At the age of four Daniel Connors was technically deceased after being underwater for 20 minutes. When he miraculously survived, his mother felt that he was destined to do ‘something’ with his life. When director Ivan Sen watched ten year-old Daniel stand up for himself against a group of teenagers on the streets of the Toomelah mission, he recognised that Daniel had the right presence to become the driving force of his film. Daniel is supported in the lead role by his father Michael, who plays his alcoholic dad, and sister Daneeka, who takes up the role of his girlfriend Tanitia. Daniel Connors was embraced by the press and the audience after the world premiere of Toomelah (2011) competing in the Un Certain Regard at the 64th Cannes Film Festival. As a first time actor, he was considered a natural talent and his performance was described as outstanding. The film screened in competition at the 2011 Sydney Film Festival. Toomelah won the Festival Grand Prix for Best Feature at the International Film Festival of Asia-Pacific Countries in Vladivostok.
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