Los Angeles-based Australians in Film (AiF), the preeminent organization for expatriate Australians in the entertainment industry, announced today that applications and scholarship guidelines for the first Australians in Film Heath Ledger Scholarship are now available online at www.australiansinfilm.org.
The scholarship will be awarded to an emerging Australian actor, for up to USD$10,000 plus a return airfare from Australia, to pursue their career in the United States. Applications will be accepted from October 1st – November 28th, 2008 with the first beneficiary to be announced by mid February 2009, stated AiF president Susie Dobson.
The annual Australians in Film Heath Ledger Scholarship is named in honor of Ledger who was an Ambassador for AiF before his untimely death in January 2008 and has the support of the Heath Ledger family.
“We as a family are pleased with the establishment and progress of the AIF scholarship award named in honor of our much loved and generous son, Heath,” said Kim Ledger, father of Heath Ledger. “As a result of this scholarship, a talented Australian actor will gain valuable assistance to support their personal goals, and an opportunity for recognition in the very tough US film industry.”
Film director (Ned Kelly, The Informers) Gregor Jordan will join the five person judging panel comprising of top entertainment industry individuals. Further judges and a list of benefactors will be announced in December 2008.
“Broke Aussie actors in LA form a tradition that goes all the way back to Errol Flynn,” said Jordan. “Heath was definitely part of that tradition and this scholarship is something he would have been proud to have his name associated with.”
About Australians in Film
Founded in May 2001, to celebrate and support the work of Australian film and TV makers, Los Angeles based Australians in Film has held nearly 100 screenings, premieres and special events including the annual AiF Breakthrough Awards and currently has over 500 members. Australians in Film Ambassadors include Australian Oscar-winning actors Cate Blanchett, Russell Crowe and Geoffrey Rush, Oscar-winning director Mel Gibson and 30 other internationally known stars and film-makers including Hugh Jackman, Fred Schepisi and Naomi Watts.
Australians in Film is proud to be endorsed by the Australian Government and to receive the support of Gold sponsors Avid,
MacCorkindale Alonso & Holton, Tourism Australia, Qantas and Stacey Testro International, Silver sponsors AUSFILM, Austrade, Cooronbong Vodka, Stage & Screen Travel Services and Tourism Queensland. Bronze sponsors are Loeb & Loeb, Penfolds and Rosemount Estate. AiF’s media partner is Getty Images. www.australiansinfilm.org