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In the archive
2016–2017 documentary production

Art Bites  | Producer Program  |  Commissioned Program


Art Bites

CARLA AND LISA’S COUNTDOWN OF AUSTRALIAN ART
Producer
Barry Gamba
Director Ludwig El Haddad
Synopsis Two besotted fans of Australian popular culture and art are given free reign and unprecedented access to the work of their heroes in the Collection of the Art Gallery of NSW.

LESSONS FROM A MIDDLE CLASS ARTIST
Producer
Rebecca Elliott
Executive Producer Rebecca Summerton
Director Anthony Frith
Synopsis In the age of music streaming, a failed musician learns how to make a living from self-proclaimed 'middle class artist' and novelty song writer, Matt Farley.

MIRROR MIRROR
Producer
Kate Paul
Director Brodie Poole
Synopsis Mirror Mirror journeys with 6 unique Australian artists as they return to their grass roots and search deep within to produce an intimate self-portrait.

UNBOXED
Producers
Kirsty Stark, Rebecca Elliott
Director Sam Matthews
Synopsis A transgender filmmaker sets out to meet other gender diverse artists from across Australia. Whilst contributing to a multifaceted art project, Unboxed, each artist explores how personal identity can influence creative expression.

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PRODUCER PROGRAM

2040
1 x 90mins
Madman Production Company International Pty Ltd
Producers Nick Batzias, Anna Kaplan
Director / Writer Damon Gameau
Distributor Madman Entertainment
Synopsis A high-concept hybrid documentary set in the future, but vitally important NOW!

A SENSE OF SELF
1 x 55mins
Contact Films Pty Ltd
Producers Martin Butler, Bentley Dean, Carolyn Johnson
Directors Liz Jackson, Martin Butler, Bentley Dean
Synopsis When acclaimed TV journalist Liz Jackson is diagnosed with a form of Parkinson’s disease that cripples her with pain and panic attacks, she turns the lens on herself to make the most challenging story of her life.

BACKBURNING
1 x 90mins
Beyond Entertainment and Blink TV 
Producers Martin Fabinyi, Carolina Sorensen
Executive Producers Mikael Borglund, Paul Clarke, Ron Saunders
Writer/Director Paul Clarke
Distributor Village Roadshow
Synopsis It was them against the world. Midnight Oil brought a political understanding to a musical generation. We examine the life of the nation through the prism of the 40 year history of a unique rock band from - 1975 to today.

BEAUTIFUL MINDS: THE AGENTS OF CHANGE
1 x 90mins
Bunya Productions Pty Ltd
Producer Greer Simpkin
Executive Producer David Jowsey 
Director Ili BarĂ© 
Distributor Dark Matter Distribution
Synopsis The untold story of women fighting to tip the gender balance in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths exposes confronting truths about the absence of women in leadership – it’s 2018, but how far have we really come?

THE BACKTRACK BOYS
1 x 80mins
Infinity Pictures Pty Ltd
Executive Producer Mitzi Goldman
Director / Writer Catherine Scott
Synopsis Rusty, Zach, and Alfie are on a perilous course toward ‘juvey’ until they meet up with a rule breaking jackaroo, Bernie Shakeshaft, and hit the road with his legendary dog jumping team. This inspiring coming of age story follows the boys as they strive to turn their lives around - and the dogs that help tame their wild ways.

DISPLACED
1 x 85mins
Rymer Childs Pty Ltd
Producer Judy Rymer, Lois Harris
Director / Writer Judy Rymer
Broadcaster BBC Scotland   
Synopsis Leading Australian human rights barrister Julian Burnside travels the globe to investigate the role anti-terrorism legislation is playing not only in the lives of the displaced but all of us, as he argues this threatens the very core of basic human rights and democratic principles.

DYING TO LIVE
1 x 85mins
Gifting Life Pty Ltd
Producers Richard Todd, Ben McNeill
Director Richard Todd
Writer 
Sarah Rossetti
Synopsis One lone father has paid the ultimate price with the tragic loss of a seven year old daughter, who became one of Australia’s youngest organ donors. He has lobbied tirelessly to raise public awareness in the ten years since she died, and will stop at nothing until he changes the country’s policy to assume consent to organ and tissue donation for all Australians, unless we opt out.

