The current inquiry of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Communications and the Arts looks at factors that contribute to the growth and sustainability of the Australian film and television industry. Committee chair and Liberal MP Luke Howarth said the committee wanted to hear how independent filmmakers and major film and TV companies could “expand and better compete for investment with producers and multi-platform production companies from overseas.”
While a lot of the focus is on the financial side, there is also a very real need to consider the optimisation of creative supply, for it is the work and the capacity of our creative talent that significantly determines a screen work’s success.
AMPAG’s submission to the Inquiry aims to highlight the benefits that flow from the interconnectedness of stage and screen. The nexus between the two is evident in the nurturing of actors, playwrights and directors, designers, and building and developing our own stories. In developing and renewing the pool of talent available to both the theatre and screen sectors, theatre is often the foundation of a creative career.
The sustainability of film and television drama production in Australia is inextricably linked to the health and vibrancy of the performing arts, particularly theatre as the provider of new opportunities to nurture creative talent and develop new Australian works. How healthy and what level of opportunities are being created for our talent base is difficult to track. While screen drama trend data reports are produced annually, there is no equivalent for theatre. AMPAG observes there is merit in working to reduce siloing of these two sectors as well as in exploring initiatives that explore story development across the screen and theatre.