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19 articles


Exec changes at BBC Worldwide

2 July 2015 7:41 PM, PDT

Tim Christlieb has been named as the new Director of Channels for BBC Worldwide (Bbcww) Australia and New Zealand.

His appointment follows a review which abolished the role of Director of Television Anz held by Natalie Edgar, who is leaving the company in mid-August.

Christlieb will lead programming and acquisitions across Bbcww's portfolio of locally managed channels: BBC First, BBC UKTV, BBC Knowledge, BBC CBeebies in Australia; and BBC UKTV and BBC Knowledge in New Zealand. He joined in May 2012 as Head of Programming and Production and became Head of Channels in October 2013. Previously he was Bbcww's London-based. Head of Scheduling for the Nordics and Italy for two years. Before that he was Head of UK Channel Operations at MTV Networks and Deputy Head of Entertainment at Gateway Broadcast Services.

Edgar joined Bbcww in January 2014 after serving as Deputy Controller of ABC1 for six years. As. Director of Television Anz »

- Staff writer

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Last call for concepts for TV dramas

2 July 2015 5:03 PM, PDT

Werner Film Productions. Joanna Werner is appealing to creatives to pitch their ideas for original TV dramas for the Screen Australia-funded development initiative The Story Lab.

Werner is looking for two projects for workshops designed to enable writers to take concepts to a pitch bible and first draft pilot episode script.

The deadline for Call for Concepts is July 10. Applicants are asked to submit a 1-3 page outline via Wfp.s website.

Funded by Screen Australia.s Enterprise Stories, the lab is intended to cultivate innovative Australian stories with global audience appeal.

Up to 20 writers as well as five script editors and five creative producers will participate in five intensive .Us writers. room- style workshops throughout the year.

.We.ve had a terrific response to Call for Concepts, across a broad cross-section of genres, but there is a week left for submissions,. Werner tells If.

The first workshop was held in June for House Games, »

- Don Groves

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Snowtown duo reunites for historical epic

2 July 2015 3:26 PM, PDT

Snowtown director Justin Kurzel and screenwriter Shaun Grant are collaborating on an Australian bushranger feature.

Grant is writing True History of the Kelly Gang, adapted from the Peter Carey novel, a co-production between Porchlight.s Liz Watts and the UK's Daybreak Pictures.

The novel is seen through Kelly.s eyes, scribbling his narrative on scraps of paper in semi-literate but descriptive prose as he fled from the police.

To his pursuers, Kelly was a monstrous criminal, a thief and a murderer. To many ordinary Australians, the bushranger was a hero, defying the authority of the English to control their lives.

Joe Penhall was listed as the writer when the project received development funding from Screen Australia.

Heath Ledger played the bushranger in Gregor Jordan's Ned Kelly in 2003 and Mick Jagger starred in Tony Richardson's Ned Kelly in 1970. The first screen version was The Story of the Kelly Gang in »

- Don Groves

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If is looking for a new editor

1 July 2015 10:43 PM, PDT

The Intermedia Group has an outstanding opportunity for a talented editor to work on the leading magazine for the Australian film, television and media sector.

As editor, you will be required to shape the direction and generate the content of the magazine and also contribute regularly to a website and e-newsletter read by senior decision makers within the industry.

This is a trade publication . so those looking to cover the Kardashians or speculate on the state of Lara Bingle.s marital status need not apply. This role concerns the inner workings of the Australian screen sector and is read by industry professionals around the world.

The role

As editor, you will play a key role in developing the editorial strategy to further strengthen the title's leading position within the marketplace. Content generation for additional projects and events will also be required.

To be successful, you will already have solid editorial »

- Staff Writer

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Vale Chris Thomson

1 July 2015 7:41 PM, PDT

Chris Thomson, one of the founding directors of the burgeoning New Zealand film and television industry in the 1960s, died in Sydney after a sudden stroke on July 1. He was 70.

Born in Wellington, Thomson directed the first ever drama to air on New Zealand television, A Game for 5 Players, followed by the series The Alpha Plan.

After relocating to the UK in the early 1970s, he worked as a director with the BBC before returning to Australia to direct acclaimed miniseries 1915, Waterfront and The Last Bastion and the feature films The Empty Beach, The Perfectionist and The Delinquents.