FINKE
1 x 90mins
Brindle Films Pty Ltd
Producers Rachel Clements, Trisha Morton-Thomas, Isaac Elliott, Meredith Garlick 
Director Dylan River
Synopsis Blood, sweat, tears and dollars spill across the centre of Australia at the iconic Finke Desert Race.

FLIGHT OF THE RHINO
1 x 90mins
Wildbear Entertainment Pty Ltd
Executive Producers Michael Tear, Alan Erson
Producer Bettina Dalton
Director Marc Radomsky
Synopsis In the face of relentless, extinction-threatening poaching of rhinoceroses in Africa, Ray Dearlove leads a team bent on a radical, dangerous and controversial mission to airlift a breeding herd of rhino to Australia. 

FROM UNDER THE RUBBLE
1 x 80mins
Sensible Films Pty Ltd
Producer Anne Tsoulis, John Moore
Director / Writer Anne Tsoulis
Synopsis Zeinat Samouni and her children give their account of what happened when Israeli soldiers came into their Gaza neighbourhood killing 48 members of their extended family.

‘I USED TO BE NORMAL’ – A BOYBAND FANGIRL STORY
1 x 90mins
Over Here Productions
Producers Jessica Leski, Rita Walsh
Executive Producers Kristina Ceyton, Samantha Jennings
Director / Writer Jessica Leski
Distributor Madman Entertainment
Synopsis A coming-of-age story told through the prism of boyband obsessions. Hilarious, heartbreaking, and fascinating, this documentary will surprise you by introducing five fangirls across three generations who have their lives dramatically changed by loving a boyband.

LEUNIG: A TALE IN 16 PARTS
1 x 90mins
Film Camp Pty Ltd
Producer Philippa Campey
Director / Writer Kasimir Burgess
Distributor Madman Entertainment   
Synopsis With an anarchic and life-affirming heart, this documentary feature celebrates self-expression, friendship, life and death, and the power of the imagination to ignite, enrage, heal and inspire. With exclusive, intimate access to Michael Leunig - one of Australia’s most renowned artists - we reveal the man behind the household name.

MAKING MURIEL
1 x 58mins
In Films Pty Ltd
Producer
Nel Minchin, Ivan O’Mahoney
Executive Producer Nial Fulton
Director Nel Minchin
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis Making Muriel takes us behind the scenes as Aussie film classic Muriel’s Wedding is turned into a world-first stage musical. But with the starring role based on director P.J. Hogan's real sister, and immortalized by Toni Colette, the question is: who is good enough to be Australia's 21st century Muriel?

MIRACLE HOSPITAL - SERIES 2
6 x 44mins
The Feds Australia Pty Ltd
Producer Belinda Gibbon
Executive Producer / Director Julia Peters
Broadcaster National Geographic  
International Sales National Geographic  
Synopsis Miracle Hospital is an inspirational documentary series that takes us behind the scenes at St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney and Melbourne to meet patients and the elite specialist teams who are using the latest science and technology to perform life-saving procedures every day.

MYSTIFY
1 x 100mins
Ghost Pictures Pty Ltd
Producers Richard Lowenstein, Maya Gnyp, John Battsek
Director / Writer Richard Lowenstein
Synopsis A journey into the stormy and secretive heart of Michael Hutchence, adored lead singer and songwriter of INXS.

THE QUEEN & ZAK GRIEVE
6 x 10mins
In Films Pty Ltd
Producer Ivan O’Mahoney
Executive Producer
Nial Fulton, John Lyons
Director Ivan O’Mahoney
Writer Dan Box
Broadcaster The Australian Online / Foxtel 
Synopsis In this vodcast documentary series Walkley winning storyteller Dan Box moves into the Northern Territory town of Katherine to unpick the circumstances around the curious  case of Zak Grieve, a young Indigenous man sentenced for murder to life in jail, in a decision even the judge himself said was an injustice. Is it time for the mandatory sentencing laws that led to Zak's incarceration to finally be revoked?

SANCTUARY
1 x 90mins
Bunya Treehouse Productions Pty Ltd
Producer Greer Simpkin
Executive Producer David Jowsey
Director Kaye Harrison
Distributor Dark Matter
Synopsis The inspiring story of a man who survives war, detention and his own demons in search of peace and freedom…sanctuary.

