Official Competition

The Sydney Film Prize is the pinnacle of the competitive awards at Sydney Film Festival each year, presented in recognition of the most courageous, audacious and cutting-edge new cinema.

The Official Competition had its tenth anniversary in 2017, marking a decade of celebrating that rare but thrilling kind of film that truly moves the art form forward. Innovative, provocative and controversial, these films broaden our understanding of the world and say important things in original ways.

The 2017 Official Competition winner was awarded to On Body and Soul. Ildikó Enyedi's film came out triumphant over the other 11 films in the 10th anniversary Official Competition, and director and screenwriter Ildikó Enyedi was on hand at the Closing Night Gala to accept the Sydney Film Prize and $60,000 in cash. 

The previous winners of the Sydney Film Prize are: Aquarius (2016); Arabian Nights (2015); Two Days, One Night (2014); Only God Forgives (2013); Alps (2012); A Separation (2011); Heartbeats (2010); Bronson (2009); and Hunger (2008). To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Sydney Film Festival's Official Competition, take a look back at the past winners, jury members and competition entrants.

2017 Official Competition Jury


Margaret Pomeranz

Rosemary Blight

Ann Marie Fleming

Margaret Pomeranz
Jury President  
Presenter/Film Critic/Journalist

Rosemary Blight 
Producer (Cleverman)


Ann Marie Fleming
Director (Window Horses)

Kini S. Kim

Deepak Rauniyar


   Kini S. Kim
Film Executive/Lecturer
South Korea  


Deepak Rauniyar
Director (White Sun) 



The Beguiled

Fresh from its Cannes Competition berth, Sofia Coppola's new film is a seductive thriller set in the Civil War era starring Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst and Elle Fanning.


Winner of the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize at the Berlinale, this is a surprising, music-infused drama about a proud and spirited woman working as a singer in Kinshasa.

Happy End

Master Austrian director Michael Haneke has won the Cannes Palme d'Or with his last two films, The White Ribbon (2009) and Amour (SFF 2012).

I Am Not Your Negro

Narrated by Samuel L Jackson, this mesmerising Oscar-nominated film channels the impassioned words of writer James Baldwin, one of the most incisive commentators on race in America.

My Happy Family

52-year-old Manana's family is shocked when she announces that she's moving out to live in her own place. A dramatic, funny film from the directors of In Bloom (SFF 2013).

On Body and Soul

Winner of the Berlinale Golden Bear, On Body and Soul is about the unconventional romance between two co-workers who discover that each night they have exactly the same dreams.

The Other Side of Hope

Aki Kaurismäki's new film is a funny and melancholic tale of the friendship between a Syrian refugee and a Helsinki restaurant-owner. Berlinale Silver Bear winner for Best Director.

Pop Aye

A downtrodden architect and his long-lost elephant take a road trip across Thailand to find their childhood home in this offbeat and very funny Sundance screenwriting award-winner.


Rooney Mara and Ben Mendelsohn star in this emotionally powerful debut by Australian and international theatre director Benedict Andrews.

The Untamed

A creature of another world unleashes people's base sexual impulses in this imaginative meld of social realism and erotic sci-fi which won the Venice Silver Lion for Best Director.

We Don't Need a Map

Filmmaker Warwick Thornton investigates our relationship to the Southern Cross, in this fun and thought provoking ride through Australia's cultural and political landscape.

Wolf and Sheep

This debut feature by a groundbreaking Afghan woman director, a Cannes Director's Fortnight-winner, is an extraordinarily daring and rare view of Afghan rural life and mythology.