AACTA Award for Best Original Screenplay

The AACTA Award for Best Original Screenplay is an award presented by the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA), for an Australian screenplay "written directly and originally for the screen".[1] Prior to the establishment of the Academy in 2011, the award was presented by the Australian Film Institute (AFI) at the annual Australian Film Institute Awards (more commonly known as the AFI Awards).[2] It was first handed out in 1978 when the award for Best Screenplay (which was first presented at the 1974-75 awards) was split into two categories: Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay. The award has since been presented intermittently from 1978-1979, 1983-1987, 1989, 1993-2006, and then from 2008-present.[2]

Best Original Screenplay
Presented byAustralian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA)
First awarded1978
Currently held byAndrew Knight and Robert Schenkkan, Hacksaw Ridge (2016)

Winners and nominees

In the following table, the years listed correspond to the year of film release; the ceremonies are usually held the same year. The films and screenwriters in bold and in yellow background have won are the winners. Those that are neither highlighted nor in bold are the nominees. When sorted chronologically, the table always lists the winning screenplay first and then the other nominees.[3][4]

Year Film Subject
1978 Newsfront Bob Ellis, Phillip Noyce
The Last Wave Tony Morphett, Petru Popescu, Peter Weir
Mouth to Mouth John Duigan
Patrick Everett De Roche
1979 In Search of Anna Esben Storm
Kostas Linda Aronson
Mad Max James McCausland, George Miller
Palm Beach Albie Thoms
1983 Buddies John Dingwall
The Clinic Greg Millin
Man of Flowers Paul Cox, Bob Ellis
Phar Lap David Williamson
1984 My First Wife Paul Cox, Bob Ellis
Fast Talking Ken Cameron
Silver City Thomas Keneally, Sophia Turkiewicz
Street Hero Jan Sardi
1985 Fran Glenda Hambly
The Boy Who Had Everything Stephen Wallace
A Street to Die Bill Bennett
Unfinished Business Bob Ellis
1986 Malcolm David Parker
The More Things Change... Michael Brindley, Moya Wood
Short Changed Bob Merritt
Young Einstein David Roach, Yahoo Serious
1987 The Year My Voice Broke John Duigan
Belinda Pamela Gibbons
Ground Zero Mac Gudgeon, Jan Sardi
High Tide Laura Jones
1989 Sweetie Jane Campion, Gerard Lee
Georgia Mac Gudgeon
Ghosts… of the Civil Dead Gene Conkie, Evan English and John Hillcoat
Island Paul Cox
1993 The Piano Jane Campion
The Nostradamus Kid Bob Ellis
On My Own Gill Dennis, John Frizzell, Antonio Tibaldi
This Won't Hurt a Bit Chris Kennedy
1994 Bad Boy Bubby Rolf de Heer
The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert Stephan Elliott
Muriel's Wedding P. J. Hogan
The Roly Poly Man Kym Goldsworthy
1995 Angel Baby Michael Rymer
All Men Are Liars Gerard Lee
Mushrooms Alan Madden
Vacant Possession Margot Nash
1996 Shine Jan Sardi
Children of the Revolution Peter Duncan
Floating Life Eddie L. C. Fong and Clara Law
Love and Other Catastrophes Helen Bandis, Yael Bergman, Emma-Kate Croghan
1997 The Castle Santo Cilauro, Tom Gleisner, Jane Kennedy and Rob Sitch
Doing Time for Patsy Cline Chris Kennedy
Kiss or Kill Bill Bennett
Road to Nhill Alison Tilson
1998 The Interview Gordon Davie, Craig Monahan
