Nicole Kidman, Jason Clarke and Filmmaker Phillip Noyce Just Joined SXSW Sydney's Speaker Lineup

Kidman will chat about her production company, which has been behind 'Big Little Lies' and 'The Undoing', while Clarke and Noyce will share Hollywood tales.
Sarah Ward
Published on October 06, 2023

When SXSW arrives in Sydney for the first time ever, it'll give Australia perhaps the biggest tech, innovation, screen, music, games and culture festival that the country has ever seen. It's fitting, then, that the event has just added one of the nation's most famous acting names at home and in America: Nicole Kidman.

2023 marks 40 years since Kidman starred in BMX Bandits, but that's not why she'll be taking to the SXSW Sydney stage as part of its massive speaker lineup. Instead, she'll be chatting with her producing partner Per Saari about her production company Blossom Films. On its resume: the Nickers-starring Big Little Lies, Nine Perfect Strangers, The Undoing and Rabbit Hole, as well as this year's Elizabeth Olsen (Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness)-led Love & Death.

Ryan Pfluger

Among SXSW Sydney's latest additions, Kidman is joined by a few fellow Aussie talents who also know more than a thing or two about working in Hollywood. Indeed, in a separate session called Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, actor Jason Clarke and filmmaker Phillip Noyce will get talking about working in America's showbiz mecca.

Jason Clarke has Oppenheimer, Zero Dark Thirty, First Man, Winning Time: The Rise of The Lakers Dynasty, playing John Connor in Terminator Genisys and more on his resume. Rabbit Proof Fence helmer Noyce's US credits include Salt, The Quiet American, Patriot Games, Clear and Present Danger, The Saint and Revenge (and no, he won't be joining forces with Kidman to dig into Dead Calm). As well as Clarke and Noyce, this session features actor Charmaine Bingwa from The Good Fight, plus Crazy Rich Asians 2 screenwriter Amy Wang.

Warrick Page/HBO

The two new SXSW Sydney sessions hail from the Los Angeles-based Australians in Film, which is about developing screen talent, and add to an already-hefty lineup of speakers. Charlie Brooker is on the bill, diving into Black Mirror of course, while Chance The Rapper will talk about 50 years of hip hop, Coachella CEO Paul Tollett clearly has his own fest to discuss, and Future Today Institute founder and CEO Amy Webb also sits among the big names.

"Over the past 20 years, AiF has created a unique and supportive community of Australian screen talent in Los Angeles, from emerging actors and filmmakers through to our most revered screen icons. We are excited to have this opportunity to bring the spirit and energy of AiF and our Hollywood community to SXSW Sydney, together with our partner Screen Australia," said Australians in Film Chair Emma Cooper.

"From the team at SXSW Sydney, I'd like to extend our heartfelt thanks to Australians in Film and Screen Australia for their ongoing support. We appreciate the time everyone is taking to travel and join us in our first year — our story will be about these visionaries, and about the diverse and compelling voices emerging alongside them," added SXSW Sydney Managing Director Colin Daniels.

Also on the SXSW Sydney lineup: a 700-plus strong bill of talent, covering over 300 sessions. The event will feature more than 300 gigs across 25 venues, too, including an array of music highlights and must-attend parties. Its dedicated gaming strand will feature a tabletop game expo. And, the SXSW Sydney Screen Festival will open with The Royal Hotel, then host the world premiere of Hot Potato: The Story of the Wiggles among a heap of other standout flicks.

The entire event — the festivals within the bigger fest, exhibitions, talks, networking opportunities and streetside activations — will happen within a walkable precinct in the Sydney CBD, Haymarket, Darling Harbour, Ultimo, Chippendale and more, with the SXSW Sydney's footprint operating as a huge hub. Venues include Powerhouse Museum, ICC Sydney, UTS, Central Park Mall, the Goods Line Walk, The Abercrombie and Lansdowne Hotel.

Brittany Hallberg

SXSW Sydney runs from Sunday, October 15–Sunday, October 22 at various Sydney venues, with the SXSW Sydney Screen Festival running from Sunday, October 15–Saturday, October 21 at The ICC's Darling Theatre, Palace Cinemas Central and more venues to be announced. Head to the SXSW Sydney website for further details.

Top image: The Undoing, Niko Tavernise/HBO.


Published on October 06, 2023 by Sarah Ward
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