SQ News

Screen Queensland looks back at the past 12months and reflects on the highlights that tell a story of an industry that is rebuilding and forging ahead into a New Year and a new screen landscape.


– Academy Award winner Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken completes principal photography at Village Roadshow Studios and other locations throughout Queensland employing 3180 people including 1039 crew, 82 cast and 2059 extras.  It will be released in Australian cinemas 15 January 2015.

– Leanne Tonkes, Steven Lance and Steve Kearney wrap on their Screen Queensland funded production My Mistress.

– Australian actor John Jarratt makes his directorial debut in Queensland with the thriller StalkHer produced by Queensland-based OzPix Entertainment.

– The Railway Man continues to perform well at Australian cinemas to both critical and popular acclaim.


– Screen Queensland announces funding to NITV for the production of A.N.Z.A.C. episodes of ‘Our Stories, Our Way, Everyday’ focussing on the roles of Indigenous people in the Australian Defence Force.  Production companies involved include Bacon Factory Films and WildBear Entertainment.

– The global hit television series Modern Family films in the Whitsundays, attracted to Queensland via Screen Queensland’s Production Incentive Program.  This one episode will have a global audience reach of 125 million viewers.

MARCH 2014

– Hollywood blockbuster San Andreas commences production employing more than 3,000 Queenslanders, made up of crew, actors, stunt performers, extras and the hire of technicians.

– Low-budget film initiative The Fear of Darkness by Queensland director Chris Fitchett and Queensland producer, Mark Overett, goes into production at the Village Roadshow Studios.

– Screen Queensland launches the Screen Queensland iPhone app, powered by global industry leaders Reel Scout™ that allows users to search images and data from Screen Queensland’s online Locations Gallery, Crew and Facilities Directory.

– Screen Queensland presents Alan Harris ‘Film Financing 101’ workshops in both Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

– Hoodlum’s television series and multiplatform thriller, Secrets and Lies premieres on Network Ten.  The show’s format had since been picked up by the ABC network in the USA for next season with marquee US talent.  Hoodlum’s success continues with Fat Cow Motel and The Strange Calls being formatted for the US with all the original series receiving investment funding by Screen Queensland.

APRIL 2014

– Parer’s War, the Screen Queensland funded biopic telemovie about Australian World War II cameraman Damien Parer whose cinematography earned Australia’s first Oscar, premieres on ABC 1.

– A new-look Gold Coast Film Festival takes place supported by Screen Queensland’s Screen Culture funding.

– Queensland’s Ludo Studio #7DaysLater, a multiplatform project, wins an International Digital Emmy® Award at the MIP-TV market in Cannes.

– Applications open for the Raw Nerve Program, an initiative of Screen Queensland in collaboration with Screen Australia that supports the production of short films by new and emerging practitioners.

MAY 2014

Meet the Broadcasters: SBS.  A seminar and Q&A session held with head executives from SBS to discuss television broadcasting, distribution and the opportunities that exist for established and emerging screen practitioners based in Queensland.

– Screen Queensland announces its reduction in the loan fees charged on RFFF loansfrom 8% down to 7% making it an extremely competitive option for Queensland-based production companies.

– Carbon Media receives a Highly Commended Award for their Screen Queensland supported Handball Heroes television series in the 2014 Queensland Reconciliation Awards in the Business category.

JUNE 2014

– Screen Queensland presents the two-day Kids Content, Games & Convergence conference (view the panel sessions on YouTube here) featuring presentations from leading industry experts on the latest issues and trends in children’s programming, gaming, multiplatform and digital entertainment.

– Screen Queensland announces economic development board Brisbane Marketing will stage a re-imagined major Brisbane film festival – the ‘Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival’.  Screen Queensland will provide $700 000 a year over three years as part of its Screen Culture funding program.

– To remain internationally competitive, Screen Queensland’s Locations’ Department continues to work hard to build the Film Friendly Pathways Program throughout regional Queensland.  The Film Friendly Pathways Program is an initiative that aims to attract productions to Queensland (and focusing heavily on regional Queensland) by establishing and growing relationships among the state government, industry and the councils of local government areas involved in providing and approving locations for filming.

– Screen Queensland supports the Inaugural ‘Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival’ as part of its Screen Culture Funding Program including retrospective and contemporary outback-inspired films screened under the stars in Winton’s Royal Open Air Theatre; filmmaking workshops (including the role of indigenous culture in filmmaking); public discussions with filmmakers; special events and film competitions targeting students in Western Queensland.

– Queensland-based Carbon Media wins the Telstra Queensland Business of the Year Award.

– Screen Queensland funds 14 episodes of ‘Our Stories, Our Way, Everyday’ for NITV.  Production companies involved include Goorie Vision, Janine Kelly Productions, Nikki Michail, Turn Dog Quick Films and Bacon Factory Films.

JULY 2014

– The financial year report cards are in and Queensland boasts an increase in domestic production from $33 million in 2012–13 to $42 million in 2013–14 – an increase of 27 per cent.  18 domestic productions occurred in Queensland over the 2013–14 financial year.

