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Media Centre

02 08 2012 - Media release

Co-productions – bigger budgets, better box office

Screen Australia has released new research on Australian co-productions. It reveals that they typically have larger budgets, are released theatrically into more countries and have a higher international box office than domestic productions.

Co-productions also provide Australian filmmakers with an expanded field for creative expression.

“Co-productions have been a significant form of international collaboration and exchange since the inception of the co-production program in 1986,” said Screen Australia’s Chief Executive Ruth Harley. “We believe that co-productions could be used more often and to great effect by the Australian film industry. Our analysis of the contribution of Australia’s
co-production output to date supports our argument.”

Friends with Benefits: A Report on Australia’s International Co-production Program was launched today by Dr Harley at the Melbourne International Film Festival’s (MIFF) 37°South Market. The report provides information on Australia’s program for ‘official’ or ‘treaty’ co-productions, including practical details on each of Australia’s 11 partner countries.

“In order to help producers identify where the opportunities lie in working with different producers from different countries, the report presents detailed information on our co-production partners,” Dr Harley said. “This includes comparative information on Government support, infrastructure, legal systems, population and market size amongst other relevant factors.”

Co-productions automatically qualify for Government finance both in Australia and in the partner country, directly and indirectly through tax incentives. This not only enables producers to split costs, but also to work with larger budgets than might be possible on a domestic project.

While feature co-productions are generally guaranteed a theatrical release in two countries – Australia and the co-producing country – the report shows that they have tended to go beyond the two participating countries. In terms of international box office gross, co-productions typically outperform domestic productions.

As part of Screen Australia’s co-production promotion, Dr Harley also today launched a new app, Doing Business with Australia, designed for local and international producers to facilitate business in the international marketplace.

The app highlights the advantages and benefits of working with Australia. It is a convenient tool which enables users to easily access information and statistics and be kept aware of any changes to the Producer Offset and Co-production arrangements.

"The app is free to download and is designed to reinforce for Australian and international producers the opportunities that they can leverage from the Australian system as well as providing an enhanced and simple way to communicate these unique advantages to potential business partners,” said Dr Harley.

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