Helmed by director Rodrick MacKay who is also the writer of the film, 'The Furnace' stars Ahmed Malek along with Australian actors David Wenham and Jay Ryan.
Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) has nominated Egyptian actor Ahmed Malek in the Best Lead Actor category for his film The Furnace.
Ahmed Malek competes for this award with a slew of international actors, including Eric Bana, Simon Baker, and Caleb Landry Jones.
Starring Egyptian actor Ahmed Malek, David Wenham, Jay Ryan, Erik Thomson and Baykali Ganambarr among others, the film landed its world premiere at the Venice International Film Festival, and Arab premiere at El Gouna Film Festival, where it gained international critical acclaim.
The Furnace, set in the 1890s gold rush of Western Australia, is an unlikely hero’s tale, navigating greed and the search for identity in a new land. This feature film illuminates the forgotten history of Australia’s ‘Ghan’ cameleers, who were predominantly Muslim and Sikh men from India, Afghanistan and Persia, who traversed the nation’s vast desert interior, forming unique bonds with local Aboriginal people.
To escape a harsh existence and return home, a young Afghan cameleer partners with a mysterious bushman on the run with two 400oz Crown-marked gold bars. Together the unlikely pair must outwit a zealous police sergeant and his troopers in a race to reach a secret furnace – the one place where they can safely reset the bars to remove the mark of the Crown.
The film received production support from several institutes, including Screen Australia, in association with Screenwest, Lotterywest and the Western Australian Regional Film Fund. MAD Solutions handles the film’s distribution and marketing in the Arab World.
The Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards, known as the AACTA Awards, are presented annually to recognise excellence in the film and television industry, both locally and internationally, including the producers, directors, actors, writers, and cinematographers. They are generally considered to be the Australian counterpart of the Academy Awards for the US and the BAFTA Awards for the UK.