WA Government puts further $16 million towards regional film fund

‘H is for Happiness’, previously supported by the WARFF. 

The Western Australian Government has topped up the state’s regional film fund with a further $16 million over the next four years.

Screenwest will administer the WA Screen Fund (previously the Western Australian Regional Film Fund, or WARFF), designed to encourage production in regional areas, boost local economies and drive tourism.

The funds come via the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.

First launched in 2016, the WARFF has helped to drive an upswing in production in WA in recent years.

Among the projects the fund has backed are both seasons of Bunya Productions’ ABC drama Mystery Road, Komixx Entertainment’s children’s series Itch, docuseries Aussie Gold Hunters, as well as films such as Gregor Jordan’s Dirt Music, Simon Baker’s Breath, Jeremy Sims’ Rams, Owen Trevor’s Go!, Ben Elton’s Three Summers and John Sheedy’s H is for Happiness. 

The new fund will be expanded to cover post-production and visual effects, flagged as a development opportunity by Screenwest.

Screenwest CEO Willie Rowe said: “The evolution of the Western Australian Screen Fund will provide the WA screen industry with stability at this time and a fantastic opportunity to grow and develop into the future. We also acknowledge and appreciate the Western Australian State Government’s additional measures to support the arts and cultural industries in Western Australia. This is a vital sector within the state, which delivers significant economic and community benefit.”

WA Culture and Arts Minster David Templeman said: “You only have to look at how many productions we’ve been involved with in recent years – such as Rams, Breath, H is for Happiness, Dirt Music, Mystery Road and Aussie Gold Hunters – to realise just how vibrant our film and TV industry is.

“These productions not only show off our state and act as a drawcard for visitors, but they also show the depth of talent that is available here in WA in the ranks of our creative industries.”