Ivan Sen is an Australian indigenous filmmaker.
He studied filmmaking at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School, where he produced his first short films, working with the crew he continues to work with today.
Throughout the late 1990s Sen worked on numerous short films, before making his feature film debut with Beneath Clouds in 2002.
Sen's first feature-length work, Beneath Clouds, filmed on a $2.5 million budget won him global acclaim, screening at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival and winning the Premiere First Movie Award at the 2002 Berlin Film Festival and the 2002 Best Director Award at the Australian Film Institute Awards. For the screenplay, he drew on his own background as the child of an Aboriginal mother and an absent white father. The film follows two teenagers, Lena (Dannielle Hall) and Vaughn (Damian Pitt) who are hitchhiking their way from a rural New South Wales town to Sydney, each for different reasons. The film explores many of the racial difficulties in their society as well as the way the choices each makes can affect how they turn out.
In 2005, Sen's documentary Yellow Fella, screened in Official Selection at the Cannes International Film Festival.
In 2009, the Message Sticks Indigenous Film Festival held at the Sydney Opera House saw the world premiere of Sen's Fire Talker, a documentary biopic about political activist, Aboriginal footballer, and statesman Charlie Perkins.
Sen's second feature-length film, Dreamland, screened at the 2010 Busan International Film Festival and Melbourne International Film Festival.
In 2011, his third feature Toomelah, screened in Official Selection at the Cannes International Film Festival.
Sen's most recent feature-length film Mystery Road premiered at the Sydney Film Festival in June 2013 and features many well known Australian actors such as Aaron Pedersen, Hugo Weaving, Jack Thompson, Ryan Kwanten and Tasma Walton. The film was shown at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival.
Filming of Goldstone, which is the sequel to Mystery Road, was set to start filming in May 2015, and will feature actors Aaron Pedersen, Jacki Weaver, Alex Russell, David Gulpilil, David Wenham and Tom E. Lewis.
- Tears (1998) : Two teenagers walk from the certainty of life on the "mish" to a bus stop and enter uncertain dreams of a life somewhere else. At the bus stop both of them have to make a decision.
- Who Is Evelyn Orcher? (documentary)
- The Dreamers (documentary)
- Beneath Clouds (feature-length drama)
- Dust (short drama)
- Wind (short drama)
- Vanish (documentary)
- Journey (short drama)
- Warm Strangers (short drama)
- Shifting Shelter (documentary)
- A Sister's Love (documentary, 2006) : The documentary traces the disappearance of Lois Roberts, the family’s uncertainty on her whereabouts, the finding of her body and details about the inquiry and police action.
- Fire Talker (documentary, 2006): A film about Aboriginal activist and statesman Charlie Perkins.
- Dreamland (2010 feature film)
- Toomelah (2011 feature film)
- Mystery Road (feature film-Thriller, 2013)
- Goldstone (feature film, 2016)
|1998||Cork International Film Festival||Best International Short Film||Tears||Won|
|1999||Australian Film Institute||Best Short Fiction Film||Wind||Nominated|
|2000||Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival||International Competition||Won|
|2002||Australian Film Institute||Best Direction||Beneath Clouds||Won|
|Berlin International Film Festival||First Movie Award||Won|
|Golden Berlin Bear||Nominated|
|Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards||Best Director||Nominated|
|IF Awards||Best Direction||Won
2005 Cannes International Film festival "Yellow Fella"
|2011||Asia Pacific Screen Awards||UNESCO Award||Toomelah||Won|
|Cannes Film Festival||Un Certain Regard Award||Nominated|
|Cinemanila International Film Festival||International Competition||Nominated|
|2012||AACTA Awards||Byron Kennedy Award||Won|
|2014||Best Direction||Mystery Road||Nominated|
|Best Original Screenplay||Nominated|
|Australian Film Critics Association Awards||Best Director||Won|
|Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards||Best Director||Won|
|2016||AACTA Awards||Best Direction||Goldstone||Pending|
|Best Original Screenplay||Pending|
|BFI London Film Festival||Best Film||Nominated|
|Sydney Film Festival||Best Film||Nominated|
|Toronto International Film Festival||Platform Prize||Nominated|
- "SBS Film - Spreading the message by Mary Colbert".
- "Mystery Road". TIFF. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
- "Ivan Sen's follow-up to Mystery Road is set to shoot this month".
- "Toomelah and Sleeping Beauty selected for Cannes International Film Festival".
- Lawson, Sylvia (2006). "Along the 'pot-holed track': meditations on mixed inheritance in recent work by Ivan Sen and Dennis Mcdermott". Aboriginal History. 30: 211–217.
- Ivan Sen at the Internet Movie Database
- Beneath Clouds: language as simple as a look by Mike Walsh
- Ivan Sen Interview ABC Message Stick
- Cannes Film Festival
- Vibe Australia Celebrity Showcase
- Inside Film Magazine interview with Dannielle Hall and Damian Pitt
- Crossing Tracks: Indigenous Films from Australia
- Native Network