Getting started on a feature film could now be a little easier for Canberra filmmaker Cecilia Rumore after winning this year's People's Choice award at Tropfest in Sydney over the weekend.
The 29-year old's four and a half minute documentary Another Olga was the first recipient of the award to be decided via Facebook poll at the short film festival.
The film centres around holocaust survivor Olga Horak who migrated to Australia in her 20s after living through the horrors of Auschwitz, Dresden and Belsen concentration camps.
The film is Rumore's third short and her first since graduating Sydney film school last year.
Rumore has been wanting to do a feature film for some time, but may now have more luck getting film grants with the award to her name.
She said Another Olga was made on a shoestring budget, something she'd need to change to make a longer film.
"This film cost us 68 bucks so if you're doing a feature you're going to need a little bit more money."
Rumore said she'll feel more confident applying for grants with the win under her belt.
"I'm definitely going to apply for things this year and keep making content," she said. "We're going to try and cover all angles with Kickstarter and Screen Australia grants."
Rumore said her interest in social issues and reading Horak's book Auschwitz to Australia last year that led her on the path to creating Another Olga.
"I'm a social worker by day so I have always been interested in these sort of things," she said.
"I had read her book and found out she volunteers at the Jewish museum in Darlinghurst, so I organised to meet her out of interest and we ended up having a three-hour chat."
Rumore said while there were many holocaust documentaries, use of extreme close-ups and a focus on Horak's tendency towards hope set her documentary apart.
"I really wanted to work from the perspective of what she'd learnt from the experience rather than the experience itself," she said.
"We could do a whole different film from her story, that's how much of it there is, but we decided to go in this slightly different direction."
This year Tropfest entrants were required to work a pineapple into their films, a tall order for a documentary with such serious subject matter.
"They don't really go well together. We toyed with ideas of working it into shot but it's too random and would've looked ridiculous," Rumore said.
"We decided to work it into a quote at the beginning about a pineapple being soft on the inside but hard on the exterior, much like Olga."