The fight is not over yet.

BCM330

Final debate: Is it time to give up on Australian content?

1200x630bb

source: http://is1.mzstatic.com/

Our film industry has been struggling for many years. There have been more busts than booms. Our last boom period in the 1990’s gave us classics such as ‘Muriel’s Wedding’, ‘Priscilla Queen of the Desert’ and ‘The Castle’.  It is iconic films like these that critics argue are essential to preserve our Australian culture and national identity for generations to come. However, in terms of success can we just rely on the cultural contribution Australian films have to offer? or do they need to be profitable. After all films, need to make some profit otherwise, it isn’t sustainable, the film industry needs to be successful in order to support home-grown talent. We’ve seen that in 2016 Australian films hit an all-time low with just 1.9 percent of all box office earnings. This shows that our industry needs to be changed. In my opinion, we have two options to reignite our industry.

The first option being that in order for Australian films to succeed we need to rethink our marketing and distribution strategies.

It is argued that an ‘Australian film’ as a brand doesn’t market well will Australian audiences and the brand doesn’t translate to audiences with traditional television advertisements (Kaufman 2009, p.6). If a film is marketed strategically, it has the potential to bring in big return. The ‘Blair Witch Project’ as a case study, shows that how a film on $60,000 budget, made over $US 250,000 worldwide thanks to clever marketing. In comparison, the similar Australian project ‘The Tunnel’ made a sad $1500 at the box office, because frankly, no one knew it was released. This also raises the question about distribution of our films. Is it even worth sending them to cinema anymore? Attending the cinema is now more of an ‘event’ for people, because reality is, the movies are expensive and people only want to pay if they are going to get their money’s worth, like Thor for example. This makes shelf life at the cinemas very tight for Australian films, lasting a week at cinemas if making it at all (Aveyard 2011 p.37). In the last ten years, the amount of Australian films being screened at less than one hundred cinemas has doubled. A 2015 study by Screen Australia showed that the increased competition by DVDs, event television and streaming services was also steering Aussies away from cinemas and thus changing our entertainment landscape.

The second option is that we need to be less restrictive on what we determine ‘Australian content’ is. I think we need to start investing in more co-production films and accepting runaway productions as Australian. Co-productions can be considered a national project and receive funding from Screen Australia. Runaway productions in 2016, injected $420 million into the Australian economy. However, Australia needs to be strategic to entice more films to be shot here. The film ‘The Martian’ with Matt Damon originally intended to be shot in Australia but moved filming to Hungary to due to better tax incentives. The location tax incentive in Australia is currently 16.5 percent but key industry members believe it should be raised to 30 percent if we want to entice more Hollywood films to come here.

1200x630bb1

source: http://is1.mzstatic.com/

Films like ‘The Great Gatsby’ & ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ were filmed In Australia, with Australian casting and crew so doesn’t that technically make them Australian films? I believe so. I also feel that this is the modern Australian film industry that we are becoming and should start supporting it and being less restrictive on what we determine Australian content is. We must also re-evaluate our marketing and distribution strategies and focus on more straight to DVD or streaming service releases.

 Reference:

Aveyard, K 2011, ‘Australian films at the cinema: rethinking the role of distribution and exhibition ‘, Media international Australia, no. 138, pp. 36-45 

Kaufman, T 2009, ‘Shortcuts: finding Australian audiences for Australian films’, Metro: media & education magazine, no. 163, pp. 6-8 

 

 

Advertisements

It’s a fragmented world we live in.

BCM330

Debate: The way we watch favours global cultural diversity over Australian content

Australians love to watch content; however, they don’t seem to love watching Australian made content. During the 2000’s decade, 90 percent of all content we watched was foreign produced (Burns & Eltham, 2010 p.103). Academics have noted that since the beginnings of Hollywood, Americanization has swarmed Australian culture (Bowles, Maltby, Verhoeven & Walsh 2007, p.98-99). Our culture has become highly influenced by Hollywood. We say catchy one-liners in everyday conversation, keep up-to-date and eagerly discuss with the latest TV shows like ‘Game of Thrones’ and follow our favourite celebrities on social media.

