For a "little backyard film" as director and film-maker Anthony 'Ash' Brennan refers to it "We are Conjola - Our Fire Our Story" is certainly making some big waves.
The documentary that tells the story of the Black Summer bushfires and in particular the impact on the tiny village of Conjola on NSW's South Coast has picked up a number of awards around the world including at the New York Film Awards, Canada's Environmental Film Festival and IndieFEST Film Awards in Los Angeles.
"We are Conjola - Our Fire Our Story" was an honourable mention at the New York Film Awards, won the best feature at the Environmental Film Festival in Canada and won an Award of Excellence at the IndieFEST Film Awardsin Los Angeles.
It is also a finalist at the Melbourne Documentary Film Festival in the best film section, while Anthony has also been nominated for best director. Those awards will be announced later this month.
"It's amazing how popular our little film is proving," he said.
"Once completed I entered the film in a couple of film festivals and interest grew from around the world with others asking me to enter into other festivals.
"I was surprised how successful it has been."
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Anthony said he is proud of how the film has been received.
"I refer to "We are Conjola" as our little backyard film," he said.
"It had no proper funding, most of the funding came from people who lost their houses, people who wanted their voices heard.
"When you consider our little backyard film is up against properly funded films, made by famous directors and we are still winning awards against productions like that is great commentary on how this story is not just Australian but an international story.
"Obviously, I'm very proud of what we've achieved, but I never like taking the single acknowledgement - this film would not have been possible without the people of Conjola.
"Their bravery in telling their stories on film.
"We are Conjola - Our Fire Our Story" had no proper funding, most of the funding came from people who lost their houses, people who wanted their voices heard.Director and film maker Anthony 'Ash' Brennan
"Any awards for this film are accepted on behalf of the people of Conjola, my production team and all those who supported us.
"I hope the story gets out there and results in the messages we are trying to get across and results in some action on climate change and how to properly manage bush and the environment.
"Our little backyard film is certainly punching above its weight."
After almost being wiped off the map, 80 houses were destroyed, the traumatised community of Conjola waited for help. But it never came. Conjola was abandoned and left for dead.
"We are Conjola - Our Fire Our Story" is the story of the village's battles and how local artists then started creating as a way of healing.
Anthony, like many others, lost a property when the Currowan bushfire exploded into the Lake Conjola area on New Year's Eve 2019.
Working in the sports broadcast area, he had just finished work on the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne and was preparing to leave for Perth to cover the tennis when he received a notification on the Fires Near Me App about the fire impacting Conjola.
Obviously, I'm very proud of what we've achieved, but this film would not have been possible without the people of Conjola. Their bravery in telling their stories on film.Director and film maker Anthony 'Ash' Brennan
"Even though I wasn't in the area at the time the message said 'it was too late to leave'," he said.
He rang his brother and sister-in-law who lived in the village and heard about the tragedy and devastation that was unfolding.
The house he lost had been in the family for 35 years and he was planning on moving into it permanently.
From a Perth hotel room, he saw the first image of what used to be his house in the background of a news report.
During a community gathering back in the village, Anthony spoke to a local artist who "wanted to start creating again to heal."
"It was a lightbulb moment," Anthony said, who heard how other artists and writers were back creating wonderful pieces of art and decided the process needed to be documented.
His background in sports broadcast along with his experience in short films and documentary making came to the fore.
Because of his connection to the community, many people came forward wanting to tell their stories, sharing many harrowing accounts of that brutal day.
"Originally the documentary was going to show how important artists are to a community," he said.
But it has developed into much more than that.
You can see "We are Conjola - Our Fire Our Story" in New Zealand on Rialto TV (on the Sky platform) or stream it on Films for Change and Hyvio streaming services.
"We wanted an independent cinema release but COVID, unfortunately, killed that," he said.
However, there have been nine sold-out screenings of the film in Ulladulla, which Anthony described as a "highlight".
"To be able to sit among locals and hear their gasps, cries and laughter has been the highlight of the whole journey for me," he said.