Ray Argall


Ray Argall is a director and cinematographer currently based in Sydney, Australia.

He has spent the last 8 years working on Midnight Oil 1984. A vivid portrait of the era and the songs that embodied it, Midnight Oil 1984 is an up close and personal look at the iconic rock band, seen on the big screen for the first time.

A graduate of the Australian Film Television and Radio School in 1980, Ray comes from a showbiz family. Both his parents are musicians and his sister is Janet Argall, a TV director.

Ray has enjoyed a colourful and productive presence in a filmmaking career spanning three decades. In that time he has directed short dramas, documentaries and features.

He established a reputation as one of Australia’s most innovative cinematographers through his work on features such as Wrong World (1985), The Prisoner of St Petersberg (1989) and The Plains of Heaven (1982). Ray worked with Sarah Watt as DOP for the box office success Look Both Ways (2005), winner of the 2005 AFI award for Best Film and the Film Critics Circle of Australia, and nominated for Best Non-European Film at the European Film Awards.

Ray’s first feature as writer and director, Return Home (1990), received the 1990 AFI Award for Best Director, as well as the Film Critics Circle of Australia Award for Best Director and Best Film. It screened at many festivals including Berlin, Edinburgh, Seattle and a retrospective in Cannes 1998. In 1991 Ray wrote and directed Eight Ball, produced by Timothy White and screened on ABC TV the following year. Using music as a voice and character is a theme that runs throughout his films – as personified in One Out Of The Bag (2006) a feature length concert film of the Split Enz 2006 reunion tour.

He was a set-up director for the award winning ABC drama series SeaChange and MDA; and produced over sixty music videos for Midnight Oil, Split Enz, Crowded House, and Hoodoo Guru’s among others. Recent work includes music doco Rockwiz at Bluesfest – behind the scenes with Henry Wagons for Renegade Films and the digital film restoration of the iconic 1987 concert Australian Made.

Ray was President of the Australian Directors Guild (ADG) for over ten years. During that time he represented Australian filmmakers in many forums, and presented discussions on the Australian industry and its filmmakers at festivals around the world. He is now a joint company director of Piccolo Films along with Lucinda Clutterbuck.

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