In 2001, as a way of helping to promote and preserve cultural diversity worldwide, UNESCO issued the ‘Declaration of Cultural Diversity’. UNESCO was aware that globalisation was becoming more apparent and want to ensure that cultural heritage can be benefited by current and future generations (Breen, 2010 p.658).

However just four years later the ‘USA-Australia Trade Agreement’ was introduced in 2005. This removed barriers that restricted the exchange of trade. This bilateral treaty was aimed at improving market integration and enhancing social and economic development between our countries (Breen, 2010 p. 657-657). Cultural commentators have criticised policy makers for this treaty, failing to recognise the consequences to our national identity. As the USA is a dominant producer in media content, its’ power to impact our culture has been referred to as ‘digital determinism’ 

United States and Australia diplomats agreeing on a deal

source: http://migrate2australia.com.au/

The term digital determinism is the structural power of technological dominance one nation can have upon another, often reproducing self-interests culturally, economically and politically to another (Breen, 2010 p.660).  The danger with ‘digital determinism’ is the level of unawareness that the influence of power is having.

“The priorities of the US in bilateral treaties combine self-interest, policy discipline and strategic practice. There is little space for compromise.” (Breen, 2010 p.666)

However, is this such a bad thing for Australian audiences?

We now have more range of content than ever before. A 2015 study from Screen Australia showed that 50 percent of Australians are now watching their content online, whether that be from catch up TV or streaming services etc.

netflix-tools-670x335

source: https://cdn.makeuseof.com/

By the end of 2015 it was estimated that 7.6 million of us were active subscribers on Netflix. Netflix and other online streaming services aren’t bound the government’s 55 percent Australian content quota that free-view TV currently has. Some critics are alarmed by this and the ‘digital determinism’ effect.

Though statistics show that more Australians are seeking out Australian content online. 96 percent of online watchers are watching Australian programs on catch up TV, typically at times that’s convenient for them. Australian drama & reality shows ranking highly on catch up TV services. The statistics show that also Australian movies are being watched more on streaming services and that Hollywood films at cinemas (this adds to the debate that the cinema experience is an ‘event’ where viewers rather watch a big blockbuster).

In conclusion, the fragmentation of our media content isn’t necessarily a bad thing and now that we have become a nation of multi-platform watchers, Australian content is still being watching even though the influx of foreign content is at an all-time high.

In early 2018 Netflix commissioned its first Australian made original series to be filmed in Queensland, which shows the direction of where we may be heading in the future and seeing more content being produced by online streaming services.

 

Reference:

Breen, M 2010, ‘Digital determinism: culture industries in the USA-Australia Free Trade Agreement’, New media & society, vol. 12, no. 4, pp. 657-676

Bowles, K., Maltby, R., Verhoeven, D. & Walsh, M. 2007, ‘More than ballyhoo?: The importance of understanding film consumption in Australia’, Metro : media & education magazine, no. 152, pp. 96-101

 

 

Runaway to the land of OZ.

BCM330

Debate: Australian jobs are more important than Australian culture

The Australian film industry is a tool we can use to showcase our ‘Australian’ culture to the world. Culture helps dictate the social norms and behaviours for a society. The stories of ‘Gallipoli’ and ‘Ned Kelly’ have helped incorporate Australian values to audiences. Australian values such as, mateship and laid-back attitude. Australian comedies have become part of everyday lingo and mannerisms for many, for example quoting ‘Muriel’s Wedding’ and being able to not take ourselves so seriously. This is a main argument for maintaining our local film industry.

mv5bnti5zta2mwutntq5yy00mmjilwe2odutodi0ogu0zgm3ymy5xkeyxkfqcgdeqxvymjuyndk2odc-_v1_

source: https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/

However, in saying this, our film industry has been struggling for many years. In 2016, Australian films accounted for only 1.9% of all box office sales. There is clear debate that Australian audiences are cautious of Australian films. Whether it’s the content, or the lack of marketing strategy or limited distribution, we have become aware that the film industry is in need of a boost (Verhoeven & Davidson, 2015 p.7).

