Screen NSW brings 13 new TV and documentary productions to NSW
Screen NSW will invest more than $1.5 million in three new adult television dramas, three children’s series, five factual series and two significant one-off documentaries.
Thirteen new screen productions supported by the NSW Government will bring more than $30 million in direct production expenditure to the State, creating an estimated 1,574 jobs in the production and post-production.
Australians love watching Australian stories on their television screens and the three new dramas Screen NSW is supporting will make compelling viewing, with Catching Milat, the story about the hard working cop who brought serial killer Ivan Milat to justice and Maximum Choppage, a kung fu comedy series set in Cabramatta, showcasing the talents and expertise of NSW’s diverse screen industry.
Two of the productions will feature Indigenous stories with one-hour documentary, 88 telling the story of Aboriginal protests of the Bicentenary, 25 years on, from the protesters’ perspective, and the second series of Colour Theory with Richard Bell focusing on the work of eight Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander contemporary artists.
Regional NSW will also share in the benefits of this round of funding with the second series of popular children’s program Bushwacked, to film in several NSW locations including Sydney, Mendooran, the Warrumbungle National Park, Dubbo and Mt Kosciuszko.
Screen NSW also announced today that three of NSW’s most exciting emerging filmmaking teams will take the next major step in their cinema careers with each team awarded $30,000 from Screen NSW’s Emerging Filmmakers Fund to make a short film.
The three creative teams already have some impressive runs on the board with earlier short films and have shown a distinctive vision and absolute dedication to establishing careers as filmmakers.
Screen NSW’s Emerging Filmmakers Fund provides them with an opportunity to develop their skills and showcase their capabilities.
The three filmmaking teams to receive funding are:
• Writer/director, Mirrah Foulkes, and producer, Alex White, will make Florence Has Left The Building.
• Writer/director, Matt Durant, and producer, Martin Thorne, will make Pocket Money, set in the western suburbs of Sydney.
• Director, Lily Rolfe, and producer, Shay Spencer, will make The Tender Dark.
NSW producer, Angie Fielder, will supervise the projects as Executive Producer. Angie’s credits include the multi-award winning film Wish You Were Here, starring Joel Edgerton and Teresa Palmer. The film opened the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in the US.
Over the past eighteen years the Emerging Filmmakers Fund has supported emerging talent in the NSW screen industry to make 139 projects.
The 13 productions to be supported by Screen NSW are:
Title: Love Child
Company: Playmaker Media
Screen NSW support: $300,000 from Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 746 jobs and NSW production spend of $9,827,198
Production dates: June – October 2013
Synopsis: A new TV drama series, Love Child, goes back to the upheaval years of 1969 and six young women caught in the crossfire of changing times as they experience Sydney’s Kings Cross and ‘The Haven’, a maternity hospital and home for unwed mothers.
Title: Maximum Choppage
Company: Matchbox Pictures
Screen NSW support: $180,000 from Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 260 jobs and NSW production spend of $2,226,035
Production dates: October 2013 – February 2014
Synopsis: Maximum Choppage is a kung fu comedy series where identity, family and love are a battlefield. Set in the Western Sydney suburb of Cabramatta, this TV series takes the martial arts genre and gives it a distinctive Australian twist.
Title: Catching Milat
Company: Shine Australia
Screen NSW support: $200,000 grant from Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 245 jobs and NSW production spend of $5,149,343
Production dates: January – June 2014
Synopsis: Catching Milat follows the story of Detective Paul Gordon, the hard-working cop from Kings Cross who brought Australian serial killer, Ivan Milat, to justice.
Title: Bushwhacked Series 2
Company: Mint Pictures
Locations: NSW locations include Sydney, Mendooran, Warrumbungle National Park, Dubbo, Mt Kosciuszko
Screen NSW support: $70,000 from Production Finance Fund and a grant of $20,000 from the Regional Filming Fund
Jobs and production investment: 48 jobs and production spend of $1,178,796
Production dates: June 2013 – March 2014
Synopsis: Bushwhacked! is a factual series for 7-14 year-olds that follows the inspirational adventures of two kids – one indigenous, one non-indigenous – who crisscross Australia in search of unique wildlife and Aboriginal rites and rituals.
Title: In your Dreams Series 2
Company: Southern Star
Screen NSW support: $270,000 from Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 80 jobs and production spend of $5,375,658
Production dates: November 2013 – December 2014
Synopsis: Identical twins, Ben and Samantha, leave their home at an Australian nature park to help their German relatives Philipp and Lili save their aristocratic castle from scheming cousin Hermann.