SIXTEEN LEGS
1 x 95mins
Bookend Enterprises Pty Ltd
Producer / Writer
Niall Doran
Executive Producer Madeleine Heatherton, Media Stockade
Directors Niall Doran, Justin Smith
Synopsis Meet some of the oldest still-living Australians: giant prehistoric spiders the size of dinner plates trying to find love in the dark…
Production funding for this documentary was revoked in August 2017.

STORM RIDER
1 x 15mins
Badfaith Pty Ltd
Producer / Executive Producer Leo Faber
Director Shaun Gladwell
Distributor SBS
Synopsis An immersive VR documentary that tells the story of artist Shaun Gladwell’s creative relationship with an Islamic skater crew as they set out to recreate his most significant work in a decade. It will highlight the challenges of one member of the crew, Chadnee, faces as a woman torn between her faith and freedom of expression.

UNTITLED DAVID GULPILIL PROJECT
1 x 90mins
Vertigo Productions Pty Ltd
Producers Rolf de Heer, David Gulpilil, Molly Reynolds, Peter Djigirr
Director Molly Reynolds
Distributor ABCG Films, Visit Films
Synopsis This feature documentary is the latest collaboration between David Gulpilil, Rolf de Heer and Molly Reynolds.

VITAMANIA – THE SENSE AND NONSENSE OF VITAMINS AND SUPPLEMENTS
1 x 90mins
Genepool Productions Pty Ltd
Executive Producer / Producer / Director / Writer Sonya Pemberton
Broadcaster SBS Australia, Arte France
Synopsis Dr Derek Muller takes us on an epic adventure, a world-spanning investigation of vitamin science and history, asking how do we decide whether to take vitamin supplements, or not?

WE LIVE HERE
1 x 57mins
WildBear Entertainment Pty Ltd & People Productions Pty Ltd
Producer Carolina Sorensen
Executive Producer Alan Erson
Director / Writer Clare Lewis
Distributor Cut to Clock
Synopsis When politicians and property developers threaten to knock down Sydney's Waterloo and force public housing battlers to the edges of the city, the locals fight back: their war cry an ambitious artwork, the making of which will both unite and divide.

WHITE LIGHT
1 x 90mins
Gittoes Films Pty Ltd
Producers George Gittoes, Hellen Rose
Director George Gittoes
Distributor Revelation Films UK, Stone Village US, Harmony Films US  
Synopsis White Light is about child soldiers used as gang hitmen, not in the Democratic Republic of the Congo but in the poor communities of the USA, and how their violent acts are celebrated in the rap lyrics of street poets.

YOU SEE MONSTERS
1 x 58 mins
Chemical Media Pty Ltd
Producer / Director Tony Jackson
Writer David Collins
Broadcaster ABC TV
Synopsis You See Monsters is an exploration of the power of art to challenge assumptions, smash preconceptions and change the way that we view the world. It is told through the personal experiences and creative endeavors of half a dozen Australian Muslim artists working on the fault line where art, faith and politics intersect.

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commissioned PROGRAM

APEX GANG: BEHIND THE HEADLINES (working title)
1 x 52mins
Joined Up Films Pty Ltd
Producer
Darren Hutchinson
Executive Producers Anthony Willinge, Jacqueline Willinge, Daniel Brown
Director Nick McInerney
Broadcaster SBS
Synopsis A companion documentary for the SBS drama series Sunshine.

THE ARCHIBALD
4 x 52mins
Mint Pictures Pty Ltd
Executive Producer Adam Kay
Producer Seema Khanna, Dan Goldberg
Writer Dan Goldberg
Broadcaster Foxtel Arts
Synopsis The Archibald is a stunningly visual blue-chip, four-part series for Foxtel, following a select cast of artists and their sitters as they bid to win the 2017 Archibald, the most prestigious portraiture prize in Australia. 

AUSTRALIA UNCOVERED (working title)
1 x 51mins
Joined Up Films Pty Ltd
Producer Daniel Brown
Executive Producer Jacqueline Willinge
Director Daniel Brown  
Broadcaster SBS
Synopsis An innovative documentary that uses new techniques to explore inequality in Australia today.