As stated by Screen Australia, projects must have a significant amount of Australian content in order to receive the producer offset rebate. The SAC test takes into account many elements like ‘is the film about Australia? Or Australians?’ ‘Where was it filmed? Are the actors Australian?’ The strict and somewhat vague guidelines make it hard for Australian projects to receive funding. Funding from Screen Australia can be used for co-productions.

Co-Productions: When Australia partners with another nation to produce a film, they are considered a national project and can help promote national identity (passes SAC guidelines). Co-Productions are beneficial for both countries as they have access to more resources (creative, finance and more audience reach). Australia has many co-production treaties with other countries, such as Canada, with 61 co-produced films to date.

Runaway Productions: These are when international films move their filming location to another country. In the late 1990’s, with the low Australian dollar and state of the art facilities Australia soon become a hot new location for Hollywood to shoot their big budget films and benefit from great tax rebates. Vancouver, Canada until then was one of the most popular filming locations with nearly 80% of Hollywood content being shot there (Burns & Eltham 2010, p.109). Blockbuster films ‘The Matrix’ and ‘Star Wars II: Attack of the Clones’ were filmed at Sydney’s Fox Studios, with Matrix producers saying they had saved 30% of expenditure by moving filming location. This helped boom employment for Australian crew, creative and technical crew with a flow on effect for other industries like hospitality and tourism which experienced growth (Burns & Eltham 2010, p.110).

the-matrix

source: https://i0.wp.com/media2.slashfilm.com/

This boom in the runaway production period began to die down with the growing rate of the Australian dollar making it more expensive to shot here, becoming less enticing. In recent years, the production offset incentives have still managed to bring Hollywood productions back to Australia. In 2016, 16 international films were shot here injecting around $420 million into our economy. The blockbuster ‘Alien: Covenant’ will inject $60 million into New South Wales alone, with over 600 local crew employed.

Even though some disagree that these international films deserve government tax rebates and we should be saving those funds for local productions and Australian stories. We cannot argue that runaway productions bring big potential to our country, not just for the arts industry but many other that reap the benefits. Australian jobs are crucial to encourage and retain talented Australian crew and actors.

 

Reference:

Burns, A & Eltham, B 2010, ‘Boom and bust in Australian screen policy: 10BA, the Film Finance Corporation and Hollywood’s ‘race to the bottom’ ‘, Media International Australia, no. 136, pp. 103-118

Verhoeven, D., Davidson, A. & Coate, B. 2015, ‘Australian films at large: expanding the evidence about Australian cinema performance’, Studies in Australasian cinema, vol. 9, no. 1, pp. 7-20

Have you been paying attention?

BCM330, Uncategorized

Debate: Any attention is good attention?

 Australian films attempt to quintessentially showcase Australia. That is, representing Australian stories, culture, characters and landscapes to shape our National Identity. Film is often an important tool for countries to represent their culturalisms and history to audiences not only domestic but for international audiences. National films give an international audience an idea about something they maybe are not familiar with. As seen in Australian films, there are many reoccurring themes.

Australian films typically involve a heroic, masculine character. An underdog who must go through hardship in order to triumph in the end. There is that emphasis on that ‘Australian’ lifestyle, having a laid-back attitude and being a larrikin (Brabazon, 2001 p.150-151).

When the world met the larrikin character of Paul Hogan, he was immediately catapulted to the worlds stage, being a symbol of who an Australian is. In 1984, Paul Hogan starred in the Tourism Australia campaign, an attempt to sell Australia to USA. The campaign was a success. Paul Hogan’s character inviting Americans to come Down Under and have a ‘shrimp on the barbie’ became a cultural catchphrase for Americans to associate Australia with. American visitors increased by 54 per cent in years following the campaign.

