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Top Screen 2019 winners announced

Three boys sitting around a big table

Top Screen has again been a resounding success, with more than 4000 people sampling short films from 2018 VCE Media students. The 2019 People’s Choice Award and Jury Prize have been awarded to two outstanding comedies – Paper Caper (pictured) by Finn Hartnett of Scotch College and Leased by Madelaine Jamieson of Footscray City College, respectively.

The Top Screen People’s Choice Award is awarded to the film that garners the highest number of audience votes across the 2019 season. Paper Caper is a stylised heist comedy featuring a trio of students plotting to steal school exam papers.

‘It was pure delight to see Paper Caper sharing the big screen with some truly awesome films for Top Screen,’ says Finn.

‘Nothing has delighted me more than seeing the film being enjoyed by so many people in the screenings.’

The Top Screen Jury Prize recognises outstanding filmmaking talent based on a range of criteria, including originality and conceptual development. This year’s winner, Leased, uses an accomplished animation style to skewer cultural stereotypes in hilarious fashion. The black comedy was selected by a panel that included award-winning filmmaker Claudia Sangiorgi Dalimore, ACMI film educator and writer Garry Westmore, and Editor of Metro magazine Adolfo Aranjuez.

Madelaine says she is grateful that her work could reach a wider audience in the festival. ‘Being a part of Top Screen was a great experience and a rewarding opportunity.’

Finn and Madelaine have each received a certificate from the VCAA and a prize pack that includes subscriptions to Metro and Screen Education magazines, a $150 selection of goodies from Third Drawer Down and a one-year ACMI membership.

Top Screen is part of the annual VCE Season of Excellence 2019, which also includes Top Arts at the NGV, Top Designs at Melbourne Museum and the Top Acts concert at the Melbourne Recital Centre.