Press Release

Say My Name (2023) Australian Short Film Wins International Awards

Filmed in Sydney, Australia, Say My Name has won two prestigious awards, Award of Merit (for Women Filmmakers) and Award of Recognition (for Contemporary issues / Awareness raising) from the IndieFEST Film Awards. Director, Rhoyce Nova, Producer, Mel Baker, and lead actor and composer, Quinn, set the tone for women filmmakers, assisted by Zachary Peel-McGregor as Director of Photography. The newly completed short film, Say My Name, is based on Mel’s first book in a trilogy, Sleeping Under the Bridge (2022), about her younger life as a violated, homeless teenager sleeping on the streets of Sydney.

Say My Name poster award winning film

Say My Name features poetically gritty visuals combined with emotive musical composition and an underlying tone of authenticity, in a storyline that invites social change.

Having just completed the film less than a month ago, I held my breath as I was reading the IndieFEST email letting us know we are a winner, and of two awards! This film raises awareness into issues we need to talk more about as a society such as homelessness, domestic violence, child sexual abuse and suicidality. There are over 122,000 Australians experiencing homelessness every night, and majority of these people come from domestic and family violence (Mission Australia). Over 65,000 Australians make a suicide attempt each year, and around 3,000 of the unfortunately die (Black Dog Institute). My hope is that this film inspires many people that we can triumph over any adversity.

Mel Baker, Producer and Co-writer

To receive two IndieFEST awards for my first outing as a pro writer/director was beyond thrilling, not just for the recognition, but for the awareness that the attention will being to this important film. Not enough stories are told about the intimate experience of homelessness or suicide, so it is my hope that Say My Name resonates with audiences and goes some way into opening a dialogue about these subjects. To be entrusted as the keeper of Mel’s harrowing young life story was a precious honour, and to work with the likes of award-winning cinematographer, Zachary Peel-McGregor, and talented composer, Quinn, took my filmmaking to the next level. I shall be forever grateful for the opportunity.

Rhoyce Nova, Director and Co-writer

The IndieFEST Film Awards recognizes film, television, videography and new media professionals who demonstrate exceptional achievement in craft and creativity, and those who produce standout entertainment or contribute to profound social change. Entries are judged by highly qualified professionals in the film and television industry. Information about the IndieFEST and a list of recent winners can be found at

In winning an IndieFEST Film Award, Say My Name joins the ranks of other high-profile winners of this internationally respected award including 2021 Academy Award winner “If Anything Happens I Love You” by Laura Dern, Will McCormack and Michael Govier,  Oscar-nominee Liam Neeson as the narrator of Love Thy Nature,  A Path Appears Documentary featuring Oscar-winner George Clooney and Blake Lively, Radical Grace executive produced by Oscar-winner Susan Sarandon, a searing expose Davids and Goliath by Peabody winner Leon Lee, and Touched with Fire starring Katie Holmes. 

Rick Prickett, who chairs The IndieFEST Film Awards, had this to say about the latest winners, “The IndieFEST is not an easy award to win. Entries are received from around the world from powerhouse companies to remarkable new talent. The IndieFEST helps set the standard for craft and creativity. The judges were pleased with the exceptional high quality of entries. The goal of The IndieFEST Film Awards is to help winners achieve the recognition they deserve.”

To view the trailer, download the press kit and for media interviews: go here.

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