A U STRA LI A’S IMMIGRATION STORY- FROM 19 01 TO NOW. SBS Television and Online and Screen Australia’s National Interest Program are inviting proposals for a major topical, timely and cross platform documentary series based on the recent history of immigration - the stories behind the policies which have shaped contemporary, multicultural Australia in the 20th and 21st centuries. It is intended that the series of up to 6x1 hours will screen on SBS late in 2009. We expect this series to feature key highlights and a credible, innovative and intelligent perspective on Australia’s recent migrant history – ranging over the period from the establishment of the White Australia Policy under the 1901 Immigration Restriction act through to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s recent announcement that the government will significantly expand economic migration. We want a provocative examination of how our immigration policies have been motivated by shifts in the ideological, social and political climate. The last 200 years have seen dramatic changes with Australia, once populated only by its indigenous peoples, moving to becoming predominantly Anglo-Celtic by the 1900s and now to its present mix of around 74 per cent Anglo-Celtic, 19 per cent other European, 4.5 per cent Asian and 2.4 per cent indigenous Australians. Currently 43 per cent of all Australians were born overseas or have at least one parent who was born overseas. We now have people from around 185 different countries calling Australia home. SBS Television and Online has, at its heart, a commitment to understand and reflect Australia’s cultural diversity. The immigration policies of the past, present and future have helped shape that diversity. Screen Australia’s National Interest Program has a long and proud tradition of supporting documentaries on this topic. The TV series will be accompanied by significant multi platform components: specifically radio and online versions intended to provide a solid foundation for ongoing community debate on the one of the most divisive and controversial issues of the country’s history. Screen Australia’s National Interest Program and SBS will fund up to three proposals for initial development before choosing the successful applicant. THE AP P R OACH: Initial proposals should be up to 5 pages long and framed against an expected budget of approximately $500,000 per episode. In particular, the proposals should include: • A fresh, imaginative and innovative approach to television storytelling. One of the criteria for choosing the successful proposal will be the vehicle producers have chosen to tell the story. We’re not looking for conventional story-telling for this series. Think about what “Who Do You Think You Are” did for interest in family history, how “Battlefield Britain” made history live in today’s world or how “What If’s” approach to television storytelling brings difficult theories to life. • The beginnings of a strong, credible intellectual thread. • An indication of how the proposal could work Online and on other screens including potential for a significant Radio series. We want this series to live on, long past its television screening. • Details of proposed Production team - which must include personnel who have three or more hours of broadcast documentary credits as a Director or Producer. Proposals should be informed by the key values of both the NIP and SBS Television and Online. The Screen Australia National Interest Program works with independent producers and directors to commission projects for its slate that combine five key elements: • an Australian perspective; • great stories that are engaging and entertaining; • distinctiveness in look and content through an approach that is fresh and original; and • an intelligent voice that is insightful and revealing. • reach a diverse and widest possible audience SBS Television and Online is the broadcaster which tells the stories of contemporary Australia in a way in which other broadcasters don’t. How will your series deliver on our Commissioning criteria? (as follows): What stories do es SB S want – in 2009 and bey o nd? SBS, through its Charter, educates, informs and entertains while reflecting the reality and diversity of multicultural Australia. But we want to be different and challenge Australian producers to collaborate with us and to bring us ideas that work for our clearly articulated schedule - while pushing the creative boundaries. Accordingly, SBS Commissioned Content will: 1. Take the SBS audience to a place in their community where they don’t usually go. 2. Present the views of and engage the contemporary, culturally diverse Australian audience. 3. Be demonstrably pioneering and different to any other Australian network. 4. Be relevant, agenda setting and cause public debate. 5. Have potential for other platforms - thought about from day one of development - and, where possible, offer new ways of involving our audience. 6. Foster and encourage new talent - on screen and behind the scenes - an essential role for a public broadcaster. 7. Take risks, offer alternative voices and formats THE TIMELI NE: June 17, 2008 SBS Television and Online/National Interest Program history of immigration initiative announced. Press release circulated. August, 2008 Call out for proposals commence - to be submitted no later than COB Friday September 26th. Experienced Producers and Production companies will be asked for: • Major factual series outline - approximately two pages for a series of up to 6x1 hours. • An indication of the multi-platform proposition. • Statement on how it meets the criteria of the series and its suitability for SBS and the NIP. • Estimate of budget. • An indication of key talent on screen • Key creatives - including CVs. Proposals to be submitted through the National Interest Program online register http://www.screenaustralia.gov.au/nip October, 2008 Initial proposals will be considered by SBS Television and Online and Screen Australia’s National Interest Program for stage 1 development. Shortlist drawn up, interviews conducted with Producers and Production companies, as required, and three are chosen for development funding of $20,000 per successful proposal. January, 2009 Treatments delivered by three applicants, considered by SBS and Screen Australia. February, 2009 Successful applicant notified and second stage development begins - with a budget of $30,000. P RODUCTION The intention is that the series be commissioned and funding formally approved by both SBS Television and Online and Screen Australia in April 2009. NB – Commissioning of the series under the National Interest Program will be subject to approval by the incoming CEO and Board of Screen Australia.
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