– Queensland announced as the leading state in Australia in securing international productions in the 2013-14 financial year.  International production accounted for $52.2 million in Queensland production expenditure (this compared to zero off shore dollars in 2012–13).

– Shooting for Wild But True, a new children’s television series funded by Screen Queensland starts filming in SEQ with Beyond Screen Production producing the series for Discovery Kids Asia.

– Screen Queensland supports 30 festivals and screen culture-related activities throughScreen Culture grants – a record amount.

– An exclusive Q&A presented by Screen Queensland with Hollywood producer Rob Cowan (San Andreas, The Conjuring) and Screen Queensland CEO Tracey Vieira on the Gold Coast. Rob spoke about “persistence, passion and networking” as key to forging a successful career in film.

– In Conversation with Australian / Mexican writer-director + 2010 Camera d’Or winner (Cannes Film Festival) Michael Rowe, joined by Freshwater Pictures’ Trish Lake, discussing his career and his most recent project the Screen Queensland supported co-production Rest Home.


– Introduction of monthly networking sessions for the Queensland screen industry.

Meet the Broadcasters: Foxtel, headed by an interstate guest panel comprising Ross Crowley (Director of Programming), Penny Win (Commissioning Editor of Drama), Paul Macionis (Head of Business Affairs), and Darren Distefano (Business Affairs Manager.)

– The Spierig brothers Predestination is the opening night film at the 2014 Melbourne International Film Festival.

My Mistress has its World Premiere at MIFF 2014.

– Other Screen Queensland supported films screening at MIFF 2014 include Electric Boogaloo: The Wild Untold Story of Cannon Films and Turkey Shoot Reloaded.

– Screen Queensland supports a number of Queensland writers and producers at MIFF 37º South Market industry events in 2014.

– Screen Queensland supported documentary All This Mayhem opens in Australian cinemas and gets a 30 screen UK cinema release, one of the biggest in history for an Australian documentary.

– Screen Queensland supports the two-day GAME ON symposium event held in Brisbane.

– After more than 50 years working in the screen industry, Jock Blair retires.


– Screen Queensland unveils its revitalised Early Career Screen Program.

Meet the Broadcasters: YouTube with Georgie Powell on the ’10 Fundamentals of Programming’ for emerging and existing screen practitioners in Queensland.

– Television series the Hiding shoots on the Gold Coast by producers Playmaker Media and supported by Screen Queensland Production Investment funding.

– Screen Queensland presents ‘Writing for the Screen: Creativity, Craft and Career’ at the Cairns Tropical Writers Festival.

Snake Sheila, a 10-part factual television series commences filming in South East Queensland.  Funded by Screen Queensland, Brisbane-based companies, Flickchicks comprising director and writer Mandy Lake and producer Margie Brown (The 100+ Club), and WildBear Entertainment are producing the series for Discovery Channel’s Animal Planet International.

Big Brother commences, employing over 300 crew and injecting over $17 million into Queensland.

– Screen Queensland’s Head of Development and Production, Jo Dillon, travels to the Northern Peninsula Area (NPA) for the 16th National Remote Indigenous Media Festival. The event, held across five communities at the tip of Horne Cape York peninsula, brought together 150 remote community broadcasters, media producers and industry partners from across Australia and featured a program packed with workshops, industry forums, round tables, cinema screenings and special outdoor events.


– Screen Queensland announces that filming for the fifth instalment of Pirates of the Caribbean will take place exclusively in Queensland in 2015 bringing in about $100 million to Queensland and creating thousands of local jobs. This will be the largest international feature film ever to shoot in Australia.

– Screen Queensland supports the ‘A conversation with Lord David Puttnam’ luncheon event held at QUT.

– Australia’s Hugh Jackman announces at the Australians in Film Benefit Gala Dinner in Santa Monica California a new initiative by Screen Queensland and Australians in Film, namely the Greg Coote Scholarship. More details on this scholarship to be available in early 2015.

– Queensland producer Jonathan M. Shiff Productions Series 2 of children’s program Mako Mermaids – Island of Secrets wraps shooting at Village Roadshow Studios. This one local production provided 500 jobs broken down to 150 jobs for crew, 30 cast members and 320 extras and has secured a landmark deal with US-based internet streaming network, Netflix.

– A contingent of Queensland producers supported through Screen Queensland’s screen culture program attend The Australian International Movie Convention (AIMC) on the Gold Coast.

– Queensland producers attend the Producer Collaboration Sessions during AusFilm Week Los Angeles and London pitching their projects through Screen Queensland AusFilm membership.

– Sir David Attenborough returns to Australia to shoot a 3D nature program showcasing the Great Barrier Reef’s unique species in Far North Queensland, David Attenborough: The Third Dimension. 


– Screen Queensland announces the six companies to receive funding under the agency’s new initiative, the Enterprise Queensland Program. The program is designed to stimulate a strong screen community that prioritises strong returns on investment, build commercial and entrepreneurial capacity and help screen businesses achieve sustainable long-term growth.

