The Australian Film Commission (AFC) today released a major study on Development practice in the Australian feature film industry. The report has been presented to the Commonwealth Government.
The report makes detailed comparisons between development practice in Australia and in the major international filmmaking nations.
The report finds that overall levels of development investment in feature films in Australia are low, particularly when compared to other significant non-US film industries in Europe and the UK, and that funding for development has decreased over recent years.
The report identities several key consequences of limited development investment including inadequate development budgets, an elongated and fractured development period, development funds spread too thinly across too many projects and a resulting limited professional base.
"The AFC is particularly concerned about the low levels of funding available for practitioner development. Today÷s filmmakers simply do not have the opportunities to gain experience that once were available in Australia as a result of several factors, including a drop in AFC investment in short film production, the decline in television training opportunities and the decline in production of higher-budget television commercials," said Kim Dalton, Chief Executive of the AFC.
The AFC will consider several key strategies in response to development issues identified in the report. They include higher levels of investment in few projects; development programs which support the separate role of producer, writer and director, and encourage the ongoing development of creative relationships between producers and writers; policies which assist producers to develop long-term business strategies; increasing opportunities for filmmakers to make short films; and programs which link development investment to the experience of the filmmakers.
Development: A study of Australian and international funding and practice in the feature film industry