Title: Blue Zoo
Company: Air Pig Productions
Locations: Coffs Harbour
Screen NSW support: $100,000 from the Production Finance Fund and a grant of $100,000 from the Regional Filming Fund
Jobs and production investment: 27 jobs and production spend of $1,808,663
Production dates: 26 August – December 2013
Blue Zoo gives eight Australian and Irish teenagers aged between 14 and 16 the adventure of a lifetime. The ‘Marine 8 Rookies’ will become interns at an Australian marine conservation park to train as elite marine experts. Blue Zoo will showcase Australia to international audiences and increase the presence of Australian characters and stories in the domestic children’s television market. The project also features a significant regional spend in the Coffs Harbour area.
Factual TV series
Title: The Tipping Points
Company: Unboxed Media
Locations: Mostly overseas, some in Pittwater, Sydney
Screen NSW support: $20,000 from Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 60 jobs and production spend of $437,746, includes 100% of post-production
Production dates: June/July 2013
Synopsis: The Tipping Points is a factual series examining nine new tipping points in our climate system that may hold the key to our planet’s future. A science adventure series in which leading scientists take us off the grid to explore these locations and answer the biggest question of all: is our climate system approaching a tipping point, and what is our timeline to change?
Title: Colour Theory with Richard Bell 2
Company: No Coincidence Media Pty Ltd
Screen NSW support: $31,500 from the Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 17 jobs and production spend of $362,238
Production dates: July – September 2013
Artist and self proclaimed ‘show off’ Richard Bell will introduce the audience to the eight Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander contemporary artists and offer his insider’s view into what makes these artists tick. No Coincidence Media Pty Ltd is an emerging Indigenous-owned production company headed by NSW-based producer Mitchell Stanley. Writer Hetti Perkins is an internationally renowned expert on Australian Indigenous art, director James Marshall has a long history directing documentaries about Indigenous art and producer Mitchell Stanley is following up the success of series one to launch series two. The company has never received Screen NSW production finance. This series offers Indigenous and non-Indigenous viewers a window into Indigenous art.
Title: Wizards of Oz
Company: Mint Pictures and Serendipity Productions
Screen NSW support: $40,500 from the Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 8 jobs and production spend of $709,391
Production dates: September 2013 – March 2014
This documentary series, hosted and written by Booker Prize winner Howard Jacobson, retraces the footsteps from Australia to Britain of iconoclasts Germaine Greer, Barry Humphries, Robert Hughes and Clive James, and ponders the irony that Britain sent convicts to Australia and, in return, Australia sent its best and brightest; its irreverent and irrepressible.
Title: Family Confidential
Company: Southern Pictures
Screen NSW support: $30,000 from the Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 12 jobs and production spend of $1,097,801
Production dates: July – November 2013
Family Confidential takes us inside the homes and lives of some of Australia's most famous and iconic families, revealing the hidden truths behind the public headlines. Among the six families featured will be Wolverine star, Hugh Jackman, as well as political opposites, former Howard Government Treasurer, Peter Costello and his social issues campaigner, brother Tim.
Title: Taking on the Chocolate Frog
Screen NSW support: $64,000 from the Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 34 jobs and production spend of $1,159,095
Production dates: August 2013 – February 2014
This three-part documentary series from Screentime, the producers of Underbelly, follows a group of hardened ex-criminals as they re-invent themselves as actors; performing a play by the award-winning prison playwright, Jim McNeil.
Title: Outback Choir
Company: Heiress Films
Locations: Coonamble, Baradine, Lightning Ridge, Cobar, Walgett, Brewarrina, Bourke, Sydney (all tbc)
Screen NSW support: $40,000 from the Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 20 jobs and production spend of $464,583
Production dates: July – October 2013
Revealed through the casting and performance of a youth choir across regional and rural NSW for a single performance, this is an intimate portrait of growing up in regional Australia and the huge difference one small choir and the gift of music can make. Outback Choir offers a fresh insight into life in regional NSW as well as the challenges of fostering culture and fulfilment in more remote communities. The choir’s involvement with Indigenous communities will also be covered.
Company: Pursekey Productions
Screen NSW support: $45,000 from the Production Finance Fund
Jobs and production investment: 17 jobs and production spend of $643,940
Production dates: July – December 2013
88 is a one-hour documentary about the Bicentenary Aboriginal protest action in Sydney on January 26, 1988. With the context of 25 years since the Bicentenary, the story is ripe for telling from an Indigenous perspective. The director states that the film will offer many people their first opportunity to better understand the news images of the protest from the perspective of the protesters.