Among the most long-established in the world, the cinema of Australia and New Zealand has brought a fresh vigor and enthusiasm to the new millennium. Its history is honoured and recognised not only by professionals within the industry but by international critics and audiences - for its creativity, freshness and sense of humour.
Australian cinema was born in 1896 when Australian Walter Barnett met Frenchman Marius Sestier and suggested they form a partnership in Australia. Together they filmed the bays and beaches of Sydney Harbour and the famous Melbourne Cup horse race.
early 1900s, the Salvation Army in Melbourne used the Lumiere process
to make what cinema historian Eric Reade described as "the first
feature length film in history," a 3000-foot biblical epic entitled
Soldiers of the Cross. In the twenty years following the 1906 release
of The Story of the Kelly Gang, Australia became the most important
producer of films in the world, accounting for about 150 feature-length