The Setting Sun Film Festival (SSFF) was founded in 2013 as a community festival to provide the West with its own film festival that promoted its large community of filmmakers, its people and stories. It was the only festival designed specifically for the Western suburbs. It has now grown in popularity to become the premier international film festival in Melbourne’s West and one of the largest short film festivals in Melbourne.
The Setting Sun Film Festival is part of the City of Maribyrnong’s prestigious Festival City calendar. It screens every year at Yarraville’s Sun Theatre, one of Time Out’s Top 50 cinemas in the world.
The SSFF was a ground-breaking festival from its inception. While many of Melbourne’s festivals now promote onscreen cultural diversity, the SSFF was designed from the beginning with innovative programs and awards designed to showcase the reality of
the West’s vibrantly diverse society. The SSFF was the first festival to have a Cultural Diversity Award. Remarkably, it was the first festival in Australia, to have a female filmmakers’ program.
As the reputation of the festival has grown, it has attracted quality award winning films from around world as well the best filmmakers in Australia. The competition element of the festival honours and recognises the craft of filmmaking.
In 2020 and 2021, the SSFF successfully pivoted to a hybrid festival to adjust to a Covid reality. While nothing beats going to the cinema to watch films, the online festival has increased the SSFF’s audience. People from over 41 countries participated in watching the festival. We screened films from the Middle East, USA, UK, Spain, China, South Africa, South America and Canada.
Hybrid festivals have given film festivals the opportunity to survive as an events industry during Covid and beyond. Filmmakers can still make films and find a viewing audience.
We have over $10,000 in cash and prizes to give away.
- Best Short Film Overall
- Best Film Feature Length (narrative or documentary)
- Best Short Film West
- Best Short Film Cultural Diversity
- People’s Choice
- The Rouge Program (female only)
- Best Documentary
- Best Comedy
- Best Animation
- Best International
- Best Acting Performance Overall
- Best Emerging Filmmaker (Under 25 or Tertiary student)
- Best Indigenous Achievement in Filmmaking
- Best Short Film Secondary
The festival was founded and created by Anna Bourozikas from Poppy Kat Media.