SYDNEY, Sept. 2 (Xinhua) -- The Australian film industry is starting to slip because of "very dramatic cuts" in government funding to Screen Australia, said London Film Festival Director Clare Stewart.
Stewart has expressed her concern about the state of Australian cinema after revealing the full program for next month's London film festival at its launch in Leicester Square on Thursday.
The Australian Associated Press reported on Friday that while there were terrific Australian films in the London line-up such as Lion, starring Nicole Kidman and Dev Patel, this year the number of films being made in Australia was down, which was a concern for Stewart who was formerly the Sydney Film Festival director from 2006 to 2011.
"I think that the very dramatic cuts to Screen Australia have had a noticeable impact," said Stewart.
"My concern about the state of the Australian film industry is very much about the need for the government to be properly investing in the supporting of development and production of films," she said.
Stewart said there was certainly plenty of film talent in Australia.
"I get excited about how rich the Australian creative pool is," she said, citing Lion, one of the three key presentations in the London festival.
"That is a sign of just how internationally significant Australian film-making can be."
Stewart said she thought Lion would get a lot of attention in the lead-up to this year's award season.
The film, directed by Garth Davis, revolves around Saroo Brierley (Patel), who at the age of five gets on the wrong train in India and ends up far from home.
He is adopted by an Australian couple (played by Kidman and David Wenham) and 25 years later finds his birth parents using Google Earth.
Another Australian film at the festival is the crime thriller Goldstone, written and directed by Ivan Sen and starring Aaron Pedersen, Alex Russell, Jacki Weaver, David Wenham and David Gulpilil.
It centres on indigenous detective Jay Swan who is sent to the mining town of Goldstone to find a missing Asian tourist.
Also, screening is Eva Orner's Chasing Asylum, a documentary confronting Australia's hardline policy on detaining asylum seekers in offshore processing centres.
Director Abe Forsythe's comedy Down Under, about the 2005 Sydney Cronulla race riots, will also get a run.