ScreenACT, in conjunction with the ACT Government, will be visiting Wellington, New Zealand this week as part of a trade delegation headed up by Commissioner for International Engagement Brendan Smyth.

Monica Penders, ScreenACT’s Director, will lead a screen contingent to pursue cooperation opportunities with both Screen Wellington and the New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC), and use the opportunity to strengthen relations between the two cities and their respective screen industries.

“There has been a growing engagement between Canberra and Wellington which provides terrific potential for both screen sectors to collaborate. We have all marvelled at the tremendous international success Wellington has achieved in film and post-production, and I feel there’s a lot we can learn from their example,” Ms Penders said.

Included in the itinerary will be the red-carpet premiere of Ella, a documentary feature film about Australia’s first Indigenous dancer invited into The Australian Ballet. Local production company Wildbear Entertainment produced the film. Also screening is the New Zealand premiere of Me and My Mates vs. The Zombie Apocalypse, a low-budget horror/comedy produced in the ACT with assistance from ScreenACT and the ACT Government.

The film program will be complemented by a 2-day workshop named Market Ready POD, which is a streamlined version of ScreenACT’s successful Accelerator POD program. The workshop will bring together New Zealand writers and producers from across Wellington and the south island to help them develop low-budget feature film concepts, and receive market feedback from industry experts including distributor John L Simpson (Titan View) and script consultant Karel Segers (The Story Department).

Market Ready POD is being delivered in partnership with Screen Wellington and NZFC. Screen Wellington Manager Katie Frost explained, “Screen Wellington is excited to partner with ScreenACT to explore and strengthen opportunities for co-production and further opportunities for our talent on both sides. ScreenACT have been doing great work through their accelerator initiative, and we are excited to introduce this program to the New Zealand screen industry.”

Monica Penders is equally enthusiastic about the partnership. “The ACT screen industry has undergone significant growth in recent years, with examples of its achievements demonstrated by the program that ScreenACT will be bringing to New Zealand,” said Ms Penders. “ScreenACT is keen to nurture a fruitful collaboration between Wellington and Canberra, backed by partner organisations such as Screen Wellington and New Zealand Film Commission and the cooperation of the governments of both cities.”

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) outlining the commitment to this partnership will be signed later this year.

For more information please contact Monica Penders, Director of ScreenACT:

P: (02) 6162 5172

M: 0437 045 706


Editor’s Note:

The ACT Screen Industry Association (ACTSIA) is a membership-based organisation that represents and supports the ACT screen industry. ACTSIA delivers ScreenACT, the ACT Office of Film TV and Digital Media, on behalf of the ACT Government.