The Andrews Labor Government has unveiled Victoria’s first screen strategy in more than a decade, to supercharge film, television, and digital games projects and create more jobs for Victorians.
Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson has launched VICSCREEN, investing a record $120.7 million as part of a $191.5 million four-year strategy to put Victoria at the forefront of the global screen entertainment boom.
The strategy is set to support more than 40,000 jobs and inject more than $1.2 billion back into the Victorian economy. As well as growing screen jobs, it will strengthen screen businesses, foster homegrown talent, and bring more local content to screens worldwide.
It will build on the recent success of local productions such as The Dry, the $46 million expansion at Docklands Studios Melbourne with a sixth sound stage and the $40 million transformation of our screen museum at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI).
With a focus on supporting diversity and inclusion on screen and behind the scenes, VICSCREEN actions include the new Victorian Production Fund that will boost the production of Victorian-led film, television, online and digital games content and a new creators lab, with the first set of projects focused on premium drama.
As our screen workforce grows, we’re also making sure we have the right skills to keep our state ahead of the curve. Victoria’s screen workers – including creatives and crew – will be supported with career and development programs, focusing on training in innovative digital sectors such as visual effects, games and animation.
More international screen businesses like animation house Princess Bento Studio and games studio Sledgehammer Games will be attracted to set up in Victoria, while also supporting local businesses to develop their commercial capabilities and global connections. Blockbuster productions remain a focus through the expansion of the Victorian Screen Incentive, which seeks to attract international and interstate film, television, and games projects to the state, creating a pipeline of secure work for local screen workers and specialist businesses.
Opening up our industry to secure Victorian jobs relies on international cast and crew having certainty that they can travel to Victoria – that’s one of the reasons we’ve requested approval from the Commonwealth to accept small numbers of key economic cohorts into our state.
Cinema lovers will also get a look in with continued support for screen events and festivals – including revitalising Melbourne International Film Festival to propel it into a new era, with a stronger international profile.
ACMI will build on its success with Story of the Moving Image and continue its work developing new drawcard exhibitions and activities for audiences of all ages.
In line with the ambition of the strategy, the Government’s screen agency Film Victoria will be revitalised and expanded to lead the implementation of VICSCREEN in collaboration with Docklands Studios Melbourne, ACMI, Creative Victoria and industry stakeholders.
Read the full strategy here.