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Tools and insights
Documentaries Investment
& slate management principles

In an environment where the Producer Offset provides the primary means of government support for projects with commercial potential, Screen Australia’s investment and slate management principles are governed by its enabling legislation, the Screen Australia Act 2008, to:

  • Ensure the development of a diverse range of Australian programs that deal with matters of national interest or importance to Australians, or that illustrate or interpret aspects of Australia or the life and activities of Australian people.

In this context, and given the need to allocate its limited funds fairly, effectively and for maximum impact, Screen Australia manages its slate in collaboration with producers and Commissioning Platforms, according to the following principles:

  • Ongoing consultation with producers and Commissioning Platforms about the year’s slate and upcoming priorities
  • Recognition of Commissioning Platforms’ expertise in connecting with audiences as part of their commissioning processes
  • Reserving the right to make investment decisions based on published assessment criteria that reflect the requirements of the Screen Australia Act, and the over-arching aims of its documentary funding programs.

Screen Australia first published these slate management principles in the 2009 guidelines. They are an important way of acknowledging the role of the Commissioning Platform in connecting with audiences as well as clarifying Screen Australia’s position as an investor with public accountability for its funding decisions.

The aim is to balance the Commissioning Platform, Screen Australia’s accountability for its funds, and the producer’s ultimate responsibility for the project.

See also Funding Approvals.