Screen NSW is stepping up its push for gender equity in the screen sector, announcing a requirement that all TV drama series must now include female key creatives on their team in order to receive development or production finance.
“The purpose is to place women in meaningful internships that lead to real jobs and screen credits and thereby populate the industry with more women,” said Screen NSW CEO, Courtney Gibson.
“Screen NSW has worked closely with industry to identify the best ways to achieve systemic change. Production companies, broadcasters and other screen organisations have been incredibly supportive and we’re starting to see real impact as a result,” Gibson added.
“But in order to move the needle even further, going forward, it will be a requirement for any television drama series to include female writers and/or directors and/or producers to secure development or production finance from us.”
Gibson said that Screen NSW has also taken the decision that it will not sponsor, support or participate in any initiative, event, conference, market or festival which includes all-male panels and doesn’t foster female participation and diversity more broadly.
The agency has also announced a raft of new initiatives for women in writer, director and producer roles with top NSW production companies and on big budget international productions shooting in Australia. Those include:
• Amazons@GiantDwarf is a partnership between Screen NSW and the company behind The Chaser to train and crew up an all-female live TV studio floor crew for events at the Giant Dwarf Theatre in Sydney.
• Acclaimed actress Sacha Horler will progress her career ambitions to produce with an internship at Goalpost Pictures Australia (The Sapphires, Cleverman), working with leading female producers Rosemary Blight and Kylie du Fresne.
• Two emerging female writers Cate Stewart and Helen Dallimore will join the writing team for Here Come The Habibs 2. Dallimore’s internship led her to write a full episode of the second season of the hit show and Stewart has stayed with production company Jungle in a paid position on season 2 of No Activity for Stan.
• Nina Oyama recently finished an internship in the writers room on The Chaser’s Election Desk whilePenny Greenhalgh emerged from an internship in The Checkout writers room with Giant Dwarf, to step into a role in the writers room of a new series with Ambience Entertainment.
• Jed Malone used her medical degree to great advantage when interning as a director’s attachment on the first series of Nine’s upcoming Doctor Doctor. Essential Media kept Malone on the team as medical adviser on the show and she was then invited to join the writers room for the final two episodes.