Back Row: Writer Stuart Page, producer Jo Werner
Front row: director Ana Kokkinos, performers Shareena Clanton & Nadine Garner.
Actors, Writers, Directors and Producers gathered in 6 capital cities yesterday to launch a “Make It Australian” campaign in a bid to keep Australian stories on screen.
Members of the Australian Directors’ Guild, Australian Writers’Guild, Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance and Screen Producers Australia met at gatherings in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Hobart.
They included such faces as Gillian Armstrong, Marta Dusseldorp, Tina Bursill, Ian Meadows, Debra Lawrance, Sarah Snook, John Edwards, Shareena Clanton, Joanne Werner, Ana Kokkinos, Scott Hicks, Simon Burke and more.
The campaign follows Free to Air commercial networks seeking to drop Children’s Television production, as well as the rise of streaming platforms without any Australian quotas.
Nadine Garner addressed a huge gathering at ACMI in Melbourne.
“The Make It Australian campaign is a really important fight that we’ve had in Australia for many decades,” she said. “It’s not a new fight. We’re rejuvenating and rethinking because it’s about putting Australian content in the forefront to make sure that Australian voices and Australian stories are heard and told across all platforms, not just free to air television, and that we need to make sure that information gets out to our communities and our politicians and keep discussing these really, really important and relevant issues.
“I’m passionate about it and I feel that there’s an ongoing fight and we have to keep fighting the fight for the sake of Australian. We’re a small industry and we have to keep fighting because we have American and British content that is so brilliant because it’s so well-funded and we have to find our niche inside that, and we can and we will, but we have to keep convincing governments that it’s worth funding that and that’s why we’re here today. We have the skill set in Australia to make television at the highest international level and we should be proud of that and we should be doing more of it.”
The four organisations have combined forces to fight for:
● reform of local content rules to include the burgeoning digital platforms, including streaming
video on demand;
● the restoration of funding to public broadcasters and Screen Australia, who commission a
significant proportion of local comedy and drama; and
● the modernisation of our production incentives to make them globally competitive at all