With an unprecedented level of production going on around the country, local producers are reporting increased difficulty in crewing and are facing increased crew rates.
That’s according to a recent survey by Screen Producers Australia (SPA), conducted via its membership to paint a picture of the challenges that have resulted via of the surge of in-bound productions flocking to Australia.
Producers reported crew shortages Australia-wide, given the number of concurrent shoots and international productions.
Of the 41 respondents, 80 per cent reported crewing difficulties, with two-thirds also reporting this was the most significant challenge facing their business in the short-term.
Of those surveyed, 95 per cent reported increased costs. The average increase was 24 per cent, with some costs increasing up to 75 per cent.
The roles with the highest reported shortages include 1st ADs, line producers, production accountants, art directors, camera operators, gaffers, grips, DOPs and VFX artists.
Some of these shortages likely existed before the boom and have only been exacerbated. For instance, Moneypenny CEO Jane Corden has warned that there are not enough line producers, production accountants and accounts assistants to service the industry since early 2019.
SPA has suggested the results highlight an opportunity for both government and screen agencies to assist in expanding training and skills development capabilities, including on-set training.
“While the current employment conditions are a boon for jobs and our world-class crews, there is a tangible flow-on effect into local productions and the local production businesses who are striving to maintain sustainability in challenging economic conditions,” said SPA CEO Matthew Deaner.
“These are the businesses who will revert to being the main source of employment for crews once the tide of international productions returns to normal levels.”
Roles where producers have reported shortages include:
- 1st assistant director
- 2nd assistant director
- Archive researcher
- Art department
- Assistant editor
- Camera operators
- Costume department
- Line producer
- Location manager
- Post director
- Production accountant
- Production designer
- Production office
- Safety officer
- Script editor
- Script supervisor
- Series producer
- Shooter director
- Sound recordist
- Supervising art director