Screenrights has announced five projects will be supported by the 2022 round of its annual Cultural Fund, to total $213,083 in funding for this year’s focus of ‘New Opportunities’. Celebrating its fifth year, the Screenrights Cultural Fund has now supported Australian and New Zealand initiatives with over $1 million in grant funding since it was established in 2018.
“This year’s New Opportunities focus inspired many fantastic applications, which made a tough job for our assessors. The five funded initiatives showcase a diverse range of project aims and will benefit a variety of participants,” said Screenrights Board Director and Cultural Fund Working Group Chair Geoffrey Atherden. “We’re excited to see the outcomes of these initiatives, and know that they will help break down barriers for under-represented storytellers to the benefit of our screen industry and audiences.”
For the first time, in 2022 Screenrights provided an Expression of Interest process to assist less experienced applicants who might benefit from extra support during the application stage. Indicative of the success of this approach, two out of the five successful grant recipients had engaged with this process.
Arts & Cultural Exchange will receive $49,983 for ‘Screen Trades’, a training scheme addressing shortages in the areas of VFX, Production Accounting and Assistant Camera roles for diverse practitioners by providing industry-focused craft development and professional employment pathways for early career screen practitioners from First Nations and culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) communities. Goolarri Media Enterprises will receive $50K for the ‘Goolarri Writers Program’ series of tutorials, masterclasses and mentoring opportunities that supports emerging Indigenous performance writers in the Kimberley. Pacific Kids’ Learning will receive $50K for two-day stop motion workshops provided to 40 year six Pasifika primary school students through the ‘Young Pasifika Animators’ program, which is designed to teach practical skills that will open up young minds to the possibilities of animation and screen industry careers.
Arts & Cultural Exchange’s Executive Director Anne Loxley said, “With the screen industry reporting crucial shortages in below-the-line jobs, but only advertising 14% of vacancies, how do early career practitioners from historically underrepresented communities get in the door? The Screenrights Cultural Fund grant enables ACE (with TAFE NSW) to pilot three skill sets: VFX, Production Accounting and Assistant Camera. As well as training, the SCREEN TRADES program establishes industry pathways.”
‘See Them: Be Them’ is a series of three workshops for 14-18 year olds from POW Studios which will receive $29,100 to demystify the world of post production for marginalised young people in Aotearoa; and ‘TV Pilot Initiative’ is an Indigenous-led program delivered by Channel 44 in partnership with SAFC First Nations that will receive $34,000 in funding to help South Australian First Nations participant filmmakers to develop and grow their skills through mentoring and masterclasses on developing collaborative and long format projects as a ‘hired gun’.
“Building inclusive content begins with the team creating it. I think it’s vital for our young people to see themselves reflected in post-production roles. Thanks to Screenrights for supporting this vision, it’s a real privilege,” said Marie Silberstein, POW Studios’ Head of Development & Production.
Applications were assessed by a panel of professionals with both local and international expertise in screen, media and education.
Photo caption Channel 44’s ‘Mob Talks’ production with Keith Gilbey-Warrior (producer/director) and host Marcellus Enalanga pictured, photo credit: Brad Halstead.
ABOUT THE SUCCESSFUL PROJECTS
Activity: Screen Trades aims to address shortages in the areas of VFX, Production Accounting and Assistant Camera roles for diverse practitioners, by providing a training scheme with industry-focused craft development and professional employment pathways for early career screen practitioners from First Nations and culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) communities. Up to 60 participants will engage in craft training, and up to 9 participants will engage in paid professional placements with professional production companies and/or broadcasters. The program is a partnership between Arts & Cultural Exchange, TAFE NSW, and leading industry partners Moneypenny Production Accounting Services, Panavision, NITV, EQ Media Group and Lingo Pictures.