He also directed the first ever episode of A Country Practice in 1981. During his long career he worked closely with some of Australia.s finest performers and crew including Jack Thompson, Jacki Weaver, Bryan Brown, Greta Scacchi, Bill Hunter, Sigrid Thornton, Kylie Minogue, Ray Barrett, Andrew McFarlane, Bill Kerr, Lorraine Bayly, Noni Hazlehurst, »

- Matt Day

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Australian films in the Us B.O. scorecard

1 July 2015 7:12 PM, PDT

Twelve Australian films have been released in Us cinemas this year led by Mad Max: Fury Road, which has raked in $147.5 million but is fast running out of gas and may finish with a bit more than $150 million.

That brings the action-adventure.s global total to $US357 million, including South Korea.s $30 million, the UK.s $27.1 million, France.s $16.7 million, Russia.s $13.7 million, Brazil.s $10.9 million, Germany.s $9.5 million, Mexico.s $8 million and Japan.s $6 million in 10 days.

In Australia George Miller.s film has grossed a fine $21.4 million. Village Roadshow Pictures has declined to comment on the prospects of a sequel.

The Water Diviner conjured up nearly $4.2 million in the Us, part of a worldwide haul of $35.4 million, which includes Turkey.s $6.1 million, Spain.s $2.7 million, the UK.s skimpy. $2 million and Italy.s $1.2 million..

Russell Crowe's drama misfired in France and Germany, earning $620,000 and $308,000 respectively, according to Rentrak. »

- Don Groves

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Sq raises funding ceilings

1 July 2015 3:21 PM, PDT

Screen Queensland is increasing the cap on production investments from $650,000 to $750,000 plus a $100,000 .top up grant. for eligible long-form and large scale productions.

As part of a package of revised funding structures, programs and incentives introduced on July 1, the agency is raising the production grant ceiling from $50,000 to $100,000 for all projects budgeted up to $1 million.

For productions budgeted above $1 million, the ceiling goes up to $200,000 on a discretionary basis.

A new innovation fund will support inventive ways of telling stories and reaching audiences outside the current mould. A one-off grant of up to $10,000 is available for conceptual and early stage development of projects. In the absence of market interest, Sq will focus on the strength of the audience, marketing and finance plans. Teams must include a director, writer and producer.

These changes are aimed at increasing production in Queensland and to capitalise on new opportunities for the ways that screen content is made and distributed. »

- Staff writer

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Shaun Brown and Ray Martin to review Q&A

30 June 2015 11:14 PM, PDT

The independent review of the controversial Q&A program broadcast on June 22 commissioned by the ABC will be undertaken by Ray Martin and former Sbs MD Shaun Brown.

The ABC board said Q&A executive producer Peter McEvoy "acknowledges the failure of editorial process and judgment around this episode" and has been given a formal warning under misconduct provisions of the ABC's industrial agreement.

The review will look at the full range of Q&A programs during. the first half of 2015 and take into account the key editorial decisions that impact on the delivery of the program including:

. audience selection; . panel selection and make-up . subject selection . social media strategy, including on-air tweets

Their report will be published later in the year.

The ABC board said today it agrees with ABC management.s statement last week that the decision to allow Zaky Mallah, the former terrorism suspect and convicted. criminal, to »

- Staff writer

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ABC docu takes the Back Roads

30 June 2015 9:31 PM, PDT

The ABC.s new regional division and the TV news department are shooting a documentary series on residents in some of Australia.s smallest communities.

Due to air later this year, the 8-part Back Roads will be presented by Heather Ewart, who last year fronted A Country Road . The Nationals. That 3-part series chronicled the history of the National Party featuring larger-than-life characters Bob Katter, Clive Palmer, Pauline Hanson and Barnaby Joyce as well as old-timers such as Doug Anthony and Malcolm Fraser. Brigid Donovan, a long-time producer with Australian Story, is working on the project with teams from ABC regional radio, online and mobile. Back Roads will ask why people have chosen the coastal or country life and look at the events and celebrations that bind them. The new ABC Regional brings together program makers, producers and reporters from across the country to provide a unified service. There are »

- Don Groves

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Screen Australia introduces new guidelines

30 June 2015 3:46 PM, PDT

Screen Australia has revamped the guidelines for five funding programs to provide more flexibility and clarity and broadened eligibility to boost the opportunities to access support. CEO. Graeme Mason said, .We want the refreshed guidelines to open up the opportunity for practitioners to collaborate across platforms and increase their access to funding via alternative programs. We are responding to the creative needs of the screen industry, adapting to cast the net wider and recognising the different approaches to storytelling enabling the best ideas to rise to the surface.. Effective from today, the revamped guidelines apply to:

. Story Development

The changes include providing development funding for interactive and online drama series; including high-end TV drama in the same fund; adding a Wildcard portal to allow anyone, anytime, to pitch a feature film idea;. capping development funding to $100,000 on feature film projects; and requiring EPs to have two producer credits.

