By Brendan Swift
The South Australian government is preparing to slash the funding of the South Australian Film Corporation and the Adelaide Film Festival according to leaked budget documents.
The 310-page document, obtained by several SA-based media outlets, outlines plans to cut the SAFC's budget by $2.2 million – or 40 per cent – in 2013-14. Meanwhile the Adelaide Film Festival would be "terminated" after next year's festival.
However, there is also speculation that the SA Labor government has itself been the source of the leak in an attempt to soften up the electorate ahead of tomorrow's official budget release.
Treasurer Kevin Foley would not discuss the government's plans when questioned by ABC Adelaide.
The leaked document warns of the impact the budget cuts will have on the local SA industry.
"Savings would likely come from reductions in funding for the Revolving Film Fund, the Producer Equity Scheme, the Enterprise Development Program and the SA Film Lab initiative, all of which would result in a significant reduction in film making in SA, the loss of experienced film practitioners who would have no choice but to go interstate to find ongoing work and a reduction in SAFC support for the SA screen industry," the document said.
The proposed cuts are a direct threat to the construction of the Adelaide Film and Screen Hub at Glenside, which is aimed at supporting SA's feature film industry and related production and audiovisual activities.
Several major local productions have been filmed in SA in recent years including Beautiful Kate, Last Ride and the upcoming Road Train.
The document also warns of the impact a proposed $1.18 million budget cut by 2013-14 to the Adelaide Film Festival will have on the industry.
"Almost half of the funding provided by the SA Government to AFF has been used for investment in films, specifically to provide assistance to bring to the screen new Australian documentary, short, feature and animation works. This source of investment to attract film making to SA would be lost, with a resultant loss of film production in SA," the document said.
"The proposal is to terminate the Adelaide Film Festival after the February/March 2011 festival."