Latest development funding from Screen Australia

Screen Australia has announced almost $750,000 of Story Development funding for nine feature films, 11 television series and two online projects.

The slate includes Kate Miller-Heidke composing for Imogen Banks’ new musical dramedy and a television adaptation of Melanie Cheng’s acclaimed book Australia Day.

Screen Australia’s Head of Development, Nerida Moore said, “We are looking for projects that are distinctive in the market, have a very specific audience in mind and reflect a range of Australian experiences. As such, it’s fantastic to be able to support the development of these 22 productions, which give an exciting glimpse into the diversity of stories, formats and genres we will hopefully see on our screens in the coming years.”

“I’m particularly pleased Screen Australia is able to support creators to expand their skill sets and take creative risks, including actors Lucy Durack and Maria Angelico teaming up as writers on Unbeweavable and The Letdown’s Alison Bell (pictured) moving into longer-form television with drama series Australia Day.”

Television projects:

Premium Fund:

Red Hot
Lucky Country Productions Pty Ltd
Genre Drama, Thriller, Mystery
Director Rachel Ward
Writers Alexa Wyatt, Sarah Smith
Producer Bill Leimbach
Executive Producer Leonie Alldis
Synopsis A taut thriller, set in the 1960s, about a woman’s battle to save her family and town from a serial arsonist. Fear and paranoia grows as she realises the fires are lit by a local, exposing everyone’s secrets including her own.

Velvet Empire
Beyond Entertainment Pty Ltd
Genre Drama, Music, Crime
Creator Timothy Lee
Writers Timothy Lee, Jane Allen, Christopher Lee
Producers TBA, Melinda Wearne
Executive Producer David Ogilvy
Synopsis Sydney 1968, legendary outliers Dawn O’Donnell and Roger-Claude Teyssedre make a Faustian pact with notorious gangster Abe Saffron, exploiting his hold over corrupt police and politicians to build an extraordinary empire; but what begins as a burning ambition for power and influence is riven by violence and tragedy and becomes an unstoppable force to deliver change. Inspired by the book The Ghost of Ludwig Gertsch by S D Harvey.

Endemol Shine Australia Pty Ltd
Genre Comedy, Drama, Musical
Director Corrie Chen
Writers Lucy Durack, Maria Angelico
Producer Imogen Banks
Associate Producer Emelyne Palmer
Synopsis When a Christian whose life-defining, prophetic visions are waning and a hairdresser in denial of her dead grandmother’s visitations meet, they discover that when they touch, they share electrifying, psychic visions in the form of choreographed musical numbers.

Lucy’s Cannon
Blue Rocket Beyond Pty Ltd
Genre Children’s, Comedy, Animation
Director David Gurney
Writers Clare Madsen, Wendy Hanna
Producer Alicia Rackett
Co-producer Paul Moran
Executive Producers Alicia Rackett, Jenny O’Shea, David Gurney
Synopsis Lucy and Randall explore the world – by cannon!

Generate Fund:

Australia Day (Working Title)
Revlover Films Pty Ltd
Genre Drama
Writers Alison Bell, Niki Aken
Producers Martha Coleman, Lauren Edwards
Synopsis A six-part television series adapted from the stunning, award-winning collection of short stories by Melanie Cheng, this series weaves together narratives of the diverse Australian experience in a gripping drama. It’s the story of contemporary loneliness, community and the power of connection.

Dead Horse Well
December Media
Genre Mystery, Science fiction
Writers Eloise Healey, Jessica Brookman, Dylan Coleman
Producer Tony Wright
Development Producer Marie Maroun
Synopsis Dead Horse Well is a supernatural sci-fi anthology that explores fear of the unknown. Season one follows corporate scientist Belinda Hardy to the subterranean mining town of Coober Pedy where every belief she’s ever held is challenged as she tries to discover the truth behind a series of increasingly malevolent events.

Foreign Soil
Film Camp Pty Ltd
Genre Drama
Writer Maxine Beneba Clarke
Producers Philippa Campey, Samantha Dinning
Synopsis Based on the multi award-winning debut fiction collection by Maxine Beneba Clarke, Foreign Soil traverses six thematically linked stories in which the marginalised and othered collide with their environment, as they search for empowerment and belonging.

Golden Boy (Working Title)
Spaceboy Pty Ltd
Genre Comedy
Directors Steve Anthopoulos, Mansoor Noor
Writers Steve Anthopoulos, Sami Shah, Vidya Rajan, Mansoor Noor, Luke Davidson
Producers Yingna Lu, Steve Anthopoulos, Neal Downward
Synopsis Hassan, a charming young imam, shoots to national headlines when he saves Christmas carolling teenagers from a burning bus. However, he soon learns that the only thing Australia loves more than celebrating a hero, is tearing one down.

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