Screen Australia, the Australian Federal Government’s key funding body for screen production, is providing production funding for several docs commissioned by Australian pubcaster SBS.
The four one-hour docs will be part of season three of ‘Untold Australia’ — the pubcaster’s observational doc strand, which aims to look look at hidden multicultural communities in Australia.
The first season included the documentaries Indian Wedding Race, Strictly Jewish and A Modern Mutiny. For its second season, SBS partnered with Screen Queensland to fund four virtual reality projects from Queensland-based filmmakers.
The projects are for the third descriptions (with descriptions from Screen Australia) are:
Emerging West Australian producer Alice Wolfe has partnered with executive producers from Joined Up Films for a look at policing tactics in one of Australia’s most multicultural suburbs. Set in the Perth suburb of the same name, Mirrabooka will focus on the specialist Mirrabooka Multicultural Unit, tasked with aiding the local police force by facilitating communication with a community that speaks over 100 languages. Stuart O’Rourke and Sam Field will direct (Periscope Pictures).
From producers Janine Hosking and Robin Eastwood, Miss Lebanon takes audiences behind the scenes of the 2017 Miss Lebanon Australia beauty pageant in Sydney, where the entrants are vying for the top title, while the 2016 winner competes for the international title in Lebanon. Hosking is also directing and executive producing (IKandy Films).
Rara Rabbis will document the work of a group of Australian Chassidic Jewish Rabbis, who travel through the Australian Outback to find hidden communities of ‘lost Jews’ and offer them an opportunity to reconnect with their heritage. Produced by Lizzette Atkins and Rhian Skirving, the film will be directed by Danny Ben-Moshe who won the Walkley Documentary Award with Dan Goldberg for Code of Silence in 2014 (Unicorn Films).
“The Cocos Question”
The Cocos Question will shine a light on the remote and little-known Cocos Islands off the coast of West Australia, inhabited by two very distinct cultures: descendants of Christian British colonialists, and the Sunni Muslim Coco Malays (pictured). Produced by Tony Jackson, written by David Collins and Jackson, and directed by Ben Pederick, it will paint a remarkable portrait of a highly unusual cohabitation arrangement that is both peaceful and entirely segregated (Chemical Media).