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SAFC celebrates Marungka Tjalatjunu (Dipped in Black) at inaugural Screen Circle members event

23 May 2024
Marungka Tjalatjunu (Dipped in Black) co-writer/co-director Derik Lynch with SAFC CEO Kate Croser, photo by Naomi Jellicoe.

The South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) was proud to celebrate South Australian First Nations storytelling with a screening of award-winning film Marungka Tjalatjunu (Dipped in Black) this week marking the inaugural gathering of members of the SAFC Screen Circle.

Held at the Piccadilly in North Adelaide, the special event saw Screen Circle members come together with the film’s co-director and co-writer, Yankunytjatjara South Australian artist and performer Derik Lynch, members of the First Nations screen sector and other invited guests for a screening of the film followed by a Q&A with Lynch and composer Jed Silver, hosted by South Australian playwright Verity Laughton.

Marungka Tjalatjunu (Dipped in Black) is a multi-award winning short film by Lynch, co-directed, co-written and produced by Matthew Thorne, of Other Pictures and, through South Australia’s Switch Productions, produced by Patrick Graham and Executive Produced by Duncan Graham, with support from the SAFC, Adelaide Film Festival Investment Fund (AFFIF) and Panavision. The film follows Derik, an initiated Anangu and queer-identifying man, on a road trip from the oppression of white city life in Adelaide back to country – Aputula in the Northern Territory – to perform on sacred Inma ground, while memories from his youth growing up on country return.

The film had its international premiere at Berlinale 2023, where it won both the Silver Bear Jury Prize and the Teddy Award for best LGBTQI short film – the first film in history to win both awards. Since then it has been officially selected for more than 40 international film festivals and accumulated more than a dozen awards (and counting), including the Documentary Australia Award at the 2023 Sydney Film Festival, Best Short Documentary at both 2023 MIFF and 2024 AIDC, the 2023 Ruby Award for Outstanding Regional Event or Project and the 2023 Screen Diversity and Inclusion Network (SDIN) Award.

A selection of the many awards received by Marungka Tjalatjunu (Dipped in Black). Photo: Naomi Jellicoe

Launched last year, the SAFC’s Screen Circle is a new group of influential screen sector advocates and champions who have pledged to help the SAFC in its mission to boost and grow South Australia’s screen industry.

Distinguished guests at this inaugural members’ event included the Hon Kyam Maher MLC Attorney General and Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, the Hon Tammy Franks MLC, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young and members of South Australia’s creative sectors including former SAFC Board Chair Peter Hanlon and Kirsty Stark, Co-Chairs of The Mercury; SAFC Board Chair Mike Rann and Board Members Lauren Hillman, Angela Heesom, Shouwn Oosting and Clara Reeves; SAFC CEO Kate Croser, SAFC First Nations Screen Strategy Executive Pauline Clague and First Nations Industry Development Executive Tyme Childs.

Q&A with Derik Lynch, Verity Laughton and Jed Silver. Photo: Naomi Jellicoe

“As an organisation with storytelling at its heart, the SAFC is committed to highlighting and supporting First Nations South Australian voices, cultures and stories on screens both here and abroad,” SAFC Chair Mike Rann said in his welcome address.

“Derik Lynch is one of those very exciting voices, and Dipped in Black is one of the very exciting outcomes of sector support from the SAFC, and our partners like the Adelaide Film Festival. We at the SAFC are so proud to champion talented South Australian First Nations screen creatives, to strengthen the capacity, creativity and connectedness of the South Australian First Nations screen sector, and to continue to support all First Nations practitioners to grow, develop and take their stories to even greater audiences via screens of all sorts.”

See photos from the evening below, and find out more about Marungka Tjalatjunu (Dipped in Black) in the SAFC’s SA Made Showcase.

Photos by Naomi Jellicoe.

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