Meet the dynamic team who make the popular Mud and Saltwater Short Film Fest such a success each year…
KANDY CURRAN – DIRECTOR AND MEDIA MANAGER
With a professional background in photojournalism, media and film, and a deep passion for Roebuck Bay and the wild Kimberley region, it was only a matter of time before the realisation struck.
“It was a hot muggy night and despite the $35 ticket price and absence of any films about the remarkable Kimberley coast, Sun Pictures in Broome was packed to the rafters for the Ocean Film Festival. That’s when I had the epiphany, butterflies in stomach moment, show no fear moment…to start a Film Fest for Kimberley locals to tell filmic stories about their connection to Roebuck Bay, Broome and Kimberley region.
“The idea was seeded with the award winning Roebuck Bay Working Group, and with their full support and funding from State NRM, National Landcare Program, the Mangrove Hotel, Inspiring Australia, Cygnet Bay Pearls and Sobrane Gallery, the Mud and Saltwater Short Film Fest erupted onto the big screen in 2015. There’s been no looking back, with over 700 people jostling for a seat at the Mangrove Hotel screening in 2017 and sell out screenings in 2018, 2019, 2021 at Sun Pictures, the world’s oldest picture theatre in Broome’s Chinatown and in 2023 at the sublimely beautiful outdoor setting of the Mangrove Hotel in Broome.” How good it that?
PIA BOYER – PRODUCER
Throughout studying to become a Journalist, Pia discovered her love for the visual and creative side of storytelling through film; particularly documentary filmmaking. Some of her filmmaking journey includes various roles working in TV for Special Broadcasting Service’s (SBS) and Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), field producing documentary series for Foxtel, as well as other work with production companies across Australia. Over the last few years Pia has worked closely with Feral Film’s Award winning Filmmaker Paul Bell on various productions across Broome and the Kimberley. Pia loves all aspects of filmmaking, she has a passion for producing and production management, but also loves to pick up a camera herself.
Joining the Mud and Saltwater Short Film Fest team in 2019, Pia has loved working with and meeting other Kimberley filmmakers. Being able to help facilitate the showcasing of local stories and ideas in films is nothing but inspiring to her.
PAUL BELL, MARK JONES, NEIL TURNER, NGAIRE PIGRAM, DR MICHAEL MCCALL – JUDGES
Paul Bell Judge – 2015-23
Originally from southwest WA, Paul Bell moved to Broome in 1996. He joined David Batty at Rebel Films, working throughout the Kimberley on documentary and educational projects. In 2001, Paul was accepted into the Australian Film Televion and Radio School in Sydney to study cinematography in documentary, returning to establish his own production company, Feral Films in Broome.
Over the last decade Paul has worked around the world as a freelance director, cameraman and editor for Lonely Planet TV, National Geographic, Discovery, Eurosport, ABC, SBS and CAAMA Television. Highlights include working with the United Nations recording traditional knowledge on climate change with indigenous people and travelling the vast continent of Antarctica.
Awards include Best International Documentary for Case 442 at the International Cherokee Film Festival in Toronto 2007 and Best International Short Documentary for Jarlmadangah: Our Dream at the same festival in 2008. Paul’s short documentary, Walking on Country with Spirits (part of the UNU’s Indigenous Peoples’ Climate Change Video Brief Initiative) received the Special Jury Award at the Green Screen International Film Festival in Vancouver, 2011.
Mark Jones – Judge 2015-23
At the tender age of 23, Mark Jones had an epiphany when filming with legendary Australian filmmaker, Malcolm Douglas (late). He realised that he loved the camera and stories it could tell and he fell in love with the Kimberley, its ruggedness, its people and deep heritage.
Mark went on to make 17 films with the late Malcolm Douglas in those formative years, and that experience led to opportunities in the adventure, wildlife and ethnographic genres. It has allowed him to explore his three great passions, ‘Country’, its original people and the Cultural landscapes produced by the two.
