Canberra film companies make new deal with Chinese producers
Two film companies in Canberra have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with producers in China that will see more Chinese movies being filmed in the Australian capital. Canberra has had recent international success with slick political TV drama The Code.
Canberra-based JIA Films and SilverSun Pictures led the Australian delegation signing the MoU in Shenzhen near Hong Kong in south-east China.
The Australians will work with Yuezhong Pictures to produce movies that will film on location in both Australia and China, and could deliver USD 40 million for Canberra’s film industry over the next ten years.
“We expect the first production under the MoU will be Aodaliya Gold, or Australia Gold in English, a AUD 15 million (USD 11.5 million) feature film based on the life of Australia’s only Chinese bushranger,” said Andrew Marriott, head of SilverSun Pictures.
“The production, written by Canberra writer Robert Macklin, will be primarily filmed in the Canberra region and will offer new and interesting opportunities for local film practitioners and support services.”
Canberra has a low production profile against the backdrop of Australia’s broader film industry. The city got a boost from The Code (above), which was largely set in the city’s government quarter, known as the Australian Capital Territory (ACT).
“The Code has done incredibly well and has been sold all around the world,” said Monica Penders, director of Screen ACT, in comments to Fairfax Media when support was confirmed for a second series earlier this year: “Canberra looks amazing so we definitely want more of those kinds of productions.”
Australia’s production industry has been broadening its relationship with China over the past year. In April a large Australian delegation attended events including the Australia-China Film Industry Forum in Beijing, to promote Australian filmmaking resources available to Chinese producers.
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