominations. The remaining finalists for the Best Film award were Love's Brother with 6 nominations and The Old Man Who Read Love Stories with 4.

There were three other multiple nominees and they were One Perfect Day (8), The Finished People (2) and Thunderstruck (2).

Somersault’s clean sweep of the technical categories comprised Best Costume Design and Best Production Design, Best Original Music, Best Sound, Best Editing and Best Cinematography. Emily Seresin’s award for Best Costume Design followed nominations for Two Hands, Praise and The Night We Called It A Day. Melinda Doring’s award for Best Production Design came from her first nomination, as did the awards to Decoder Ring for Best Original Music, Mark Blackwell for Best Sound, Scott Gray for Best Editing and Robert Humphreys for Best Cinematography.

Lynette Curran’s award as Best Supporting Actress followed nominations as Best Actress for Bliss and The Boys. Best Supporting Actor Erik Thomson was a first time nominee. Best Actress Abbie Cornish had won a Young Actor award for an episode of Wildside in 1999. She was also nominated in 2004 for her television work in Marking Time. Best Actor winner Sam Worthington had been previously nominated for Bootmen.

Cate Shortland won the awards for Best Original Screenplay and for Best Direction. She had been nominated in 2000 for Flowergirl in the Best Short Fiction Film category. The award for Best Film was received by Anthony Anderson who, like Shortland, was making his feature film debut.

In the non-feature category, The President Versus David Hicks was named Best Documentary. This gave Curtis Levy two awards in this category. He was also nominated for Best Direction in a Documentary, but this award went to Anna Broinowski for Helen's War: Portrait Of A Dissident. This was her first nomination.                          .

Best Short Animation went to Sejong Park for Birthday Boy. Park was also nominated for the Best Screenplay in a Short Film award. In 2005, Birthday Boy would be a nominee at the American Academy Awards.

In the television category, Stingers was named Best Television Drama Series. This was the fourth win for this duo of veteran producers. Their earlier awards were for Halifax f.p, Good Guys Bad Guys and Something In The Air. Best Light Entertainment Series went to Andrew Denton for Enough Rope With Andrew Denton, repeating the success of the programme in 2003.

Marking Time, like Somersault in the feature category, set new records. The series received ten nominations across seven categories and was successful in every category. Best Supporting Actress in Television Katie Wall, Best Supporting Actor in Television Matthew le Nevez, Best Lead Actress in Television Bojana Novakovic and Best Lead Actor in Television Abe Forsythe were all first time nominees.

Best Screenplay in Television winner John Doyle had previously been nominated for Changi. Director Cherie Nowlan had not been nominated previously. Producer John Edwards had shared an award for the mini-series On The Beach, as well as having been nominated 14 times since 1989.

The recipient of the Byron Kennedy Award was John Clarke for “sustained excellence….as poet, playwright, actor, author, director and producer.”

The Raymond Longford Award was presented to Producer Pat Lovell, whose five feature films boasted a Best Film award (Gallipoli) and nominations for Break Of Day, Monkey Grip and Picnic At Hanging Rock.

2004 Winners & Nominees





  • Film Australia AFI Award for Best Documentary
  • Winner:

    The President Versus David Hicks Curtis Levy


    Helen’s War: Portrait Of A Dissident Sonja Armstrong, Anne Pick
    Lonely Boy Richard Denise Haslem, Rosemary Hesp
    The Men Who Would Conquer China Nick Torrens

  • AFI Award for Best Short Animation
  • Winner:

    Birthday Boy Sejong Park (Director)


    Footnote Pia Borg (Director)
    It’s Like That Southern Ladies Animation Group (S.L.A.G.) (Director)
    Lucky For Some Robert Stephenson (Director)

  • AFI Award for Best Short Fiction Film
  • Winner:

    Lennie Cahill Shoots Through Paul Oliver (Director)


    Floodhouse Miro Bilbrough (Director)
    So Close To Home Jessica Hobbs (Director)
    The Scree Paul McDermott (Director)

  • AFI Award for Best Direction in a Documentary
  • Winner:

    Helen’s War: Portrait Of A Dissident Anna Broinowski


    Fahimeh’s Story Faramarz K. Rahber
    The Man Who Stole My Mother’s Face Cathy Henkel
    The President Versus David Hicks Bentley Dean, Curtis Levy

  • AFI Award for Best Screenplay in a Short Film
  • Winner:

    Queen Of Hearts Danielle Maclean


    Birthday Boy Sejong Park
    Floodhouse Miro Bilbrough
    So Close To Home Madeleine Blackwell

  • AFI Award for Best Cinematography in a Non-Feature Film
  • Winner:

    Inside Australia Ian Batt


    Floodhouse Kim Batterham
    My Sister Tim Hudson
    Platypus - World’s Strangest Animal David Parer ACS

  • AFI Award for Best Editing in a Non-Feature Film
  • Winner:

    The Men Who Would Conquer China Jane St Vincent-Welch


    Palermo - 'History' Standing Still Janet Merewether
    So Close To Home Denise Haratzis
    Truckies Don’t Eat Quiche David Cole

  • AFI Award for Best Sound in a Non-Feature Film
  • Winner:

    Land Of The Morning Star David Bridie, John Patterson, Tony Vaccher


    Big Men; Bigger Dreams - Australian Wrestlers Andrew Duffield, Liam Egan, Phil Judd MPSE
    Birthday Boy James Lee, Chris McKeith, Megan Wedge
    Good Luck Jeffrey Brown Andrew Plain, Liam Price