We then saw Paul Hogan two years later in Crocodile Dundee, he was again playing his trademark larrikin character, in a fish-out-of-water comedy which went on to become the highest grossing Australian film of all time, making $US 328 million at the box office world-wide.

 

The character of ‘Mick Dundee’ has been debated whether or not he is the appropriate representation we want as Australians. His character established Australian stereotypes; a strong, white man of bravery and masculinity, he is un-classy and brash. As he enters the city of New York he strongly identifies as an outsider and portrays Australians as unsophisticated and provincial. His anti- authoritarian attitude is another Australian cultural trait, perhaps going back to our colonial heritage. We as Australians are seen to hit back at authority, similar themes seen in Mad Max; a masculine figure braving the elements of the harsh Australian outback (Breeton, 2010 p.114-115) .

Is there anything wrong with Mick Dundee? After all is he just a down to earth bloke we can all deep down relate to? 

mick-dundee-croc0916

source: http://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/

Though since Crocodile Dundee, we have seen a transformation from the ‘bloke’ character and embraced more complex ‘underdog’ stories such as 90’s classics, ‘Muriel’s Wedding’ and ‘Priscila Queen of the Desert’ and even recent hits such as ‘Oddball’. We have continued our Australian formula of following a likeable character to triumph or personal growth but have been successful in showcasing all types of Australians, including women, indigenous and LQBT people. In conclusion, I feel that any attention is good attention and anything that encompasses the Aussie spirit is a story worth telling. Australia is a young country and we root for the underdog prove that we are capable of growth and self-realisation, without taking ourselves too seriously.

 

Reference:

Beeton, S. 2010, ‘Landscapes as characters: film, tourism and a sense of place ‘, Metro : media & education magazine, no. 166, pp. 114-118

Brabazon, Tara 2001, ‘A pig in space?: Babe and the problem of landscape’, in Craven, Ian (ed.), Australian cinema in the 1990s, F. Cass, London, pp. 149-158

 

 

It’s not you, it’s me.

BCM330

Debate: The problem isn’t Australian films, it’s Australian audiences?

When the Australian horror film ‘The Babadook’ premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2014, it received praise and rave reviews by critics. Its ranked at 98 % on Rotten Tomatoes and even got recommended by the horror author Stephen King himself.

Screen Shot 2018-02-05 at 11.53.33 pm

It then received distribution deals to be screened in USA, UK and several countries across Europe. In just seven days upon release in the US, the film made over $US 1 million. Across the UK and Europe made a total $US 5 million.

When the film made it to Australian screens it was a box office flop and shunned by Australian audiences. ‘The Babadook’ only made it to 13 cinemas across the country and made just $AU 250,000 at the box office. These statistics aid to the debate that Australian audiences don’t like Australian films. In saying this Australian love to consume content, just not always home-made content. Australia currently has no restrictions on how many international films are allowed to be screened here.

China on the other-hand only allows 34 international films per year. This means that we as an audience have access to vast range of films at cinemas as well as on streaming services, further filtering out access to Australian content. In 2016, Australian films had hit an all-time low of just 1.9% of total box office revenue. It is argued by scholars that it often isn’t the films themselves which like ‘The Babadook’ receive universal praise but the audiences themselves.

As an avid movie fan and audience member myself, are we totally to blame? I, like many of my peers were unaware of The Babadooks’ existence till well after its’ release.

There are two arguments by critics as to why the Australian audience seems to ‘reject’ Australian made films.

