(Top row: Samuel Rodwell, Isabel Darling, Hiromi Matsuoka, middle row: Michelle Patkowski, Jess Wheatley, bottom row: Rebecca O’Brien, Jo Coby, Robyn Marais)

Seven creatives from across regional NSW and one from the Pilbara in Western Australia have been selected to participate in Screenworks 2020 Career Pathways Program, funded by Screen NSW and Screenwest.

The selected early-career regional writers, directors and producers will each receive support to progress their careers from Screenworks, Screen Producers Australia, the Australian Directors’ Guild and a number of top Australian production companies through placements, mentoring, industry introductions and professional development.

Selected for the 2020 Regional Producer Elevator Program are Northern Rivers NSW based Jo Coby, South Coast NSW based Hiromi Matsuoka and Robyn Marais from the Pilbara in Western Australia.

Screenworks has partnered with Jungle Entertainment, Matchbox Pictures and Fremantle for this programs. Participants will spend at least five days at one of these production companies to shadow and observe a professional working producer who will also give them career and project advice.

Each of the selected participants will also receive: entry to the 2020 Screenworks Business of Producing Seminar in Ballina in March 2020 and registration at the 2020 Screen Forever Conference on the Gold Coast in November 2020 where they will be able to participate in selected emerging producer sessions through Screen Producers Australia’s (SPA) Ones to Watch program. Each recipient will alos receive support from SPA in finding a mentor to work with them in the lead up to Screen Forever, plus $3,500 to go toward their professional/career development.

Selected for the 2020 Director Pathways Program are Northern Rivers NSW based Rebecca O’Brien and South Coast NSW based Isabel Darling. Rebecca and Isabel will each receive $3,500 to support the implementation of their bespoke career plans to advance their careers as directors.

Selected for the 2020 Inside the Writers Room program are Michelle Patkowski from South West NSW who will observe a writers room at Easy Tiger, Jess Wheatley from the Northern Rivers of NSW who will head to Every Cloud Productions and Samuel Rodwell from Central Western NSW who will go to Fremantle Australia.  Each of these early-career writers will have the opportunity to observe a professional writers room in progress over a number of days.

“We were blown away by the calibre of applicants for our 2020 Career Pathway Programs,” said Screenworks CEO Ken Crouch.  “It clearly demonstrates the extensive talent living in regional areas and the value of these programs in creating opportunities to connect to the industry.  We also really value the support the partner production companies and industry guilds provide to help us bring these opportunities to regional creatives.”