Australia and Korea get closer behind the scenes

01 October, 2014 by IF


Top Australian filmmakers head to Korea for two weeks of festival screenings and to forge new opportunities in the Australia-Korea relationship.


Screen Australia and the Korean Film Council (KOFIC) will sign an official Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on 4 October in Busan. The MoU signing is part of the process to enable official film and television co-productions to be made by the two countries. Screen Australia and KOFIC, who will sign on behalf of the Korea Communications Commission (KCC), will implement the Co-production Arrangement once the Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement, containing an Annex on Audiovisual Co-production, is in place.

Screen Australia’s Chief Operating Officer, Fiona Cameron, who is to sign the MoU on behalf of Screen Australia, said, “This agreement will ready us to accept applications as soon as the Free Trade Agreement comes into force, which will permit immediate commencement of official co-productions between the two countries. Australia is a great partner and used to working collaboratively. This new step will present some fantastic opportunities for both countries especially in children’s animation.”

Ms Cameron will attend the 35th Australia-Korea Business Council and Korea-Australia Business Council Joint Meeting, 1–2 October, where she will chair a session of the Services Sector Promotion Forum focusing on audiovisual co-production opportunities. Renowned Australian producers Robert Connolly (Arenamedia), Tania Chambers (Feisty Dame Productions) and Michael Tear (WildBear Entertainment) will act as Australian Screen Ambassadors throughout the visit.

Writer/director/producer Robert Connolly’s Paper Planes and producer Tania Chambers’ Kill Me Three Times (d: Kriv Stenders) along with two other Australian films, The Mule (d: Angus Sampson, Tony Mahony) and Wyrmwood (w/d: Kiah Roache-Turner), will have their Asian premieres at the prestigious Busan International Film Festival, 2–11 October.

Writer/director/producer Robert Connolly said, “Paper Planes was made with a significant creative and financial contribution from Korea, working with the talented team at EMIG in Gwangju on the 3D conversion and VFX. This MoU between Screen Australia and KOFIC is a major step in encouraging Australian and Korean filmmakers to collaborate with support from both countries, and we look forward to working with Korea again in the near future.”

The Australian presence will be further enhanced with the official Australian stand at the 2014 Asian Film Market, managed by Austrade. Last year the market attendance rose 16 per cent with 1,272 participants from 733 companies and 49 countries in attendance.