The first arguments come from the fact that Australian films are failed by their attempts and or lack of marketing (Kaufman, 2009 p.4-6). Marketing plays a key role in gathering hype and buzz for a new film. As seen with the Babadook example this was a complete let down. The article by Kaufman describes that Australian films as a ‘brand’ don’t connect well with domestic audiences, stating if people don’t recognise the brand on offer the marketing has failed (Kaufman, 2009 p.6). Local films often cannot complete with the budgets of Hollywood films which have extensive advertising budgets. This puts extra pressure on distributing cinemas who look at box office of Hollywood films to prioritise the ones that will make profit.

 

‘films only exist when they are distributed properly’ – Cultural Commentator, Colin MacCabe, 2007

 

This leads to the second argument, whereas now audience members have more access to consume content and rising costs in cinema prices, going to the movies is now considered an ‘event’ for most (Aveyard, 2009 pp.40-42). People want to go to the cinemas to experience the thrills of a Hollywood blockbuster and small character driven low budget films unfortunately are no longer able to compete and therefore have no place at the cinema.

In saying this I conclude that the cinema may or not be the best place for Australians to view Australian films, though thanks to streaming services and DVD distribution, fantastic films can still be consumed and enjoyed by audiences at their own convenience.

 

Reference:

Aveyard, Karina 2011, ‘Australian films at the cinema: rethinking the role of distribution and exhibition ‘, Media international Australia, no. 138, pp. 36-45

Kaufman, Tina 2009, ‘Shortcuts: finding Australian audiences for Australian films’, Metro : media & education magazine, no. 163, pp. 6-8

 

Don’t Ozploit our identity

BCM330, Uncategorized

Debate: What can the case study of ‘Ozploitation’ tell us about the Australian film industry?

The Australian film industry has always struggled for an identity. Australian films have not been coy about shoving an exaggerated version of national identity down the audience’s throat; just the mere mention of an Australian made film is enough to send a cringe down our body. There is nothing wrong with this by any means, I am stating that the Australian film industry as an overall has struggled to gain continual success, in terms of a commercial and a cultural perspective (Ryan, 2012 p.141-142). It is often noted that the Australian public are the harshest critics of Australian film, cringing at our own culture being portrayed on screen. With that I say that the Australian film industry is like a lost puppy, searching to find its place in the world, connecting with its’ audience.

p6739_p_v8_aa

source: http://www.gstatic.com/

At the start of the 1970’s, Australia was producing some high quality, art-house films, with examples such as ‘Picnic at Hanging Rock’ and ‘Storm Boy’. These films were often described as films for art’s sake purposes and part of a cultural crusade to foster ‘Australian Stories’ to the public audience. Part of a political policy introduced by the Whitlam government, in 1973, started the Australia Council a body to fund the arts industry in Australia and by 1975 the Australian Film Commission was started (Burns & Eltham 2010, p.105). An attempt to produce quality prestige arthouse films for Australia.

However, the Australian film industry was going through another transition at this time. In 1971, Australia introduced the R rating for films. This saw an explosion of low budget genre films. The 2008 documentary ‘Not Quite Hollywood’ discusses the production these of genre films and the term ‘Ozploitation’. A term that was coined by the documentary referring to the exaggerated niche genre films that exploited cultural trends.

91x2btg27cdl-_sy445_

source: https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com

3 types of films were overly exploited during this period were, horror, sex comedy and actions features. As with the 10BA tax subsidies set up by the Fraser government in 1981, saw these ‘Ozploitation’ films continue from the early 1970’s well into the 1980’s (Burns & Eltham, 2010 p.105). These types of films have come under scrutiny from many Australian film scholars as not being culturally relevant or appropriate for the Australian film industry. The idea of a genre film, has been describes as the vein of Hollywood films and associated with commercialism and box office results (Ryan, 2012 pp.141-143). A genre film provides a contract with the audience about what elements such as plot lines, characters and themes they can expect from the film. A genre film is much easier to market to the public, unlike and Australian genre film were the audience isn’t given that contract about what they are seeing. As the title suggests ‘Not quite Hollywood’ this period was an attempt to capitalise on genre films from Hollywood and become successful, to which these films will always have a place in Australian film industry. As described by scholar Brain Macfarlane there has always been a presence of genre on Australian films and we owe genre recognition as some of the most successful Australian films have been genre films, Crocodile Dundee and Mad Max for example (Ryan, 2012 p.143).

