Kylie Munnich (Photo credit: Jade Ellis).
More than 60 per cent of the 500-plus people who responded to Screen Queensland’s survey on the impact on the screen sector from COVID-19 in the past two days are freelancers or contractors – and most are jobless.
That’s according to Screen Queensland CEO Kylie Munnich, who says the agency is committed to supporting the industry through this crisis as well as focusing on how to prepare for a full recovery when it’s business as usual.
Munnich has convened a broadly-based Queensland screen industry task force which will meet fortnightly or more frequently if required and is liaising closely with her team including head of development and production Jo Dillon.
The members are WildBear Entertainment principal and executive producer Veronica Fury, Bacon Factory Films director Dean Gibson, Hoodlum Entertainment chief content officer and former SQ CEO Tracey Vieira, Cutting Edge’s owner/director Michael Burton, Defiant Development co-founder Morgan Jaffit, City of Gold Coast business development officer, film attraction Gabrielle Jones and Ludo Studio’s finance and strategy exec Daniel Schultz.
The survey was due to close at 5 pm today but the agency will stretch the deadline to early next week to fully gauge the extent of the difficulties facing the sector in the state.
Munnich tells IF Screen Queensland will aim to accelerate projects via development and online mentoring and masterclasses.
The Queensland government is expected imminently to unveil a substantial support package for the sector.
As IF reported, Hoodlum Entertainment was forced to suspend production of the ABC’s Harrow 3 and pre-production on Baz Lurhmann’s untitled Elvis Presley biopic halted after Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson tested positive for the disease.
The second season of Jonathan M Shiff’s children’s fantasy The Bureau of Magical Things was shooting in Brisbane and the Gold Coast but was curtailed this week. The 20-part series was commissioned by Network 10, German pubcaster ZDF and Viacom-owned kids’ net Nickelodeon.
Production continues on Like A Photon Creative’s animated feature Combat Wombat, the follow-up to The Wishmas Tree, with animators working remotely.
Ricard Cusso Judson directed both films with Matt Everitt as consulting animation director. The third chapter in the franchise, Daisy Quokka, is in pre-production. Odin’s Eye Entertainment handles international sales on all three.