Media Releases 2012:
Screen Australia announces support for 14 interactive projects

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Friday 15 June 2012

At the Sydney Film Festival tonight, Screen Australia’s Chief Executive Ruth Harley announced support for 14 new multi-platform projects that push the envelope of creative storytelling.

The projects will be supported through the second funding round of Screen Australia’s All Media Production and Digital Ignition programs. The production fund, which will now operate under the new name Multi-platform Production, supports narrative content in both linear and non-linear forms. Practitioners are provided with opportunities to take risks, extend their skills and explore new storytelling tools and platforms.

“We’re thrilled with the volume and quality of applications we received as awareness grows of our support for content creators to capitalise on the fast-moving digital landscape,” said Dr Harley. “We have both new talent and established players collaborating and telling stories through interactive documentary, games, web series, apps and multi-platform television.”

Five projects were supported for Multi-platform Production investment including two games for touch screen devices, an interactive digital storybook, an app using augmented reality, and a multi-platform TV series.

The projects approved include Time Tremors, a 7 x 3-minute multi-platform television series for the ABC and CBC that teams The People’s Republic of Animation with two-time Emmy®-award winning Canadian co-producer Xenophile Media. This inventive fantasy series sends young viewers online on a virtual treasure hunt looking for valuable artefacts via web and mobile platforms.

The Paper Fox is an animated digital storybook for touch screen devices from digital start-up Torsion Fork Studio. It follows the adventures of the titular origami mammal as he seeks the source of mysterious earthquakes rocking his home. Marketplace attachment comes from Bento Box Interactive (US).

A digital card and board game, Armello is from indie developer League of Geeks. It combines a rich fantasy story and a distinctive visual style as different animal clans do battle to claim the crown of the mythical Kingdom of Armello. Marketplace attachment comes from Surprise Attack, a specialist marketer of games for digital download.

The dirtgirlworld Interactive Garden App for touch screen devices will be produced and written by Cate McQuillen of mememe, co-creator of the hugely successful animated TV series. Cate will work with digital outfit Tequila and will use augmented reality to allow kids to experience nature like never before. Also supported by Multi-platform Production is a suite of three games for touch screen devices based on the forthcoming 39 x 8-minute animated series Figaro Pho from producer Chocolate Liberation Front (Immigration Nation Interactive) with ABC Commercial attached.

Among the nine projects supported for development through Digital Ignition is Granville Station, an interactive documentary from Elevator Entertainment following Sydney rail commuters at this bustling public transport intersection. Feng Shui Master, a game for touch screen devices from developer Many Monkeys Development in which players have to master the flow of elements around a temple, was also supported. Bottersnikes & Gumbles is an animated app for touch screen devices based on the much-loved children’s books by Australian author SA Wakefield, produced by Ambience Entertainment (Tomorrow, When the War Began) and Mighty Nice, working with digital outfit The Playroom.

Also to receive development support through Digital Ignition is Harry Butterfly, a motion comic about a reluctant gumshoe embroiled in a seedy crime story for touch screen devices from Electric Yak.

This round of the Multi-platform Program was highly competitive with 89 applications received comprising 27 applications for Multi-platform Production and 62 for Digital Ignition.

The next round of Multi-platform Production closes on 8 August 2012 and the Digital Ignition strand closes on 10 October 2012. Guidelines are available here.

 

MULTI-PLATFORM PRODUCTION (formerly All Media Production)

ARMELLO
League of Geeks
Game for touch screen devices
Writer/Producer/Director Trent Kusters
Marketplace Surprise Attack
Synopsis A digital card and board game for iPad, featuring a rich and visual game narrative pitched as Game of Thrones meets Kung Fu Panda in which players compete to become ruler of the Kingdom of Armello, playing as anthropomorphised animals from different ‘clans’. It will be distributed for free via digital distribution with revenue arising from in-app purchases.

DIRTGIRLWORLD INTERACTIVE GARDEN APP
mememe Productions/Tequila
Interactive app for touch screen devices
Producer/Writer Cate McQuillen
Director Pete Gately
Marketplace ABC, BBC, CBC (for the TV series)
Synopsis Based on the successful animated TV series, this app offers a range of fun activities for kids to encourage them to spend time in their garden nurturing their own veggie patch.

FIGARO PHO INTERACTIVE ADVENTURES
Chocolate Liberation Front
Games for touch screen devices & PCs
Producers Frank Verheggen, Dan Fill
Online Producer Chris Sullivan
Writer Matthew Phipps
Marketplace ABC Commercial
Synopsis A suite of three games aimed at 8–12-year-olds designed to capitalise on the release of the 39 x 8-minute animated ABC TV series. The games will be in the side-scrolling platform genre, available for touch screen mobile devices, as well as a lite-version to be played online.

THE PAPER FOX
Torsion Fork Studio
Interactive animation for touch screen devices
Producer Joe Tabor
Writer/Director Jeremy Kool
Co-writer Amanda Kool
Marketplace Bento Box Interactive
Synopsis An interactive adventure book for iPad and Android tablets. Not simply an interactive story, The Paper Fox is a ‘My First Adventure Game’ for young players. A charming story with integrated games that will suit a young audience; the humour and unique art style will engage children and adults alike.

