Investment Guidelines

Investment Guidelines

Screen Queensland investment supports the development of compelling, Queensland-created IDEAS to a stage where they are able to attach MARKET, move forward to FINANCE and be enjoyed by an Australian and global audience. Screen Queensland invests in all screen platforms including games.

Explore the guidelines below to learn more about how to access Screen Queensland investment in these three categories.

Please note: production attraction grant and incentive opportunities, as well as current talent development initiatives, do not form part of these guidelines. Please see Production Attraction and APPLY NOW for these items.

What do these guielines cover?

The Investment Guidelines cover screen stories across different stages of the creative process.

SQ invests in stories across their lifecycle from IDEAS to MARKET and FINANCE. These terms are the names of the three programs that fall under the SQ Investment Guidelines.

The definition of these are:

  • IDEAS – This program applies to stories at the concept or development stage;
  • MARKET – This program supports individuals or teams travelling to MARKET to attract support/ finance;
  • FINANCE – This program is for stories headed into production for films/ series or development for games.
Eligibility – who can apply?

ANYONE who:

  • Lives and works in Queensland (and has been a resident of the state for more than six months);
  • Is an Australian resident working with someone in a key creative role (writer, director, producer) who lives and works in Queensland;
  • Can provide the required detail/documents for the program they are applying for – more information under pre-paring your application.
How much can I apply for?

The amounts available vary depending on the stage your project is in. You will be required to supply budgets/ justification for the amount you’re requesting and SQ will work with you to assist where we can.

SQ investments are typically recoupable (unless otherwise stated) and the details of this will be discussed through the application process.

IDEAS

  • Concept stage – up to $7,500
  • Later stage – up to $25,000 (and a maximum of $100,000, including for the concept, over the project’s lifetime)
  • 110% investment is recoupable on the first day of principle photography

MARKET

  • Grants of up to $5,000 for an individual and $7,500 for a team for markets outside the Asia Pacific region that suit your slate of 3+ projects (1 project for games)
  • Grants of up to $3,500 for an individual and $5,000 for a team for markets within the Asia Pacific region that suit your slate of 3+ projects (1 project for games)
  • Grants of up to $1,000 for an individual and $1,500 for a team for Australian markets that suit your slate of 3+ projects  (1 project for games)
  • Travellers must be Queensland residents
  • Applications must be received at least 6 weeks prior to the departure date.
  • Travel grants are not typically recoupable

FINANCE

  • Up to $50,000 for games
  • Up to $850,000 for other screen stories, in the context of
    • Size of the audience
    • Overall budget
    • Spend in Queensland (as a guide your ask should be no more than 8% of state spend for a commercial project or 15% of state spend for a cultural or career-building project with substantial benefits – beyond the spend – to Queensland)
    • Other financing partners and their commitment
Preparing your application: IDEAS

IDEAS applications can be submitted anytime and you will typically receive an outcome in six weeks.

You can preview the application form on smarty grants.

Your proposal will need to include:

  • Logline – your idea in a sentence
  • Short pitch – your idea in one page
  • Creative materials relevant to the stage you’re at – e.g. for Later Stage this might include scripts, bible, proof of concept, trailers
  • Creative plan – how are you going to bring this idea to life on screen?
  • Audience plan – who is your audience and how will you reach them?
  • Commercial plan – your plan for financing and monetising your idea
  • What you plan to spend the funding on and details of any co-funding. For Later Stage projects, this will need to include matched/significant contributory funding from market (that can’t be you and has to be a good match to your project).
  • Team – the CVs and bios of the people who have agreed to be part of your project

Legalities – things you must have:

  • Rights to the story – tick the box
  • Option agreement and/or the approval of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owners of the story
  • Writers/key creative agreement
Preparing your application: MARKET

MARKET applications must be received at least 6 weeks prior to your departure date, but can be submitted at any time of year.

You can preview the application form on smarty grants.

Your proposal will need to include:

  • Plan – an outline of who you are going to meet and why they’ll be interested in your slate
  • Strategy – why this market is the right one for you and your business/career
  • Team – your cv and bio and those of anyone you’re travelling with

Legalities – things you must have:

  • Rights to the story – tick the box
  • Option agreement and/or the approval of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owners of the story
  • Writers/key creative agreement
Preparing your application: FINANCE

FINANCE applications for film or series for under $100k can be submitted at any time.

FINANCE applications related to film or series for more than $100k need to be submitted inline with SQ board cut off dates.

FINANCE for games happens in rounds and rounds for 2019 have closed.

Your proposal will need to include:

  • Creative materials incl. logline, one-pager, scripts
  • Project plan (incl. proposed schedule/timeline, director’s vision, benefits to Queensland)
  • Audience plan (incl. competitor and market analysis for games)
  • Confirmation of all market, cast and key attachments
  • Finance plan, commercial plan and recoupment structure
  • A-Z Budget including Queensland Production Expenditure (QPE). Use the template available at the Screen Australia document library or use the Games budget template for games applications.
  • Team – cvs and bios of the key creatives involved in your project, director showreel

Legalities – things you must have:

  • Rights to the story – tick the box
  • Option agreement and/or the approval of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owners of the story
  • Writers/key creative agreement
  • Supporting documents for the finance plan incl. Provisional certificate for projects applying for the Producer Offset, completion guarantee etc.
IMPORTANT: Documents to read before you apply

It’s a good idea to be across our Terms of Trade, QPE definition and our corporate and strategic plans while preparing your application.

What SQ are looking for?

SQ are interested in investing in projects that align with our values which are: Excellence, Revolutionary and Generous.

When preparing your application ask yourself:

  • Is it a good story?
  • Is it well-told and likely to excite an audience?
  • Do the team have a clear idea of who their audience is and how to reach them?
  • Is the budget appropriate for the kind of project and the size of the audience it will reach?
  • Has the team got a good reputation for delivering what it says it will and the skills to make this happen?

  • How will this impact the careers of Queensland talent and the state screen sector more broadly?

We particularly encourage diverse individuals to apply.

We seek to support the creation and growth of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander screen content, practitioners and representation across our industry and state. Additionally, we are committed to ensuring diverse representation across all aspects of the production and development process – namely those who are culturally and linguistically diverse, located regionally, have a disability and/or identify as female, non-binary and/or are members of the LGBTIQ+ community.

Contact us

SQ are keen to help you submit the best application you possibly can, so please feel free to call or email us should be need assistance.

Call us on 07 3248 0500 or email content@screenqld.com.au

FINANCE (GAMES): NOW CLOSED

For SQ’s full list of currently open Smarty Grants applications click here