Today’s $400m tax incentive for bringing international productions to be filmed in Australia must be backed up with government commitment to support locally, Australian-made stories, the Greens say.
“Having Johnny Depp and his Pirates entourage in Australia is great, but we need to back Australian owned and made stories too,” Greens Arts & Communications spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.
“Today’s announcement from the Government is a welcome acknowledgment that our arts and entertainment sector is vital to Australia’s economy, but this needs to extend to supporting Australians working here in Australia, on Australian films and shows, telling Australian stories.
“We need the streaming giants like Netflix, Stan and Disney to fund and back Australian-made productions. If they are going to be here in Australia, taking Australian money, they should be helping fund local, Australian content.
“COVID19 has hit the local arts and production industry hard, and the Morrison Government has made life even harder by suspending local content requirements for commercial television. If this is not fixed 15,000 more Australians will be out of work.
“The Government must commit to local content requirements for TV and streaming services to ensure tens of thousands of jobs are not lost over the next 12 months.
“Australian made stories are important not just for local jobs, but for the social and cultural fabric of our nation. Local stories help us make sense of our community, our values and where we fit in the rest of the world.
“Today’s announcement does nothing to address the needs of our local screen production industry. I urge the Prime Minister today, to indicate his support for local content requirements, for both TV and the streaming giants, like Netflix.
“Ensuring films and shows coming out of Australia include our own voices and beautiful landscapes are essential for rebuilding our tourism industry too. Pirates of the Caribbean may have been shot on the Gold Coast, but the rest of world has no idea.
“Foreign films don’t showcase Australia’s talent or icons, like Aussie made films do. We need both, to protect jobs and to build the industry here on Australian soil.
"If the Morrison Government really cares about saving local jobs, they'll reverse their cuts to the ABC."