Coming of age comedy drama Girl Asleep won the top prize at the CinefestOZ festival in West Australia. The $100,000 award is the richest prize on the Australian festival circuit.
The award was announced in WA's Busselton by a jury headed by Gillian Armstrong. The decision was unanimous. Other contenders included Jasper Jones, The Life and Death of Otto Bloom and Spin Out.
The film is an adaptation of 2014 stage play about a girl who delves into fairytale and fantasy during her 15th birthday party, and was written by Mathew Whittet. With Bethany Whitmore and Harrison Feldman as the leads, it was directed by Rosemary Myers. It had its world premiere in October 2015 at the Adelaide Film Festival and screened in Berlin in the K-Plus youth programming strand. It has since been picked up for U.S. release by Oscilloscope, and will release in Australian cinemas on September 7 through Umbrella Films.
Previous CinefestOZ winners include Paper Planes and last year's Putuparri and the Rainmakers. Armstrong was also named as CinefestOZ's 2016 Screen Legend.
Read 'Girl Asleep' review