Sydney's Inner West Film Fest Is Back for Its Second Year in 2024 with a Longer Run and Star-Studded Lineup

Catch new movies starring Jeremy Allen White, Ayo Edebiri and Jacob Elordi — and a free outdoor session of 'Napoleon Dynamite'.
Sarah Ward
Published on April 12, 2024

The Bear's third season won't arrive till winter 2024 Down Under, but you can get your Jeremy Allen White and Ayo Edebiri fix in Sydney before then. Dishing up the goods: the returning Inner West Film Fest. This cinema showcase that's also a love letter to its setting debuted in 2023 as a three-day event. Now it's back for 2024 for 11 days, from Thursday, April 11–Sunday, April 21 — and with plenty of highlights on its lineup.

White (The Iron Claw) pops up in Fremont, which is about an Afghan woman (debutant Anaita Wali Zada) who moves to the titular spot, and marks the latest feature by Iranian British filmmaker Babak Jalali (Land). For not only Edebiri (Bottoms) but Australia's own Jacob Elordi (Priscilla), you'll want to make a date with The Sweet East. Hailing from cinematographer Sean Price Williams (Good Time) in his directorial debut, it focuses on a high schooler (Talia Ryder, Dumb Money) on a class trip from South Carolina to Washington, DC.

The fest's official opening night is on Friday, April 12, taking place at Steel Park Marrickville — one of three screening venues, alongside Palace Norton Street and Dendy Cinemas Newtown. Twenty years since it initially premiered, complete with awkward teen antics, ligers, making shapes to Qwon's Dance Grooves and voting for Pedro, Napoleon Dynamite is doing the honours to launch Inner West Film Fest. Not only can you catch it under the stars, but you can head along for free.

Also bringing film fun to one specific part of the city, and to autumn — because winter is Sydney Film Festival's time to shine — is a 24-title bill that includes Luc Besson's (Anna) DogMan, as starring Caleb Landry Jones (Nitram); The Caine Mutiny Court Martial, the final effort by iconic director William Friedkin (The French Connection, The Exorcist, Sorcerer); I Used to Be Funny, with Rachel Sennott (another Bottoms alum) playing a wannabe stand-up comedian; and I Like Movies, a feature that, yes, is about being obsessed with cinema.

Among the flicks with homegrown links, Housekeeping for Beginners is the third film from Australian director Goran Stolevski's (You Won't Be Alone, Of an Age); the Parramatta-set Sahela is executive produced by Dev Patel (Monkey Man); and 2000's Angst, about a video store worker in Kings Cross, gets some retro love. Boxing drama Heart of the Man is the first movie from Indigenous writer, director, actor and producer David Cook, while documentary Fight to Live is about Australian mixed martial artist Bec Rawlings.

Around the fest's screenings — which also spans short films as well — movie trivia, a gin-mixing workshop, premieres of new music videos and a photo exhibition are on the program. So is a secret screening, complete with a feature that'll be seen by an audience for the first time ever, if you like your film fests with a dash of mystery.

Inner West Film Fest 2024 runs from Thursday, April 11–Sunday, April 21 around Sydney's Inner West — head to the festival's website for further details.

Published on April 12, 2024 by Sarah Ward
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