So, in conclusion I recommend that we continue to utilise genre films blueprint as well as our own Australian quirkiness that have been used to advantage and make films that the audience can respond well to, and with that we can redefine what our film industry identity can be.

 

Reference:

Burns, A & Eltham, B 2010, ‘Boom and bust in Australian screen policy: 10BA, the Film Finance Corporation and Hollywood’s ‘race to the bottom’ ‘, Media international Australia, no. 136, pp. 103-118

Ryan, M D 2012, ‘A silver bullet for Australian cinema? genre movies and the audience debate’, Studies in Australasian cinema, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 141-157

Australian Film industry – financial bust? or cultural must?

BCM330, Uncategorized

If you were to ask the question; what is wrong with the film industry in Australia? You would be hard pressed to pinpoint exactly what the problem is. Australians love to consume content; whether it be at the movies, on television, via streaming services or on the internet. Though when it comes to consuming Australian-made content, we are not so eager. During the 2000’s decade 90% of all content was foreign produced (Burns & Eltham, 2010 p.103). Australia has had a long history of terrific film-making, from high-praised arthouse films such as ‘Man from Snowy River’ and ‘Picnic at Hanging Rock’ to cult classic comedies like ‘The Castle’ and ‘Muriel’s Wedding’. However, the history of Australian cinema success has been very sporadic since the 1970’s, with many highs and lows. Australian content in the past twenty years has averaged making up for less than 5 per cent of all box office revenue in Australian cinemas. Australian content hit a major low in 2016, with just 1.9% accounted at the box office. It is these kinds of statistics that put a lot of debate about whether the Australian film industry is succeeding and worth funding? There is uncertainty surrounding what it means if a film has market failure, is it based on financial factors or do Australian films play a larger role in society, to help construct our cultural identity?

4yptkoorgkkywmz82b6no2agvzh

source: empireonline.com.

Market failure in commercial terms, means a film is a box office flop. The money put into making the film was not returned in revenue from box office sales. Australian films are continuously plagued by this and yet are still being produced. How did we go from the glory days in the 1980’s where such films like ‘Crocodile Dundee’ helped Australian content account for 23 percent at the box office compared to the measly 1.9 per cent in seen in 2016? An argument that comes from article ‘More Than Ballyhoo’ discusses how the Australian audience has become Americanised. The article looks back at history to show how Australian content consuming habits have been formed. In 1923, the head of the Motion Picture Producers and the Distributers of America utilised Hollywood’s platform to sell ‘the purposes, the ideals, the accomplishments, the opportunities and the life of America’ to the rest of the world with American made films (Bowles, Maltby, Verhoeven & Walsh 2007, p99). Though seen as an ambitious attitude by many, the slow growing consumption of American culture began speaking for itself. Australian cinema audiences were adapting to American trends. For instance, Australian moviegoers dressed as cowboys when watching western films, women’s magazines showed how to style hair like the famous Hollywood actresses. American catchphrases and one-liners also began to become part of everyday conversation amongst Australian culture (Bowles, Maltby, Verhoeven & Walsh 2007, p98). Americanisation has helped create an Australian cultural identity that is obsessed consuming American content and thus creating our cinema identity.

3e5db2d560ac4dedac018d076c242f18_18

source: Aljazeera.com

How have we allowed this to happen?

