Create NSW puts $500K towards festivals, events and initiatives

The Lebanese Film Festival 2019. (Photo: Charbel Khabbaz/Khabbaz Photography) 

The NSW government today announced $500K in funding to deliver professional development programs for screen professionals and support film festivals and events.

Under the 2019-20 Industry Development Program, administered through Create NSW, $359,000 has been put towards 11 events including seminars and professional development activities  throughout the state.

And through the Audience Development Program $147,000 will support 15 public screenings, festivals and tours across 61 venues.

“These grants will further develop the incredible talent in our local screen industry by offering opportunities for professional development as well as delivering world-class festivals, talks and events to audiences across the State,” said Minister for the Arts Don Harwin.

“I’m thrilled to announce support for Western Sydney with the Lebanese Film Festival returning to Bankstown and Flickerfest Regional Tour returning to Riverside Theatres in Parramatta before it goes on tour state-wide.

“Regionally we have outstanding film festivals from the Hunter to Broken Hill, along with industry events right across the Northern Rivers to the South East. There is a lot on offer for both audiences and practitioners to upskill or participate in screen culture.”

The full list of supported recipients:

Industry Development Fund

Antenna Documentary Film Festival, Screen Culture Association Inc.: Antenna Documentary Forum: $20,000 (three years of $20,000 multi-year funding) to fund Antenna Documentary Forum, Antenna Documentary Film Festival’s industry program. The Forum is a curated program of discussions, masterclasses, documentary workshops and networking events offering an independent and inspiring meeting place for documentary professionals to network, learn and develop their filmmaking practices and industry knowledge on local and international levels.

Australian International Documentary Conference: $20,000 (three years of $20,000 multi-year funding) to fund the Australian International Documentary Conference (AIDC), Australia’s largest and premier event for documentary, factual and unscripted storytellers within the Asia-Pacific region (1 March 2020). Spread across four days, the event features a world-class international marketplace, competitive pitching forum and over fifty conference sessions and screenings.

Australian Writers’ Guild, Deepening Diversity: $10,000 to fund a program of events run by Australian Writers’ Guild. These targeted events will be built on strategic partnerships designed for NSW diverse, Western Sydney-based and regional NSW-based emerging screenwriters. Recognising the importance of nurturing and promoting talent from a diverse range of screenwriters, the Australian Writers’ Guild aims to build on and deepen the successful work it has undertaken in diversity with this program.

Bus Stop Films, Online Toolkit: $10,000 to produce an online toolkit that will package 10 years of Bus Stop Films’ inclusive filmmaking model and make its process accessible to more filmmakers. The toolkit will explore Bus Stop Films processes to create a resource that filmmakers can use to learn about inclusive filmmaking and implement the model into their own artist practice.

Curious Works Incorporated, Curious Ensemble of Emerging Artists: $20,000 to bring together emerging Western Sydney-based new media and screen artists to consolidate the worlds of traditional video media with cutting edge emerging art forms, such as mobile and mixed reality works, as an ongoing, creative collective. Further professional development will be encouraged through engagement with established artists facilitating workshops, one-off master classes with industry veterans, and an online knowledge resource.

Information & Cultural Exchange (I.C.E.), Screen Cultures: $100,000 in 2019, $90,000 in 2020 and $80,000 in 2021 (three years of multi-year funding) to deliver Screen Cultures, a program that aims to change the faces, voices and stories seen in Australian media to better reflect the cultural diversity and reality of the country. Screen Cultures’ aim is to deepen engagement with Western Sydney screen practitioners, producers, audience and the screen industry via an ambitious, strategically targeted program.

Northern Rivers Screenworks Inc., Capacity Builder: $150,000 (three years of $150,000 multi-year funding) to support Screenworks to deliver a diverse program of events and workshops, focusing on skills development and industry connections in regional NSW. Screenworks will also continue its Career Pathways programs. Inside the Writers Room, Regional Producer Elevator Program, and Director Pathways Program will increase the skills of and connect talented emerging professionals to industry opportunities and fast-track regional careers.

South East Arts, SEA Screen: $3,000 to develop a strategic plan for the next three years for the south east region of NSW. South East Arts will work strategically with the board to develop a strategy to deliver a program of professional development activities and initiatives that aims to support screen industry development in south east NSW.

Screen Producers Australia (SPA), Industry Programs: $10,000 to provide screen industry programs and projects, including Screen Industry Code of Conduct online training, Screen Forever (a major annual screen industry event), Ones To Watch at Screen Forever, MEDIA RING Breakfast at Screen Forever and Crèche at Screen Forever.

The Compton School, The Greenlight Network: $6,000 to enable The Greenlight Network, a community network where members can pitch their creative projects and give and receive feedback from their peers. The network concept has been developed by The Compton School and draws on extensive research into the Hollywood ‘greenlight’ system. The Compton School is partnering with Information & Cultural Exchange (I.C.E.) and Women in Film and Television (WIFT) to pilot the network. Two workshops will be conducted in September 2019, one in metropolitan Sydney, the other in Western Sydney, leading to a launch event in November 2019.

