With cameras again rolling across the state, the Victorian Government will provide a major injection to ensure the screen industry can capitalise on the huge global demand for content, backing thousands of local jobs.
Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson has announced a record investment of $33.8 million in Victorian screen productions and programs, to allow more international and local projects to be shot here.
This includes the international film, Blacklight – which started shooting in Melbourne last week. The Liam Neeson feature is one of a number of productions currently shooting in Victoria while adhering to strict COVIDSafe protocols.
Blacklight will employ 340 local crew, more than 825 casuals, cast and extras, 50 local post-production, digital and visual effects professionals and support 30 Victorian businesses ranging from catering to transport.
The Government’s investment will back employment-boosting international projects like Blacklight and locally-created content, screen industry projects and talent development initiatives. More than half of the investment will be allocated in the current financial year, providing significant immediate job stimulus.
“Global demand for movies, TV shows and games continues to skyrocket and we are ensuring Victoria is ready to capture our share of that huge market,” said Minister Pearson. “This will support thousands of jobs in an industry that’s been hit hard by the pandemic – and create a pipeline of work for the future.”
Some $19.2 million will be allocated to attract international and interstate screen projects through a new Victorian Screen Incentive – which will target physical productions, visual effects, animation, post-production and, for the first time, digital games projects.
There will be $4.7 million for the development and production of local content across film, television, online and games and $8.6 million to continue Film Victoria’s successful local production investment and industry and skills development programs, on top of Film Victoria’s ongoing operational funding.
As Docklands Studios Melbourne prepares to break ground on its $46 million sixth sound stage, $1.3 million will be allocated to create a trade and technical hub close to the studios for screen crews and support businesses.
While this package is focused on immediate recovery, work is also under way on a five-year Victorian Government Screen Industry Strategy which will guide investment and opportunities in the longer term.
“This crucial support signals the value of the screen industry to the economy and is a critical part of the state’s commitment to creativity and digital innovation,” said Caroline Pitcher, Film Victoria Chief Executive.
For more information and to contribute to the Victorian Government Screen Industry Strategy, visit: www.film.vic.gov.au for details.
Image: Docklands Studios Melbourne (supplied)