Top row: Aven Yap, Helen Morrsion. Centre row: Ben Hackworth, Dean Gibson. Bottom Row: Krissy Kneen, Anthony Mullins. 

Screen Queensland’s RIDE (Respect, Inclusion, Diversity and Equality) Feature Film Fund is now a rolling fund, with the agency putting a call out today for pitches from creatives from under-represented groups.

The initiative is a partnership between SQ, SBS, Madman Entertainment, The Post Lounge and Media Super, and guarantees a production budget of $1.5 million for one feature film to be created each year for the next three years.

Creatives can apply to RIDE at anytime, with projects selected to move into further intensive development and join the RIDE Slate, from which the partners will then select films for production.

Writers, directors and producers with between 0-2 feature film credits can apply for RIDE as an individual or in a team. For this program, under-represented groups are recognised as differences in gender, age, Aboriginal identity, CaLD, LGBTQI+, regional and remote, and socio-economic status.

As part of a $3.3 million COVID support package, Screen Queensland has made available increased development investment in order to swiftly re-open RIDE.

“We know that diverse voices and stories that truly reflect our population connect with audiences both here and abroad. And we want to tap into this commercial opportunity with new urgency as this demand will only grow as restrictions ease from COVID-19 and audiences seek new screen content,” said SQ CEO Kylie Munnich said.

“Along with our valued RIDE partners, we are keen to tap into the strong global market for fresh feature film ideas that are entertaining, push boundaries and surprise audiences in cinemas and on streaming platforms.”

Current projects being developed via the RIDE Slate are:

· Piano Mums – A Chinese-Australian tiger mother pushes her teenage son to succeed at a pivotal piano audition by Queensland writer Aven Yap. Benjamin Law is a script consultant.
· Soldier – A story of forbidden love between Australian soldiers during wartime; created by a Queensland team including producer/writer Anthony Mullins, writer Krissy Kneen, and director Ben Hackworth.
· Welcome to Country – An ambitious, naive bureaucrat is sent to shut down a beleaguered remote Aboriginal community, but he finds there is more to life than politics; from a Queensland team consisting of producer/writer Helen Morrison and director/writer Dean Gibson. Tony Briggs is a script consultant.

More info on RIDE is here.

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