In this opinion, it is due to the inequality of distribution of content. Australian films are bound to fail if they are not available for the public to access.  The American film market is noted the prime market to recognise a films popularity. A film’s box office success in the American market is used as a guide for further potential success in overseas markets, in this case Australia (Bowles, Maltby, Verhoeven & Walsh 2007, p99). These films are promoted much heavier than Australian films with expensive marketing budgets. They are typically released at peak times, for example, the Christmas period and school holidays. A 2015 report from Screen Australia discusses some of the issues in the cinema industry that are affecting the distribution of Australian content. Increasing competition from other platforms, television, DVDs, internet and streaming services have made it harder for Cinema complexes to get people in to the cinemas. The cinemas negotiate with the distributors to how many screens and sessions the content will be played at. Using box office success from overseas releases and successes from similar genre films to determine potential revenue return. The amount of content generated continues to grow, an average of 398 films released to cinemas each year, with only around 25 being Australian made. This means that the cinema ‘shelf space’ is tight. As the Hollywood, big budget films take more screens because they continue to produce more revenue, Australian films have been pushed aside. In the last ten years, the amount of Australian films being screened at less than one hundred cinemas has doubled. Independent and arthouse cinemas are most likely to take on Australian films however in very scattered locations making it very inaccessible for many. This argument aids to why the Australian film industry is going through considered market place failure.

ozflix-australian-movies-supplied

source: edge.alluremedia.com

As the Australian film industry continues to struggle and be tainted as a continual financial bust, we continue to cultivate our legacy as Australians. Films not for profit but for the greater good. It is important that we continue to protect and fund the film industry. It is no secret that thought of an Australian film makes us weary, we as an audience are very harsh critics. However, when it comes to the local box office, it’s our own Australian-ness that has delivers success. Films like ‘Crocodile Dundee’, ‘Priscilla, Queen of the Desert’ and ‘Muriel’s Wedding’ all had distinct cultural themes and characters that were unmistakably Australian, however had that balance to be well received by domestic audiences as well as achieve universal appeal for international audiences (Ryan, 2012 p. 150). A 2011 survey by Screen Australia showed that people’s attitudes towards Australian produced content were quite positive. Over one thousand people surveyed showed ninety-one percent felt it was very important to have Australian narrative content being produced. The research showed that people found it important that Australian stories and culture were portrayed in film; and that more should be done to stop the bombardment of American content at cinemas. One finding was the surveyed, found that people love that the film industry provides employment and generates money in the economy. This was also highlighted in the article ‘Australian films at Large’, highlighting that success of film can be the economic benefits it provides to those in the film making industry as well as a boost to the tourism industry (Verhoeven, Davidson & Coate 2015, pp 9-10).

1320076800000

source: smh.com.au

In this opinion piece, I recommend that the Australian film industry taps back into the Australianness culture of films that made them easily translatable for overseas audiences to enjoy also and to not be afraid of genre films. Genre films are typically more commercially successful and the audience have a better understanding what they’re about to consume. There is a way for genre and Australian identity to co-exist in film. It is this way the film industry can begin to become more profitable and the cultural stigma against Australian films can be eased. The film industry would best be operated through private investment as shown that the top three Australian films of all time (The Story of the Kelly Gang, Crocodile Dundee and Mad Max) were all privately made with no government aid. By operating a profitable film industry, we can assure a sustainable workforce for those in the industry and ensure Australian cultural identity can be brought to life on screen.

Reference:

Bowles, K., Maltby, R., Verhoeven, D. & Walsh, M. 2007, ‘More than ballyhoo?: The importance of understanding film consumption in Australia’, Metro : media & education magazine, no. 152, pp. 96-101

Burns, Alex & Eltham, Ben 2010, ‘Boom and bust in Australian screen policy: 10BA, the Film Finance Corporation and Hollywood’s ‘race to the bottom’ ‘, Media international Australia, no. 136, pp. 103-118

Ryan, Mark David 2012, ‘A silver bullet for Australian cinema? genre movies and the audience debate’, Studies in Australasian cinema, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 141-157

Verhoeven, D., Davidson, A. & Coate, B. 2015, ‘Australian films at large: expanding the evidence about Australian cinema performance’, Studies in Australasian cinema, vol. 9, no. 1, pp. 7-20