The Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts unveiled its nominees for Oz’s equivalent to the Oscar and the Emmy today with sci-fi thriller Predestination leading the pack of feature films at nine mentions. That group also includes Russell Crowe’s directorial debut, The Water Diviner, which scored eight nominations including Best Film and Best Actor. Following with seven nods is David Michôd’s The Rover which will vie in the directing category as well as in Best Actor for Guy Pearce and Best Supporting Actor for Robert Pattinson.
Predestination is directed by brothers Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig and stars Ethan Hawke as a time-traveling “Temporal Agent” on his final assignment. It was released this summer in Oz where it made about $540K. The Water Diviner, which just premiered in Sydney, is an epic-sized World War I drama that sees Crowe as an Australian farmer who travels to Turkey four years after the battle of Gallipoli in search of his sons who have been reported missing in action. Warner Bros is planning an April 24 limited release in the U.S. As for The Rover, it debuted in a Midnight slot in Cannes and stars Pearce and Pattinson as a pair of angry men on a mission to track down a gang of guys who seriously wronged them. A24 released it this summer. Horror pic The Babadook; Rolf de Heer’s Foreign Language Oscar entry, Charlie’s Country; Colin Firth/Nicole Kidman-starrer The Railway Man; and John Curran’s Tracks also received multiple mentions.
On the TV side, the Australian Broadcasting Company’s The Code is in the lead with 10 mentions. That six-part thriller has been sold to DirecTV in the U.S. and is produced by Playmaker Media which was just acquired by Sony Pictures Television. Also up for TV awards are The Moodys, Rake and the INXS drama Never Tear Us Apart. A full list of the film and TV nominations can be found here.
The AACTA prize ceremony will be held on January 29. In the meantime, the academy will also hold its International Awards in LA in January to honor Hollywood.