Screen Hunter, The Real Film Festival: $10,000 to allow The Real Film Festival, the Hunter region’s leading documentary film festival, to deliver an event that offers audiences the newest documentaries and independent short and feature length films from around the globe. The festival program includes professional development opportunities for young and emerging filmmakers from diverse backgrounds to create content, build skills and connect with industry professionals through workshops, activities, film screenings, short film presentation opportunities and community events. In 2019 the festival will build on its success of the past seven years and extend the program with pop-up festivals across the Hunter region.

Audience Development Fund

Armenian Film Festival 2019: $3,000 to stage the Armenian Film Festival 2019 in Sydney (6 – 15 September 2019). The Armenian Film Festival is the only platform of its kind in Australia that provides the opportunity for Australians to learn about the Australian-Armenian community through film.

Flickerfest, 29th International Flickerfest Film Festival: $20,000 (three years of $20,000 multi-year funding) to enable Flickerfest, Australia’s leading Academy® accredited and BAFTA-recognised international short film festival, to hold its annual screen event held over 10 days and nights at Bondi Beach in January (January 2020, 2021 and 2022).

Flickerfest Regional Tour: $20,000 (three years of $20,000 multi-year funding) to enable The Flickerfest International Short Film Festival to undertake an extensive NSW regional tour for three years (2020 – 2022). The tour will visit 21 NSW venues annually including destinations in regional NSW and Western Sydney. The Flickerfest Regional Tour is aimed at developing screen culture audiences across NSW in mainly regional and rural locations and will return to Riverside Theatres in Parramatta.

Freshflix 2020: $5,000 to stage Freshflix, which showcases the best in independent film, with a particular focus on emerging Australian screen practitioners and talent (6 June 2020). The festival leaps beyond the confines of the rigid traditional film festival cinema, enticing audiences with unique venues, live music and visual art, creating new
spaces for screen culture and breaking down the barriers for the broader community to access and celebrate quality work from emerging filmmakers.

Lebanese Film Festival Association, Lebanese Film Festival 2019: $8,000 to support the Lebanese Film Festival, Australia’s primary festival celebrating Lebanese cinema in Australia (23 August – 7 September 2019). The event is focused on showcasing the work of Lebanese filmmakers across the world, including Australian’s of Lebanese descent, and also of non-Lebanese film makers who have directed or produced films focused on Lebanon. The Festival home is Bankstown, with the aim of challenging the perception of Bankstown and south-west Sydney lacking arts and culture, whilst also challenging common perception of the Lebanese community in Australia both in Sydney and regional NSW.

Queer Screen Ltd, Mardi Gras Film Festival 2019 Regional Screenings: $10,000 to support the Mardi Gras Film Festival 2020 Regional Screening project, which aims to continue its established “mini” Mardi Gras Film Festival regional NSW tour, and take in the expanded list of locations pioneered at Mardi Gras Film Festival 2019.
North West Film Festival 2019: $5,000 to support the North West Film Festival, a festival for young people from remote and disadvantaged areas in regional NSW, interested and actively engaged in creative digital and analogue screen media.

Cultural Media Ltd, Palestinian Film Festival 2019: $10,000 to support the Palestinian Film Festival, a cross-cultural social impact initiative dedicated to promoting arts and culture from the Arabic world, in a multicultural Australian context (20 – 27 September 2019).

Perfect Light Film Festival 2019: $5,000 to support the Perfect Light Film Festival (PLFF), a free, annual short film festival held in November in Broken Hill that helps to earmark the region as a film and arts destination (1 – 3 November 2019).

Persian International Film Festival 2019: $10,000 to support the Persian International Film Festival, an independent, community-based cultural event showcasing the best in contemporary screen culture from Persian-speaking communities, its diaspora and Persian-Australian filmmakers. The festival seeks to be a leader in shifting cultural misconceptions, serving as a forum for dialogue between Persian and Australian communities.

Screenwave Australia, Screenwave International Film Festival 2020: $20,000 to support the Coffs Coast’s Screenwave International Film Festival (SWIFF), a 16-day summer festival presenting more than 90 feature films amongst a line-up of premieres, festival guests, industry events, filmmaker talks, and now the Nextwave regional youth film development program (9 – 24 January 2020).

Taiwan Film Festival 2020: $3,000 to support The Taiwan Film Festival, an annual film festival event to provide a professional showcase platform for Taiwanese filmmakers, the Taiwan film industry and culture in NSW. The event will provide local Taiwan residents with the opportunity to enjoy artistic works from their heritage and culture and create an artistic platform to expose and educate Taiwan culture to the broader community (July 2020).

Screen Hunter, The Real Film Festival 2019: $8,000 to support The Real Film Festival, the Hunter region’s leading documentary film festival, offering audiences the newest documentaries and independent short and feature length films from around the globe for the whole community to enjoy (15 November – 5 December 2019). The festival
program includes professional development opportunities for young and emerging film makers from diverse backgrounds to create content.

The Bardic Studio, Wide Angle Film Festival 2019: $10,000 to support the Wide Angle Film Festival (November 2019), an important annual cultural event offering NSW communities the experience of Australian and international award-winning short films, reflecting the lived experience of people with disability. The eleven-month tour extends throughout every state and territory in Australia.

Wurhu Darhuy Foundation, Winda Film Festival 2019: $10,000 to support the Winda Film Festival in its fourth year. The Winda Film Festival is an international Indigenous film festival that includes activities from film screenings to cultural gathering, youth workshop to masterclass, talks and panels (21 – 24 November 2019).