Recipients of $45,000 project fund grants announced

ScreenACT, the ACT Office of Film, Television and Digital media, is pleased to announce the recipients of the ScreenACT 2008 Project Fund grants who will each receive up to $10,000 to develop or complete film, TV, and digital media projects in the ACT.
The five recipients were chosen from 33 high quality applicants by an independent panel which included by Mr Kim Lewis, a professional film consultant based in Sydney, who has a career in the film industry spanning more than 30 years.
‘I am delighted to see this important initiative helping to expand the diversity of talent in the film and digital media industry in the ACT’, Chief Minister Jon Stanhope said. ‘I congratulate the grant recipients who highlight the broad range of topics and styles of project that local producers are willing to take on.’
The winners were a diverse mixture: a dark and compelling local feature film; a polished TV science documentary; a video game about racing office chairs; an ambitious science fiction TV series; and a look into the world of the international comic book market.
ScreenACT manager Brendan Walsh said ‘we were overwhelmed with the submissions we received to this year’s fund. With over 30 applications there were a lot of great projects on offer and it was a really tough job for the assessment committee to choose just five recipients’. He went on to say that while the selection panel would have liked to fund more projects, it was very happy with the quality and diversity of the grant recipients.
 The 5 recipients of the ScreenACT 2008 Project Fund are:
 1. The Dinner Party (Canary Yellow Productions) a locally produced feature film with most filming and an initial edit completed. ScreenACT will be funding some important re-recording of dialogue. This project will prove to be compelling and controversial, and has an excellent prospect of cinema release.
 2. Shock and How to Survive It (Bearcage Productions). An extremely polished science documentary using Canberra talent, this project is already attracting a good deal of interest and shows a lot of potential for further funding and international broadcast.
 3. Extreme Office Chair Racing (Leanne Bartlett). This video game, from emerging games designer Leanne Bartlett, involves racing an office chair through an office and around obstacles. The grant is for programming time to add some functionality and to finish the game. The finished product will be submitted to ‘casual’ gaming platforms such as Microsoft Xbox 360 Live – Arcade, where the game can be made available as a download for a fee.
 4. Resistance (That’s A Wrap Productions). An ambitious science fiction TV series planned for Canberra. The concept is well underway, and already showing a good deal of market interest. The series will star actors Nicholas Hope (Bad Boy Bubby) and Belinda McClory (Switch from The Matrix); who recently came to Canberra to record voice-overs for the pilot episode. The ScreenACT funds will be used for production to film one of the scenes from the pilot episode script. Resistance is ambitious and bold, and has great potential both as a series, and for the ACT.
 5. A Comic Affair (Liz Weir). This is a youth-focused documentary on the comic book industry and is produced by local emerging filmmaker Liz Weir. Although in its early stages, it is well-conceived and is already well underway with filming. They plan to film at comic conventions in the US this year and then later back in Australia as they feature young comic book talent facing the challenges of entering and surviving in the business and breaking into the US market.
 ScreenACT operates under the auspices of The Canberra Business Council, and is supported by the ACT Government. With a taskforce of local industry representatives, it focuses on the development and promotion of the local industry as well as offering location advice and assistance to visiting productions.      

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