Create NSW ramps up screen content and professional opportunities across the state

DocTalk 2016 at Antenna Film Festival with Lars Meyer of Dok Leipzig, with Ruth Cullen moderating. Image courtesy Antenna Film Festival

This year’s Create NSW Industry and Audience Development Program funding has supported a total of 19 projects through a grant of $199,500, including a screening program for teachers and students, regional and metropolitan film festivals and even the ‘world’s first entirely solar powered film festival’ in Broken Hill.

Create NSW CEO Michael Brealey said, “This funding is important in providing opportunities for further development across NSW’s thriving screen culture in Sydney and across the regions. The grants support a fantastic array of film festivals making non-mainstream cinema available to audiences across regional centres, in Western Sydney and in the city.

Recipients of the Audience Development funding include the Real Film Festival in the Hunter Valley, the (solar-powered) Perfect Light Film Festival in Broken Hill, The Access All Areas Film Festival and the 25 Years of My Queer Career event which will celebrate the 25th anniversary of Queer Screen and its annual Mardi Gras Film Festival.

“Alongside these valuable audience initiatives, we’re proud to be able to support a range of professional development programs that create opportunities for emerging screen creatives and further the capacity of more established screen professionals.

Industry funding recipients include the second annual Freshflix Emerging Filmmakers’ Conference to help the next generation of Aussie filmmakers learn about the industry and the CuriousWorks Breakthrough! Development Program which focuses on young, talented writers and storytellers from underprivileged and culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

“The screen sector in NSW is buzzing with activity, including a slate of new film and television productions made possible through our Made in NSW and production finance funding. These new grants through the Create NSW Industry and Audience Development Programs help contribute to the success of the industry by building audiences and the skillset of both new and experienced filmmakers,” Mr Brealey said.

For further information on the Create NSW Industry and Audience Development Programs and other funding opportunities, including targeted support, please click here or email

Audience Development Fund

  •  Access All Areas Film Festival: $5,000 to The Bardic Studio to help stage the film festival that screens high quality short and feature films that reflect the lived experience of people with disability in ways that are accessible for people with disability. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney, Central Coast, Central West, Far West, Hunter, Illawarra, Mid-North Coast, Murray, Murrumbidgee, North Western, Northern, Richmond-Tweed, South Eastern, Not In NSW.
  • Antenna Film Festival: $30,000 over three years to help stage Australia’s annual seven-day International Documentary Film Festival. The event includes a Gala Awards evening, Q&A sessions, International guests, masterclasses, workshops, retrospective program and other special audience and industry events. Locations: Sydney Metro and Western Sydney.
  • Australian Teachers of Media (ATOM) Awards National Screenings Tour, Streaming, Study Guides: $6,000 to enable a free tour of screenings for students and the public, showing recent ATOM award-winning, locally sourced screen content from students, emerging producers and established media professionals. Funding will also enable the development of the online shop for enhanced retail sales and streaming capabilities across schools and libraries, and to promote study guides and editorial articles to wider audiences in NSW. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney, Central Coast, Central West, Far West, Hunter, Illawarra, Mid-North Coast, Murray, Murrumbidgee, North Western, Northern, Richmond-Tweed, South Eastern NSW.
  • Film Outreach Australia: $5,000 to help the organisation develop a Regional Screen Activation Project that enables regional venues and organisations to develop their own film and screen culture audiences. Locations: Central Coast, Central West, Far West, Hunter, Illawarra, Mid-North Coast, Murray, Murrumbidgee, North Western, Northern, Richmond-Tweed, South Eastern NSW.
  • For Film’s Sake (FFS): $5,000 towards staging the premiere female-focused film festival in Australia, curating a large selection of long and short form narrative, factual, animation and digital and tech content across demographics. Locations: Sydney CBD, Parramatta, Marrickville, Redfern and Surry Hills.
  • Lebanese Film Festival: $5,000 to the Lebanese Film Festival Association Inc towards staging Australia’s primary festival celebrating Lebanese cinema in the country. The event is focused on showcasing the work of Lebanese filmmakers across the world, and of non-Lebanese filmmakers who have directed or produced films focused on Lebanon. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney, Hunter, South Eastern, with out of NSW events in Canberra and Adelaide.
  • Perfect Light Film Festival: $5,000 to Film Festivals Australia towards staging the free annual short film festival Perfect Light Film Festival (PLFF) in Broken Hill in December. Location: Broken Hill/Far West.
  • Persian International Film Festival: $5,000 towards staging the independent, community-based cultural event that showcases the best in contemporary screen culture from Persian-speaking worlds, its diaspora and Persian-Australian filmmakers. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney, Northern NSW.
  • Queer Screen: 25 Years of My Queer Career: $10,000 to fund a retrospective My Queer Career Gala event as part of Queer Screens’ 25th anniversary celebration. My Queer Career is the longest running competition for queer film makers or queer storytellers in Australia, spanning from 1990’s to 2018. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney.
  • Real Film Festival: $5,000 in funding to Screen Hunter to strengthen audience engagement through marketing, local business engagement and audience participation for the Real Film Festival, a three-day annual festival that fosters and showcases the art of storytelling real events through film. Location: Hunter.