BODY HACK – SEASON 2
6 x 44mins
Essential Media and Entertainment
Producer
Chris Thorburn
Executive Producers Chris Hilton, David Alrich, Todd Sampson
Director Jeff Siberry
Writer Chris Thorburn, Todd Sampson 
Broadcaster Network TEN
Synopsis Science meets extreme exploration as adventurer Todd Sampson pushes his body to the limits of human endurance to better understand himself and his species.

CAN WE SAVE THE REEF? 
1 x 57mins
Super Corals Pty Ltd
Producer
Colette Beaudry
Director Adam Geiger
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis In a race against time to save one of the great wonders of the world, science reveals a radical new idea. But is it too late?

THE COCOS QUESTION
1 x 51mins
Chemical Media Pty Ltd
Producer
Tony Jackson
Director Ben Pederick
Writers David Collins, Tony Jackson, Ben Pederick 
Broadcaster SBS
Synopsis The extraordinary story of Australia’s forgotten Islamic archipelago and the two communities who inhabit it. One a band of voluntary Aussie castaways, and the other the Cocos Malay people who are seeking to preserve their culture, and assert their identity as the original inhabitants of one of the remotest atolls on earth.

DINO BIRD
1 x 48mins
WildBear Entertainment Pty Ltd
Producer
Kate Pappas
Executive Producer Alan Erson, Bettina Dalton
Directors / Writers Daniel Hunter, Edward Saltau
Broadcaster National Geographic
Synopsis One of the last living southern cassowaries on the planet strives to raise a family and overcome fierce predators and extreme weather in the world’s oldest living rainforest.

DON’T STOP THE MUSIC
3 x 60mins
Artemis Media Pty Ltd
Executive Producers Celia Tait, Joan Peters
Directors Steve Westh (series), Ruth Cullen (post) 
Writer Katrina Tudor
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis Don't Stop the Music! follows the transformation of teachers and children at a primary school when music is introduced.

EMPLOYABLE ME
3 x 57mins
Northern Pictures Pty Ltd
Producer Jenni Wilks
Executive Producer Karina Holden
Director Cian O’Clery
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis This uplifting, warm, and insightful documentary series draws on science to uncover the hidden skills of people with Autism, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Tourette’s; helping these extraordinary jobseekers find roles that can finally harness their strengths.

FAMILY RULES SERIES 2
6 x 26mins
Metamorflix Pty Ltd
Producer Kimberley Benjamin (series)
Executive Producers Renee Kennedy, Karla Hart (co-EP)
Directors Karla Hart (series), Claire Leeman (field)
Writers Gillian Moody, Karla Hart
Broadcaster NITV
Synopsis Nine sisters navigate the modern world while trying to stay true to their mother’s values – in the Rule household, family rules.

HAWKE (working title)
2 x 57mins
Southern Pictures Pty Ltd
Producer
Susan Spencer, Geraldine McKenna 
Executive Producer Laurie Critchley
Director Bruce Permezel
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis Emblematic leader, beer-swilling battler, enigmatic politician: this is the untold story of how Bob Hawke changed Australia forever, for better or worse…

HOUSEMATES SERIES 2
2 x 30mins
Mashup Pictures Pty Ltd
Producer
Mish Armstrong, Rob Innes, Aleck Morton, Scott Brennan
Executive Producer Mish Armstrong
Director Rob Innes
Writer Scott Brennan 
Broadcaster ABC2
Synopsis Housemates uncovers the unique, unusual, and sometimes crazy ways Australians have made share housing work - but could you live in these houses?

KEEPING AUSTRALIA SAFE 
6 x 58mins
ITV Studios Australia Pty Ltd
Producer
Elle Gibbons
Executive Producers Ben Ulm, Robert Wallace
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis 100 cameras, 48 hours…a landmark documentary series that will provide unique insights into what is being done to keep Australians safe from harm in 2017.  From National Security to Personal Security, and at what cost?

