Armagan Ballantyne, Alyx Duncan and Gillian Ashurst will each receive $25,000 to further their commitment to feature filmmaking.
The initiative received 30 applications, with recipients decided by Preston, with input from The Rehearsal director Alison Maclean.
Application criteria included the requirement that applicants had completed a feature or equivalent. Ashurst’s Snakeskin was released in 2001, Ballantyne’s The Strength of Water in 2009 and and Duncan’s The Red House in 2012.
The award is the second in an ongoing annual programme focused on areas of the industry where female participation is low. The Gaylene Preston Directors Award follows last year’s JC Cinefem Scholarship, which was awarded to Maria Ines Manchego. A new scholarship will be introduced in 2017.