Amy David Parker
Dance Me to My Song Rolf de Heer, Heather Rose, Frederick Stahl
Dead Letter Office Deb Cox
1999 Two Hands Gregor Jordan
Siam Sunset Max Dann and Andrew Knight
Soft Fruit Christina Andreef
Strange Fits of Passion Elise McCredie
2000 Russian Doll Stavros Kazantzidis, Allanah Zitserman
Better Than Sex Jonathan Teplitzky
Me Myself I Pip Karmel
My Mother Frank Mark Lamprell
2001 The Bank Robert Connolly
La Spagnola Anna Maria Monticelli
Mullet David Caesar
Yolngu Boy Chris Anastassiades
2002 Walking on Water Roger Monk
Beneath Clouds Ivan Sen
The Man Who Sued God John Clarke, Don Watson
The Tracker Rolf de Heer
2003 Japanese Story Alison Tilson
Crackerjack Mick & Richard Molloy
Gettin' Square Chris Nyst
Travelling Night Kathryn Millard
2004 Somersault Cate Shortland
The Finished People Khoa Do, Rodney Anderson, Joe Le, Jason McGoldrick
Love's Brother Jan Sardi
Tom White Daniel Keene
2005 Look Both Ways Sarah Watt
Little Fish Jacquelin Perske
The Proposition Nick Cave
Wolf Creek Greg McLean
2006 Ten Canoes Rolf de Heer
2:37 Murali K. Thalluri
Kenny Shane & Clayton Jacobson
Suburban Mayhem Alice Bell
2008 The Black Balloon Elissa Down, Jimmy Jack
Hey, Hey, It's Esther Blueburger Cathy Randall
The Jammed Dee McLachlan
The Square Matthew Dabner, Joel Edgerton
2009 Samson and Delilah Warwick Thornton
Cedar Boys Serhat Caradee
Mary and Max Adam Elliot
My Year Without Sex Sarah Watt
2010 Animal Kingdom David Michôd
Beneath Hill 60 David Roach
Bright Star Jane Campion
Daybreakers The Spierig Brothers
AACTA Awards
Griff the Invisible Leon Ford
The Loved Ones Sean Byrne
Mad Bastards Brendan Fletcher
Red Hill Patrick Hughes
Wish You Were Here Kieran Darcy-Smith, Felicity Price
Burning Man Jonathan Teplitzky
Mental P. J. Hogan
Not Suitable for Children Michael Lucas
The Rocket Kim Mordaunt
100 Bloody Acres Cameron & Colin Cairnes
Drift Morgan O'Neill
Mystery Road Ivan Sen
The Babadook Jennifer Kent
52 Tuesdays Matthew Cormack, Sophie Hyde
Charlie's Country David Gulpilil, Rolf de Heer
The Water Diviner Andrew Anastasios, Andrew Knight
Paper Planes Robert Connolly, Steve Worland
Cut Snake Blake Ayshford
Kill Me Three Times James McFarland
Mad Max: Fury Road Nico Lathouris, Brendan McCarthy, George Miller
Hacksaw Ridge Andrew Knight, Robert Schenkkan
Down Under Abe Forsythe
Goldstone Ivan Sen
Pawno Damian Hill
Ali's Wedding Andrew Knight, Osamah Sami
The Butterfly Tree Priscilla Cameron
The Death and Life of Otto Bloom Cris Jones
Hounds of Love Ben Young
Sweet Country Steven McGregor, David Tranter
1% Matt Nable
Brothers' Nest Jaime Browne
Upgrade Leigh Whannell

See also


  1. "Rule 5.5 –Special Rules for Screenplays". 2011 AFI Awards Rule Book. Australian Film Institute (AFI). Archived from the original on 8 August 2011. Retrieved 7 January 2012.
  2. "AFI Feature Film Award Winners: 1958-2010" (PDF). Australian Film Institute (AFI). 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 March 2012. Retrieved 4 January 2012.
  3. Winners and nominees by year:
  4. Additional nominees for 2002 and 2006: French, Lisa; Poole, Mark (2009). Shining a Light: 50 Years of the Australian Film Institute. Australian Teachers of Media (ATOM). p. 175. ISBN 1-876467-20-7.
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