. Talent Development »

- Don Groves

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Aussies and Kiwis invited to join AMPAS

30 June 2015 3:39 PM, PDT

Four Australians and three Kiwis have been invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

A record 322 screen practitioners from the Us and around the world have been invited to join the organisation. The previous high was 276 in 2013.

The Down Under contingent comprises visual effects wizards Tim Crosbie and Daniel Barrett, producers Bruna Papandrea and Rebecca Yeldham, sound mixers David Lee and Jason Canovas and writer-director Niki Caro.

Despite the Academy.s efforts to diversify its membership, out of the 25 actors invited to join only seven are women.

Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs said, .It.s gratifying to acknowledge the extraordinary range of talent in our industry. This year, our branches have recognized a more diverse and inclusive list of filmmakers and artists than ever before, and we look forward to adding their creativity, ideas and experience to our organization..

This year Crosbie was nominated for an »

- Don Groves

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Aussies invited to join AMPAS

30 June 2015 3:39 PM, PDT

Three Australians and one Kiwi have been invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

A record 322 screen practitioners from the Us and around the world have been invited to join the organisation. The previous high was 276 in 2013.

The Down Under contingent comprises visual effects wizard Tim Crosbie, producers Bruna Papandrea and Rebecca Yeldham and writer-director Niki Caro.

Despite the Academy.s efforts to diversify its membership, out of the 25 actors invited to join only seven are women.

Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs said, .It.s gratifying to acknowledge the extraordinary range of talent in our industry. This year, our branches have recognized a more diverse and inclusive list of filmmakers and artists than ever before, and we look forward to adding their creativity, ideas and experience to our organization..

This year Crosbie was nominated for an Oscar for best achievement in visual effects for X-Men: Days of Future Past, »

- Don Groves

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Busan International Film Festival programmer to visit

29 June 2015 9:56 PM, PDT

Screen Australia will host a visit by Dosin Pak, programmer for the Busan International Film Festival, in July.

Dosin will view new Australian films for preselection for the festival, which runs from October 1-10, and make recommendations about narrative feature films for the World Cinema, Flash Forward and Midnight Passion sections. World Cinema showcases feature films from non-Asian filmmakers around the world, including those from established filmmakers. Flash Forward is for new narrative features from non-Asian filmmakers reflecting bold vision and creativity.. Midnight Passion screens horror, sci-fi and cult films. Last year Kill Me Three Times screened in World Cinema, The Mule featured in Flash Forward, Paper Planes in Wide Angle and Wyrmwood in Midnight Passion. Busan.s requirements stipulate films should not have been completed before last October and must be 60 minutes or more. Filmmakers with eligible features should contact Dale Fairbairn at Screen Australia via email: dale.fairbairn@screenaustralia. »

- Staff writer

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Five drama commissions from ABC

29 June 2015 9:36 PM, PDT

ABC TV has confirmed new series of. Janet King, Rake, Jack Irish, The Code and The Doctor Blake Mysteries.

Marta Dusseldorp will star in the second series of Janet King, Richard Roxburgh returns as Cleaver Greene in the fourth series of Rake and Guy Pearce stars in a six-part series based on the crime novels by Peter Temple in Jack Irish: The Series, a spin-off of the three telepics. Craig McLachlan returns as. Dr Lucien Blake in the fourth outing of The Doctor Blake Mysteries, together with Nadine Garner as his housekeeper Jean Beazley. Dan Spielman and Ashley Zuckerman are back for the second season of The Code. ABC Head of Fiction Carole Sklan said: .ABC TV is very happy to be able to bring back this collection of hugely entertaining, favourite dramas. They feature such a wonderful, eclectic mix of indelible characters.. Head of Programming Brendan Dahill said: .This »

- Don Groves

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Awards for Prison Song and God Squad

29 June 2015 7:58 PM, PDT

Documentary musical Prison Songs and animated TV series God Squad each won three trophies at the 27th annual Wa Screen Awards.

