The Australian Film Commission’s film development branch has received an injection of AUS$1.5 million (US$1 million) in government funding, and the sector that will benefit the most from the government’s largesse is docs.
The AFC, Australia’s national film development agency, spent the past year consulting with industry specialists across the country, including the Film Finance Corporation and government funding bodies, seeking their advice on how its budget would be best spent to be of practical use to all filmmakers.
‘When we consulted with the industry guilds, even the drama directors concurred: documentary is a priority,’ says Carole Skalan, director of film development at the AFC. ‘The decision [to earmark this amount to docs] was based on our perception of greatest need.’
Doc projects have been allocated $550,000 ($365,500) of the new money – $390,000 ($259,200) will go into production, $60,000 ($40,000) into development and $100,000 ($66,500) toward packages for filmmakers who have had a recent critical or commercial success.