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Movie Helmed By Kiwi Director James Morcan Garners International Film Festival Award

Anno 2020, a feature film helmed by New Zealand director James Morcan, won the Titan International Film Festival’s ‘Best Experimental Film’ award in Sydney last week.

The ambitious mystery-drama feature film was produced by Australian production company MoneyShot Productions on a budget of less than NZ$10,000.00 (US$6,000.00). It was shot using cutting-edge, experimental filming techniques and it involved calling in a lot of favours from cast and crew.

Morcan, for whom Anno 2020 represents his directorial debut, accepted the Titan award on behalf of Sydney producer Gil Ben-Moshe and his production team. In his acceptance speech, he paid tribute to all who worked on and contributed to the film.

“Completing Anno 2020 was a triumph, especially when you consider our low budget and the fact that the film was shot during the strict Covid-19 lockdowns in 17 cities on four different continents,” he said.

Morcan describes the film as a multicultural kaleidoscope of interconnected characters seeking redemption, forgiveness and peace during the wild year that was 2020.

“It’s a vignette film, a rare type of movie where there are various plots instead of just one. These are told separately, but they all intersect at the end to ultimately become part of one larger story.”

Requiring the employment of camera crews and cast around the world, Anno 2020 boasts an award-winning ensemble of international actors. The cast includes leading Australians Greg Poppleton (Backtrack, The Chronicles of Narnia) and Erin Connor (Occupation: Rainfall, Dino King 3D), as well as US veterans Kevin Scott Allen (Star Trek, Alias, Prison Break) and Sheila Ball (Assault on VA-33).

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Morcan, who is also an actor, producer, novelist, and screenwriter, adapted the screenplay from his published novel of the same name and had major input into the lengthy editing of the film alongside Editor/DOP Simon Carter. In addition to directing it, he also plays a supporting role in the film.

The Titan festival award followed the announcement in December that Anno 2020 had been awarded Quarter-Finalist status in the Best Film category at the International British Film Festival 2023. The movie also received an official selection for the Symbiotic Film Festival in Ukraine earlier this month.

The official cinematic launch of Anno 2020 is booked for Sydney's Randwick Ritz cinema on March 24. It will be attended by film industry representatives and friends of the production as well as cast and crewmembers.

The producers welcome enquiries from any well-wishers who would like to attend the launch.

Beyond the official launch, interstate cinematic screenings Australia-wide are planned followed by screenings in New Zealand and possibly the US as well. Ben-Moshe said the longer-term target includes online distribution on major streaming platforms.

© Scoop Media

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