MINDSET (working title)
2 x 51mins
Blackfella Films Pty Ltd
Producer Darren Dale, Jacob Hickey
Writer Jacob Hickey
Broadcaster SBS
International Sales BBC Worldwide
Synopsis Mental illness is the invisible epidemic gripping our nation. Around four million Australians have a mental health or behavioural condition. This ground breaking two-part series will address the issue of mental illness in a way never seen before on Australian television.

MIRRABOOKA
1 x 51mins
Periscope Pictures Pty Ltd
Producer Alice Wolfe
Executive Producer Anthony Willinge, Jacqueline Willinge, Daniel Brown
Directors Stuart O’Rourke, Sam Bodhi Field  
Broadcaster SBS
Synopsis How do you effectively police a community where over 100 languages are spoken and where cultural tensions can flare up at any moment? Join the front line of the overstretched Mirrabooka Police Unit and the specialist Multicultural Unit, as they tackle the most diverse suburbs in Australia.

MISS LEBANON
1 x 51mins
IKandy Films Pty Ltd
Producers Janine Hosking, Robin Eastwood
Executive Producer / Director Janine Hosking
Broadcaster SBS
Synopsis Miss Lebanon will document the hopes and dreams, the losses and triumphs of the 2017 Miss Lebanon Australia Pageant in Sydney, and will also follow the recently crowned Miss Lebanon Australia 2016 winner in the lead up to and during the global finals for world title in Lebanon in 2017.

THE MOSQUE
3 x 51mins
Southern Pictures Pty Ltd
Executive Producer Laurie Critchley
Producers Ross Wilson, Nicole McCuaig, Adam Adada, Adeel Qureshi, Lujayn Hawari
Writer Heather Nash
Broadcaster SBS
Synopsis The untold true story of Australian Muslims as seen from inside the Mosque and by the community it serves. 

MY YEAR 7 LIFE
18 x 26mins
Princess Pictures
Producers Laura Waters, Karla Burt
Executive Producers Laura Waters, Emma Fitzsimons
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis Through personal video diaries, My Year 7 Life delves inside the lives and minds of sixteen kids from across Australia as they navigate the transition from primary school and childhood to secondary school and adolescence.

RARA RABBIS
1 x 51mins
Unicorn Films Pty Ltd
Producers
Lizzette Atkins, Rhian Skirving
Director Danny Ben-Moshe
Broadcaster SBS
Synopsis Rara Rabbis an upbeat and colourful observational documentary lifting the lid on Australia's orthodox Chassidic Jewish Rabbis as they travel the country tracking down 'lost Jews' living in the Australian outback.

RIGHT HERE: FINDING THE GO-BETWEENS
1 x 90mins
Essential Media and Entertainment Pty Ltd
Executive Producer Chris Hilton, David Alrich
Producer Joanne Weatherstone
Director / Writer Kriv Stenders
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis The inspiring story of a remarkable friendship, collaboration and melodramatic saga behind one of the most loved, successful, influential and overlooked indie bands in Australian history – The Go-Betweens.

UNCHARTED WITH SAM NEILL
6 x 50mins
Essential Media and Entertainment
Producers
Owen Hughes, Aline Jacques
Executive Producers Chris Hilton, David Alrich, Sam Neill
Directors Sally Aitken, Kriv Stenders
Writers Owen Hughes, Sally Aitken
Broadcaster Foxtel (AU), Prime TV (NZ)
Synopsis Across six episodes, actor and raconteur Sam Neill takes a deeply personal, present-day voyage to map his own understanding of Captain James Cook, the immense Pacific Ocean he charted, the nations he encountered 250 years ago, and the nations that they are today. 

WAR ON WASTE
3 x 54mins
Keo Films Australia Pty Ltd
Executive Producer David Galloway
Producers Sandra Welkerling, Jodi Boylan
Broadcaster ABC
Synopsis Three part documentary series ‘War on Waste’ will take a critical look at every aspect of the issue of household, retail and farming waste in Australia – and ask, what is it about our consumer culture that has led us to become among the most wasteful nations on earth?

WIK VS QUEENSLAND
1 x 52mins
Bacon Factory Films, Bent3Land Productions, Freshwater Pictures
Producer Helen Morrison
Executive Producer Trish Lake
Director / Writer Dean Gibson
Broadcaster NITV
Synopsis The day the Wik won the battle but lost the war.

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