AFC News June 2008
Screen Australia aims to expand the potential of the film industry and the opportunities available to the 50,000-plus people currently working in the sector. It will build on the valuable contribution the industry already makes to the Australian economy.
Since my appointment on 18 March this year, I have been engaged in the challenging task of managing the merger of the existing agencies, ahead of the appointment of the incoming Board and permanent CEO.
I have consulted extensively with employees from the three agencies and received widespread input on the new structure. There is welcome enthusiasm for combining forces and working together. The Sydney headquarters will be at 140 and 150 William Street, Woolloomooloo, with Screen Australia Studios continuing at Lindfield; the Melbourne office will be at 144 Moray Street, South Melbourne; and Brisbane at 420 Brunswick Street, Fortitude Valley.
I have also consulted with key industry groups and will continue to offer updates on developments as Screen Australia takes shape.
The Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts, Peter Garrett, has confirmed that existing film agency guidelines for continuing programs will remain in place under Screen Australia until the end of the year "to provide certainty for the industry and avoid any hiatus in production activity".
The new Screen Australia website will provide the gateway to these ongoing programs from 1 July, at www.screenaustralia.gov.au
The Minister also stated that "This timeframe will give the new Screen Australia Board time to properly review all of the organisation's programs and structures. This will ensure they are appropriate to the functions and responsibilities which Screen Australia will have in strengthening the industry through building screen businesses and supporting projects of cultural merit."
Led most recently by Daryl Karp at Film Australia, Chris Fitchett at the AFC and Brian Rosen at the FFC, staff of all three agencies - past and present - are to be congratulated for the effort and passion they have contributed to building our current vibrant screen industries.