TIME TREMORS
The People’s Republic of Animation/Xenophile Media
Multi-platform TV series
Producers Sam White, Patrick Crowe
Writer Dennis Foon
Creative Director Alex Mayhew
Marketplace ABC, CBC
Synopsis A 7 x 3-minute live-action TV series with a Harry Potter-esque narrative that sends viewers online on a virtual treasure hunt looking for valuable artefacts through web and mobile platforms. An Australia/Canada co-production.

 

DIGITAL IGNITION

BOTTERSNIKES AND GUMBLES
The Playroom and Omnilab Media/Ambience/Mighty Nice
App for touch screen devices
Executive Producer Patrick Edgerton
Transmedia Producer/Director Cora Spear
Creative Director David Webster
Head of Animation Darren Price
Synopsis Taken from the classic Australian children’s books written by SA Wakefield, Bottersnikes and Gumbles brings to life the hilarious animated stories about the evil Bottersnikes and their attempts to enslave the innocent Gumbles in their home in the dry Australian bush.

ELEANOR’S QUEST
Robot Circus
App for touch screen devices
Producer/Writer Nick Hagger
Director Kevin Chan
Synopsis A ‘living book’; different every time the reader opens it, dependent on a variety of real-world factors including time and date, weather, and proximity to key events. Eleanor is an eight-year-old girl living in a picturesque coastal town called Seeker’s Bay. Every day her mum gives her a chore to do that puts her into contact with the town’s cast of residents. Every read expands on the stories that bind the community, ultimately strung together by a historical mystery as to how the bay got its name.

THE EVENTIDE
Loud and Clear Creative
Game for touch screen devices
Producer Joel Beath
Creative Director Keith Walsh
Creative Technologist Ben Beath
Synopsis A world exists just beneath the surface of our own where two factions of elemental energy beings are fighting an unseen war. As the Earth’s original inhabitants, the Eventide have grown weary of the human race destroying the planet. The bad guys, known as the Habitites, want to wipe out humans, but the good Eventide stand in their way. Children can now connect with their own personal Eventide, learn their ways, and over the course of an involved narrative, can connect with their society through gameplay, and help them in the ongoing war.

FENG SHUI MASTER
Many Monkeys Development
Touchable electronic computer game
Producer/Director Matt Ditton
Art Director Kevin McGrath
Synopsis In the flow of life, only a true master can control the balance of energy. In Feng Shui Master you keep the forces of life in balance. As the groundskeeper you maintain the harmony of your village as you learn to master the mischievous elements around you. Feng Shui Master is a deceptively sophisticated game that marries thoughtful narrative with unique gameplay.

THE FLOODS FAMILY FILES
Essential Media and Entertainment
App for touch screen devices
Producers Carmel Travers, Sean Bell
Writers David Witt, Colin Thompson
Director Steve Trenbirth
Art Director Deane Taylor
Creative Director Damian Stocks
Synopsis Based on a series of brilliant, rude, funny and scary novels by author Colin Thompson, The Floods Family Files is an app that will combine storytelling, animation, music and interaction for the delight of audiences on a global platform. An animated family feature film is also being developed.

GRANVILLE STATION
Elevator Entertainment
Interactive documentary
Producer Kylee Ingram
Director Sally Aitkin
Synopsis Through the eyes of two Australian filmmakers, this online experience will allow locals and outsiders alike to connect with the intersecting lives of the men, women and children who live, work and commute from Sydney’s Granville Station. Users take a virtual, or perhaps even real, ride on the train – meeting a diverse array of characters along the way and both learning and creating the story of Granville.

HARRY BUTTERFLY
Electric Yak
Motion comic
Producer/Director David Gurney
Writers Matt Costello, Victoria Madden
Synopsis An original ‘film noir’ story about a reluctant and dishevelled gumshoe that happens to have butterfly wings and a life span of just one day. Every day a new Harry emerges from a cocoon in his office to begrudgingly pick up the story. The darkly humorous narrative carries across six chapters and throws a femme fatale, a case and a whole bag of archetypal and murderous antagonists at Harry, all in the lead-up to the trial of a crime boss. Users will be able to help play detective and influence the outcome of the story.

THE MYSTERIOUS LIFE OF MARTHA GRIMSTONE
Two Bulls and The Grimstones
App for touch screen devices
Producer Roe Ritchie
Writer/Experience Designer Asphyxia
Director James Kane
Synopsis Based on The Grimstones, a series of books and live shows from author Asphyxia, The Mysterious Life of Martha Grimstone is a gothic fairytale about a girl who reads dreams, a baby boy with three legs, a mother who sews garments lined with warmth and joy, and a grandfather who heals people with his magic concoctions.

RINGBALIN
Goodmorningbeautiful Films
Interactive documentary
Writer/Director/Producer Ben Pederick
Producer/Writer Jocelyn Pederick
Producer Julia de Roeper
Web & App Developer Katalyst
Synopsis Each year a group of Indigenous people from several different nations come together for a ceremony (‘Ringbalin’) in the form of a pilgrimage down the Murray River from Queensland to the Coorong. The purpose was to strengthen Indigenous culture and raise awareness of the environmental stress on the river system. Ringbalin will turn this ceremony, filled with Indigenous stories, song and dance, into an interactive documentary that gives users the experience of a virtual journey in the company of the pilgrims.


Media Enquiries
Teri Calder T: 02 8113 5833; M: 0408 440 995
teri.calder@screenaustralia.gov.au

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