Mark has constantly sought new experiences in the industry to extend his range since those early days with Malcolm. He has shot, Edited, Directed and Written across platforms both individually and in collaboration, with some of the greats of Australian screen including George Negus. It is these relationships and their teachings which Mark holds dear.
This unorthodox ‘apprenticeship’ is now paying dividends for Mark. He has worked with many production houses around the world (NHK – Japan, ABC – US, BBC etc) to showcase the Kimberley, one of the last great Cultural landscapes, to the big and small screen.
Neil Turner Judge 2015-23
Neil Turner has been the manager of Pilbara and Kimberley Aboriginal Media (PAKAM) since 1996. Before that he worked on the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Lands for 11 years as Coordinator of Ernabella Video Television and Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Media.
Neil authored the 1998 National Report on the Broadcasting for Remote Aboriginal Communities Scheme and worked on establishing the Indigenous Community Television and National Indigenous Television services. Neil received the Mr McKenzie Award for his contribution to remote Indigenous television in 2014. Neil is also an incredible animator, running workshops with Indigenous people that have resulted in award winning films such as Whirlpool and Killing of the Bilikin Brothers (PAKAM Animation Crew). Neil serves as Secretary on the Board of ICTV.
Ngaire Pigram – Judge 2023
Ngaire Pigram, whose pronouns are she/they, is a proud queer Wajarri and Yawuru, multi-disciplinary storyteller from Broome, and new addition to the judging panel for entries in the 2023 Mud and Saltwater Short Film Fest. The film fest is the opening event in the 2023 Broome Fringe Festival.
Kandy Curran, Director of the Mud and Saltwater Short Film Fest said, “I had every reason to be starstruck when Ngaire put up her hand to take on a judging role, as an accomplished creative, her performance as Nella in Brendan Fletcher’s 2011 feature film, Mad Bastards, is incredible.”
Their other notable roles in theatre, television, and film are, Jub Clerc’s Sweet As (2022), See-Saw Films’ original vampire series Firebite (2022), Season 2 of Bunya Production’s Mystery Road, directed by Warwick Thornton and Wayne Blair in 2019, which won Best Drama and where Ngaire was nominated for Best Supporting role at the AACTA awards in 2020. They’ve appeared in guest roles for Season 1 of ABC’s The Heights (2019), and proudly as cast/co-creator of Marrugeku’s Cut The Sky (since 2015) along with lead roles in Jimmy Chi’s Bran Nue Dae, for the 30th Anniversary Tour (2020) and Tony Briggs’ The Sapphires, a national and London tour produced by Belvoir Street in 2011.
Her writer/director debut was for their short film Dark Whispers (2014), a Screenwest initiative and produced by Spearpoint Productions. Recently, Ngaire has finally returned to directing, for Brooke Collard’s original, queer Noongar web series, Yokai! (2023), for another Screenwest initiative, ‘Out Now’, produced by Ramu Productions. With over twenty-five years’ experience as a professional in their chosen creative fields, combined, Ngaire is thrilled to be joining the talented judging panel of this year’s Mud and Saltwater Short Film Fest, to support the variety of talented film makers and storytellers from our region!
Dr Michael McCall Judge 2018 – 2021
Dr Michael McCall has worked in a professional capacity as a director, actor, producer, playwright, dramaturg, script editor, arts advocate and educator in stage, screen and arts education in Australia since 2002.
Michael is a graduate of Curtin University, with a Bachelor of Arts (English), and Honours in Performance Studies. He is a graduate of the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) Acting Course. He has completed a Masters in screen directing and writing at the WA Screen Academy, and has a PhD in Performing Arts from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA). Michael is currently Head of Screen Arts at the University of Notre Dame Australia and regularly teaches and directs in the WAAPA Acting and Musical Theatre degrees, along with working for NIDA Open and Bell Shakespeare.
Mangrove Hotel - Carnarvon Street
Broome Western Australia 6725
0400 003 864 Kandy Curran
0427 502 822 Pia Boyer