Industry Development Fund

  • Australian Directors Guild: $90,000 over three years to allow for professional development activity, events and awards within NSW. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney, Northern NSW.
  • Australian Film Institute / AACTA: $10,000 towards holding a series of industry events including a range of seminars, masterclasses and Q&A events featuring Australians working in the film and television industries. These events connect emerging and established practitioners with the nation’s top screen performers, practitioners and productions.
  • Australian Guild of Screen Composers: $5,000 towards the staging of a new free event called SMASSH (Screen Music Awards Symposium & Student Happening), which will showcase music written and produced by students for films, television and games and act as a bridge between students and the industry. Locations: Sydney Metro, Hunter.
  • CuriousWorks: $20,000 to fund the Breakthrough! Development Program to introduce six new writers and storytellers from underprivileged and CaLD backgrounds. Through the program the six writers will be discovered, nurtured, trained and connected to make high quality screen projects and be the heart of the decision making on their own projects in the future. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney.
  • Freshflix Pty Ltd: $5,000 towards the staging of the second annual Freshflix Emerging Filmmakers’ Conference in 2018, which will offer filmmaker talks, industry insights and industry speed dating and workshops, culminating in the Freshflix Short Film Festival. Location: Sydney Metro.
  • Northern Rivers Screenworks Inc: $30,000 in funding over two years to enable two Northern NSW emerging and early-career directors to receive bespoke career development opportunities through the Screenworks’ Director Pathways Program for professional development in partnership with the Australian Directors Guild (ADG). Locations: Far West, Mid North Coast, North Western, Northern NSW and Richmond-Tweed.
  • Screen Producers Australia: $30,000 over three years to allow for the organisation’s Industry Development Programme 2017/2018, covering its Business Essentials course, Produce Perfect intensive skills development program, Ones To Watch mentor program and Screen Forever 2017 media and entertainment professionals conference. Locations: Sydney Metro, Western Sydney, Central Coast, Far West, Hunter, North Western and not in NSW locations.
  • South East Arts (NSW) Inc: $18,500 to enable the organisation’s Screen Industry Development Strategy of professional development activities to facilitate a self-managing network of screen practitioners, increase capacity for professional production in the region, support young screen content creators and broaden audiences for regional stories. The funding will also be used for the SEA Screen Summit (program of professional development forums) and Clinics (one on one feedback sessions with experienced professionals) focused on future trends and market opportunities. Locations: South Eastern NSW.
  • The Women’s Consortium: $25,000 to fund ‘Project Accelerator’, a female directed project acceleration program, open to mid-career women who have at least one long form professional credit. The project funds four projects per round, with recipients receiving six months of concentrated mentoring from the Women’s Consortium with advice on every aspect of production from development, to production ready script requirements, financing, marketing, legals and distribution. Locations: Sydney Metro and Mid North Coast.
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Published: 5 October 2017