Location: Parramatta, NSW, Australia
Amount Funded: A$49,983
Goolarri Writers Program
Activity: The Goolarri Writers Program is a series of tutorials, masterclasses and mentoring opportunities that supports emerging Indigenous performance writers in the Kimberley to gain the professional skills to create their own stories for film, stage and online platforms. Goolarri will continue their support of 8 writers as well as nurture a new cohort of 6 writers in developing the craft required to create new professional stories for regional, national and international audiences, and to build a more sustainable local industry by enabling artists to grow the skills integral to making outstanding artistic products while staying in their communities.
Recipient Quote: “Goolarri Media is really appreciative of the support being given by Screenrights to the Goolarri Writers Program. This program has been supporting First Nations writers from the Kimberley region for a number of years to develop and hone their writing skills and assist them to create their stories for film, stage, and online platforms. This funding will enable us to expand our program by taking on a new cohort of First Nations writers who can contribute to a more sustainable local arts industry through the creation of stories for a regional, national and international market.” – Jodie Bell, CEO, Goolarri Media Enterprises Pty Ltd
Location: Broome, WA, Australia
Amount Funded: A$50,000
Young Pasifika Animators
Activity: Young Pasifika Animators will provide two separate two-day stop motion workshops for 40 year six Pasifika primary school students. The workshops will show students all the steps involved in making their own stop motion animation video, from the beginning of the story development process right through to narration, sound effects and video editing. The fun and engaging sessions delivered by creative industry experts are designed to teach practical skills that will open up young minds to the possibilities of animation or screen industry careers.
Recipient Quote: “Pacific Kids’ Learning is humbled to receive this funding from Screenrights, which will support young Pasifika creatives to learn about telling their stories using stop motion animation. In addition to seeing how their culture can be an integral part of their success in the workplace, Pasifika youth can see how their innate love of drawing and art can be turned into a career in digital screen production and animation. We have seen from a business perspective how hard it is to find qualified Pasifika animators in our industry, and we want to inspire the next generation of Pasifika to see the screen industry as a viable career path that is within their reach.”
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Amount Funded: A$50,000
See Them: Be Them
Activity: See Them: Be Them is a series of three workshops for 14-18 year olds designed to demystify the world of post production for marginalised young people in Aotearoa. Predominantly Pasifika, Māori and Asian mentors will visit schools to share their craft, workshop tips and tricks and answer questions. The sessions will also be available to remote learners across the country virtually. The workshops will aim not only to demonstrate the steps involved in the technical aspects of post production but also broaden young people’s understanding of the creativity found in these vital roles.
Location: Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, New Zealand
Amount Funded: A$29,100
TV Pilot Initiative
Activity: The TV Pilot Initiative is a First Nations-led program delivered by Channel 44 in partnership with the SAFC and with support from Screen Australia that will support emerging South Australian First Nations participant filmmakers to develop and grow their skills. Some of Australia’s most experienced First Nations TV practitioners will provide mentoring and masterclasses on developing collaborative and long format projects as a ‘hired gun’. The initiative will be delivered to 20-30 filmmakers, with the aim of creating sustainable careers.
Recipient Quotes: “After the success of recent First Nations led production of Mob Talks (release date Nov 2022) Channel 44 are thrilled to be able to deliver this new First Nations initiative alongside our partnership with the South Australian Film Corporation’s First Nations Screen Strategy. This exciting initiative will see some of Australia’s most experienced First Nations TV practitioners provide mentoring and masterclasses to elevate emerging SA First Nations screen creators and provide future pathways for ongoing industry employment.” – Lauren Hillman, General Manager of Channel 44 Adelaide
“Our emerging sector wanted to grow their skills further into the industry. This initiative will help to lift the voices of South Australian First Nations into writing not just one offs, but look at the potential of the stories that are in the community and culminating in working together in a writer’s room with experts from the First Nations sector giving insights into how to write for TV. We know that this initiative will benefit our sector and give our First Nations sector a boost to learn from some of our leading Indigenous voices in TV. The work that Nara Wilson and Channel 44 have done in interning our sector into production roles over the last few years at Channel 44, gives us a strategy to hopefully roll one of these projects out into production in the coming years.” – Pauline Clague, Executive of First Nations Strategy, SAFC
Location: SA, Australia
Amount Funded: A$34,000