Film & TV

TV MiniLab For South Australia

SA FilmThe South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) is delighted to announce an exciting new initiative with a particular focus on creative outcomes for television. TV MiniLab is an intensive workshop program designed to enhance the professional skills of South Australian writers, producers and directors with the overall aim of developing a sustainable television production industry for South Australia.

The laboratory style program will run from August 30 through to Friday 15 October with a two week development recess in the middle. A presentation pitch day will be held on Tuesday 9 November followed by a two-day network pitching session to all broadcasters in Sydney, scheduled for early December.

Announcing the program, CEO Richard Harris, said “The SAFC wants to seed the genesis for a sustainable, local television industry. Our interest is to extend the knowledge of TV amongst SA practitioners and generate a number of pitch documents for TV drama projects that can be produced in South Australia. Each television production based in the state develops creative practitioners, provides crew employment and boosts the local economy. TV MiniLab will begin the next phase in up-skilling South Australian practitioners towards creating and pitching television drama on a national level”.

TV MiniLab will consist of a series of one and two day workshops, for up to eight teams of two to three successful applicants, with all applicants able to take advantage of a range of open sessions that have been built into the program. The lab will focus on developing program concepts, story outlines and production methodologies as well as introduce practitioners to the practicalities of financing, marketing and cross- platform delivery specifically associated with television production.

“As well as generating a number of ‘pitch’ projects to market-ready standard, the added benefit of TV MiniLab will be the opportunity for South Australian practitioners to establish ongoing relationships with Australia’s leading television writers, producers and broadcasters,” said Defrim Isai, General Manager, Industry Development & Production.

Defrim has worked closely with Quentin Kenihan and Shane McNeil of Q Productions Pty Ltd to develop the program in consultation with industry. Quentin and Shane, who will also be facilitating TV MiniLab, bring a unique combination of experience in both television production and workshop facilitation. Together they have assembled an A list of industry leaders in television production and broadcasting to present and participate in the workshops.
These include AFI award winning actor Marcus Graham; distributor, Victoria Baldock; Southern Star Development Executive, Rachael Turk; Executive Producer, Paul Rudd; Freehand Productions CEO, John Gregory; freelance cinematographer and producer, Gus Howard; and screen writer, Tony Morphett.

“The field of television drama is essentially a popular medium. ‘To The Rafters’ latest debut episodes peaked at about two million viewers. If a modestly budgeted Australian movie got two million people to the cinemas, it’d gross about $30 million and all our film industry worries would be over. Television is worth considering as a marketplace for your stories and ideas about life”, said Tony Morphett (Sea Patrol, Blue Heelers).

Upon completion of the TV MiniLab, all participating teams will ‘pitch’ their proposed TV program/series to an industry panel comprised of SAFC staff and industry professionals. The three best ‘pitched’ ideas, as judged by the panel, will be funded by the SAFC to travel to meet and present their successful pitches to selected national broadcasters and production companies, with the aim of securing a development deal.

TV MiniLab will develop up to 10 pitch projects in the first year with up to $8,000 in development funds to each project that generates significant broadcaster interest.

Final application date for the 2010 TV MiniLab is Friday 6 August 2010. Visit for more information including program guidelines and application form.

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