ALSTONVILLE lad Nic Hamilton is $3000 richer thanks to Nicole Kidman and an outstanding performance in the short film Time.
Time was one of 16 finalists at last weekend's Tropfest film festival and 12-year-old Nic picked up the award for best male actor, ahead of many stars of Australian film and television.
Nic played the role of a schoolboy convinced he had travelled through time to leave a message for himself in a secret location.
At the climax of the film he rescues his mum from a car that had crashed into the water, smashing the window with a rock that may have been sent from the future.
It is a gripping, emotional performance and the judges (including Sam Worthington, Richard Roxburgh, Magda Szubanski, Rebecca Gibney and The Sapphires director Wayne Blair) obviously agreed.
But when they called Nic's name to come up and collect his trophy and the cheque from Nicole Kidman, he was so stunned that he missed his big moment on stage.
"I was on the other side of the oval and I wasn't quick enough to get to the stage," he said.
But apart from that, he said the whole experience was pretty cool.
"It was amazing. The atmosphere was spectacular. I got to meet so many celebrities and realised they're just normal people," he said.
The Tropfest final was held at The Domain in Sydney in front of 90,000 people, with satellite events in several other cities and a live TV audience on SBS-TV.
Nic missed the celebrity after party because he was too young to get in to the bar, but it's probably just as well. After a few hours sleep he was on a plane back home and then up to the Gold Coast for an audition for an American TV series.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.