Writer-director Jeffory Asselin.s Pinch was the surprise winner of. best feature film . drama, edging out Kill Me Three Times,. Paper Planes and The Reckoning.

The film revolves around a light-fingered teen who attempts to rip off a major drug syndicate to pay for his mother's life saving surgery.

Producer/director Lauren Brunswick received the $5,000 McKenna Hampton Young Filmmaker of the Year award.

Presented by Fti, the awards were handed out at the Heath Ledger Theatre on June 29, hosted by comedian Joel Creasey.

The Beyond West-produced Prison Songs by Kelrick Martin and Harry Bardwell took the prizes for best TV production . factual, best long form editing and sound. Martin also won the award for best long form direction..

God Squad by Troy Zafer and Nicholas Kempt was named best animation, »

- Don Groves

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Director attached to Love Child

29 June 2015 7:31 PM, PDT

The Australian Directors Guild, Screen Australia and Playmaker Media today announced Julietta Boscolo as the director.s attachment to Geoff Bennett on the Nine Network's Love Child, now in production.

A Vca graduate, Boscolo started directing several years ago. with a number of short films including Sam.s Gold, which won the Adg Best Direction in a Short Film last year and was invited to more than a dozen national and international festivals.

She was one of nine filmmakers worldwide selected for the Binger Filmlab Directors Lab in Amsterdam in 2013. Julietta said, .I'm absolutely thrilled and honoured to be chosen for this attachment on such a successful production. This is perfect timing and a perfect opportunity to move into directing for television.. Screen Australia.s Senior Development Executive Nerida Moore said, .Screen Australia recognises the importance of ongoing talent development opportunities, and is proud to support this through the Director.s Attachment Scheme. »

- Staff writer

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Reissues for Oz films and TV titles

28 June 2015 9:40 PM, PDT

Screen Australia.s decision to hand back the rights of 1,200 titles to the producers, effective July 1, will result in the reissue on DVD and pay TV of some films and TV productions that have long been out of circulation.

While few if any producers expect to get rich from regaining the rights, the move has been widely welcomed.

The agency has clarified that the concession applies to all projects, including features, miniseries, series and telemovies funded by the Film Finance Corp. and during Screen Australia.s first year, that were released or broadcast in the seven years prior to December 31 2008.

The handover has been brought forward by six months. All rights minus a 1% copyright fee revert back to producers.

Producer Matt Carroll is looking forward to exploring the potential of new revenue sources for Passion, his 1993 drama about composer Percy Grainger, which starred Richard Roxburgh. Beyond Films handled the film directed by Peter Duncan. »

- Don Groves

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Reissues likely for Oz films and TV titles

28 June 2015 9:40 PM, PDT

Screen Australia.s decision to hand back the rights of 1,200 titles to the producers, effective July 1, is likely to result in the reissue on DVD and pay TV of some films and TV productions that have long been out of circulation.

While few if any producers expect to get rich from regaining the rights, the move has been widely welcomed.

The agency has clarified that the concession applies to all projects, including features, miniseries, tv series and telemovies funded by the Film Finance Corp. and during Screen Australia.s first year, that were released or broadcast in the seven years prior to December 31 2008.

The handover has been brought forward by six months.

Producer Matt Carroll is looking forward to exploring the potential of new revenue sources for Passion, his 1993 drama about composer Percy Grainger, which starred Richard Roxburgh. Beyond Films handled the film directed by Peter Duncan.

The topic may »

- Don Groves

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Foxtel revamps management

28 June 2015 5:58 PM, PDT

Foxtel is reshuffling its senior management to centralise the process of negotiating deals with film and TV suppliers and to reflect the doubling of investment in Australian scripted, factual, lifestyle and entertainment programming by 2018 .

Effective July 1, the new structure will streamline the acquisitions of all content for Foxtel.s channels and Presto.

As part of the reorganisation, Duane Hatherly will continue to lead the team involved in developing new shows and formats as Foxtel Networks Director of Production.

Hatherly was Director of Production and Head of LifeStyle Channels. The latter area will now be overseen by Hannah Barnes, General Manager LifeStyle Channels.

Foxtel Networks Director of Programming and Channels Ross Crowley is being promoted to the new role of Director of Content Strategy and Programming.

He will work with Tony Pollitt, the former Commercial Director, who becomes General Manager Business Affairs . Content and Networks,. as part of the business unit »

- Don Groves

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