Tropfest today announced it has received a lifeline from CGU Insurance. There was national outcry when the iconic event was cancelled earlier this year, but CGU’s support will now enable the Festival to be staged on Sunday 14 February 2016 in Centennial Parklands, Sydney.
More than 1.6 million people have attended a Tropfest event since it was established in 1993 by Founder and Festival Director, John Polson. The event today attracts a live national audience of around 150,000 and draws in hundreds of thousands more via the live TV broadcast.
Polson said the outpouring of support received in recent weeks has been overwhelming. “It’s incredibly encouraging to see that the Australian public and corporate community really want to see Tropfest return.”
“As a free, outdoor event, Tropfest makes short film accessible to all. There's nothing else quite like it and I think that's what people love,” he continued. “Thanks to the support given by CGU Insurance, we’re now able to restore Tropfest for the filmmakers whose work was put on hold, for our fans and of course for the suppliers and partners who all give so much to make the world’s largest short film festival a reality. It’s the comeback story of the decade.”
Ben Bessell, Commercial Insurance Chief Executive for IAG, which owns the CGU business, said he was delighted to support this iconic event.
“Tropfest is a great festival, providing unique platforms for talented filmmakers through its events and initiatives, and we are excited to be able to help them get back on their feet,” Mr Bessell said.
“Supporting this fantastic cultural event is about creating a renewed opportunity for Tropfest and all those small businesses associated with the event to continue to thrive and get some business done.”
“It’s also about supporting the wider community who are avid fans of film and entertainment and give them an opportunity to come along and enjoy a free cultural event.”
Tropfest has been an important event on Australia’s national calendar for 23 years and has spread globally to New Zealand, South East Asia, New York, the Middle East and elsewhere.
The Tropfest finalist films will premiere live in Sydney’s Centennial Parklands on Valentine’s Day, Sunday February 14, and will also be broadcast free-to-air from 9pm on SBS 2.
Polson also confirmed that Trop Jr, the Festival’s competition for filmmakers aged 15 and under, will also go ahead on Sunday February 14, screening ahead of the sixteen Tropfest finalist films.
In addition to new partner CGU Insurance, Tropfest is supported by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency Destination NSW and Screen NSW; as well as returning major partners Qantas, Nikon, Centennial Parklands, SBS 2, Screen Australia and Nova 96.9.