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Screenwest Announces RED Initiative for Western Australian Indigenous Female Writer/Directors

In 2020, Screenwest will work with Pink Pepper Productions, Ramu Productions and Aotearoa (New Zealand) Production company Brown Sugar Apple Grunt, to offer a new and unique opportunity for up to eight Western Australian Indigenous female Writer/Directors to participate in a development writing and directing initiative called RED.

The initiative follows the innovative format developed by New Zealand producers Kerry Warkia and Kiel McNaughton with their films WARU, and VAI which successfully launched Maori and Pacific film makers internationally.

The eight successful applicants will develop one scripted 80-minute Indigenous feature film project for production. All eight Indigenous female creatives will be writing and directing 10-minute shorts that will intertwine a common theme, exploring the impact of ‘missing Indigenous women’ from a female Aboriginal perspective; for the combined feature film. This will then go into production late 2020.

Co-Producers Taryne Laffar and Jodie Bell are excited to be leading this amazing project and explained, “The opportunity to work with Kerry Warkia and Kiel McNaughton, producers of WARU and VAI, and produce a film of this format, is ground-breaking in Western Australia.  This project offers a great opportunity for collaboration across the State for female Indigenous filmmakers, to tell a compelling story on a subject that until recently has been taboo territory.”

“Screenwest are pleased to support this new innovative initiative driven by three exceptional Indigenous Production companies. It will explore unique stories from eight Indigenous women’s perspective, giving Indigenous Western Australian women a strong voice that will be heard around the world. I look forward to be seeing, with the community, the final powerful film,” explained Devina McPherson, Indigenous Executive at Screenwest.

Short-listed applicants will be interviewed, and selected participants will take part in an intensive development program.

The initial stage will be an intensive weeklong writer’s room ‘ideas’ workshop to be held in a regional location in late April 2020 to produce the draft scripts, and then creative sessions following in the months after. until final scripts are complete.

“This unique new initiative not only aims to tell Western Australian stories from a female Aboriginal perspective, but will support and develop local talent by working with three incredible production companies. It’s also a great way to engage with the New Zealand screen sector through their Maori filmmakers. Screenwest is excited to support RED, which is the only initiative of its kind in Australia,” explained Matthew Horrrocks, Head of Screen Investment and Strategic Projects at Screenwest.

“We’re excited for the creatives, their stories, themes, landscapes, communities and hope. The importance of collaborative work, the importance of coming together, the importance of visibility, the breaking open of what’s been forced closed, the healing, the beautiful & meaningful work that will come from it, and the solidarity & strength of indigenous women speaking as one. It’s work that the world needs right now,” announced Kerry Warkia Founding Partner of Brown Sugar Apple Grunt Productions.


How to Apply

All applicants are required to complete an application through the Red Application Portal

All applications must be received no later than 5:00pm AWST on Monday, 24 February 2020.

The full guidelines, application materials and eligibility criteria are available in the on the RED Initiative page of the Screenwest website.

All program guidelines are to be read in conjunction with the Screenwest Terms of Trade.

For more information or further enquiries about the application process, please see the contact details on the RED application portal on the Brown Sugar Apple Grunt website.


Contact Screenwest

T: +61 8 6169 2100

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Posted 06 February 2020

Filed under funding