– Screen Queensland hosts ‘The Queensland Pitch’ for Queensland-based early career film, television and multiplatform creators.  Meg Carlson took out the event and represented Queensland at the Screen Producers Australia (SPA) annual SCREEN FOREVER Conference Holding Redlich ‘Pitch to the Pro’s’ Competition – Meg also took home the national trophy!

– Screen Queensland announces it will provide production investment funding to the second series of The Code produced by Playmaker Media which will commence production in Queensland in 2015.

My Mistress opens on limited release in Australian cinemas.

– Screen Queensland presents the one-day Digital Masterclass with Gary Bryman, Executive Producer at TCG Studio, Producer Emily Barclay-Ford, and writer and director Daley Pearson of Ludo Studio; plus a MIPCOM Seminar with Peter Rhodes, Managing Director of Reed MIDEM UK.

– Halfbrick Studios wins the 2014 Australian Export Award – Online Sales.  Halfbrick Studios created the universally loved, mobile device gaming sensation Fruit Ninja, which has had over 500 million downloads and is the second highest selling game of all time on the iOS platform.  Halfbrick’s Fruit Ninja, Jetpack Joyride and Fish Out Of Water are international success stories for Australia.

– Carbon Media announces its involvement in Sesame Street’s 45th season celebrations having now delivered a total of four clips for the show – a first for any Australian production company.  Juggling 3, the first of the three completed for this season goes to air in the US on the PBS to approx. 35 million viewers (with the other 2 in January and June 2015).

– Other episodes produced by Queensland companies for Sesame Street Season 45 include Bacon Factory Films (Dean Gibson) with The Recyclables ep. and Like a Photon (Kristen Souvlis) ‘The 1-10 Hoedown’ ep.

– Arts Minister Ian Walker officiates the Queensland Premiere of Unbroken at the Roxy Theatre, Warner Bros. Movie World as presented by Universal Pictures.  The Premiere played host to some of Queensland’s most inspiring local heroes, the men and women who embody the very essence of strength, courage and resilience captured so well inUnbroken, such as Sally Pearson, Hetty Johnston and Karni Liddell.

– Queensland is well represented at the 2014 SCREEN FOREVER SPA Awards with the following wins:
o Feature Film Production of the Year – The Railway Man | Pictures in Paradise

o Interactive Production of the Year – Secrets and Lies | Hoodlum

o Breakthrough Business of the Year, Carbon Media


– Screen Queensland presents the Queensland Premiere of Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films with a special Q&A with director Mark Hartley and producer Veronica Fury at the Gallery of Modern Art Brisbane.

– Screen Queensland presents ‘Thrills, Chills and Spills: The Trials and Triumphs of Home Grown Genre’ Industry Panel Discussion with Chris Brown, Mark Hartley, Shayne Armstrong, Shane Krause and Emma Jensen at the State Library of Queensland.

– Screen Queensland supported television series Save Your Life Tonight by WildBear Entertainment premieres on ABC TV.  Tune in for the remaining episodes all airing at 6.30pm: Ep 3 Mental Health – Sun 28 Dec; Ep 4 Heart – Sun 4 Jan; Ep 5 Cancer – Sun 11 Jan; and Ep 6 Lung – Sun 18 Jan.

– Screen Queensland announces filming of a third series of Mako: Island of Secrets to commence on the Gold Coast in 2015 by Jonathan M. Shiff Productions and The Family Law, a six-part series to show on SBS, also to be filmed in Queensland.  This continues the trend of increased television series production following recent announcement of series two for the highly-acclaimed ABC political thriller, The Code.

– Screen Queensland moves to a new head office space to enable better accessibility to local industry and to create a vibrant and creative hub, located at:
Suite 1, Ground Floor | 30 Florence Street | Newstead QLD 4005

– Screen Queensland renews its lease for its Gold Coast office at Village Roadshow Studios, Building 9A Entertainment Road, Oxenford.

– Applications open for the 2015-16 Screen Culture Funding Program.

Predestination hits number one on the Australian iTunes chart after only two days on release which Variety describes as ‘succeed{ing} in teasing the brain and touching the heart.’

– Nominees announced for the 2015 AACTA Awards.  The 4th AACTA Awards Ceremony will be broadcast on Network Ten on Thursday 29 January 2015 and will present more than 40 Awards across feature film, television, documentary and short film.  Click here to view the productions supported by Screen Queensland development and production investment funding including Predestination who has received the most nominations for the 2015 AACTAs with nine nods coming in front of Russell Crowe’s The Water Diviner (eight nominations) and David Michôd’s The Rover (seven nominations) and The Railway Manreceiving six nominations.

Christmas office hours

Please note the Screen Queensland office will be closed from Wednesday 24 December 2014 until Friday 2 January 2015 inclusive.  We shall reopen at 9.00am on Monday 5 January 2015.

All the staff at Screen Queensland wish you and your families a very ‘Merry Christmas’ and safe holiday season.