Blackfella Films documentary Maralinga Tjarutja is the winner of the 2020 Screen Diversity Inclusion Network (SDIN) Award.
The SDIN Award was created to honour Australian producers and projects which have made a significant contribution to diversity and inclusion, on and off screen.
Maralinga Tjarutja was announced as the winner this morning by SDIN co-chair Benjamin Law during a session at Screen Forever.
Maralinga Tjarutja land, located in regional South Australia, was used for the British Nuclear Test Program between 1953 and 1963. The Maralinga Tjarutja people, who have lived on the land for 60,000 years, fought for the clean-up of contamination, for compensation and for the handback in 2009 of the Maralinga Village and test sites.
The ABC one-off documentary, directed by Larissa Behrendt and produced by Darren Dale, tells this story and that of colonisation and dispossession through the eyes of the Maralinga Tjarutja people.
“Maralinga Tjarutja gave voice to the Maralinga people to tell their own story of cultural strength in the face of aggressive colonisation,” said Law on announcing the project’s win.
Other finalists for the SDIN award included Weerianna Street Media’s Thalu and Epic Films’ First Day.
All SDIN member organisations, which include all broadcasters, screen agencies, as well as guilds, business associations, MediaRING, FreeTV and AFTRS, nominated up to three entries each to create a long list of candidates.
The winner and nominees were selected by a panel of judges including Media Diversity Australia’s Shannan Dodson, Diversity Arts Australia’s Ade Djajamihardja, AFTRS’ Gary Paramanathan and SDIN co-chairs Law and Jo Dillon.
The panel agreed all three projects displayed a genuine, ethical and tender engagement with their subject matter and an importantly inclusive and collaborative approach.
This is the second time the SDIN Award has been presented; the previous winner was Ned Lander Media’s Little J and Big Cuz.