New multi-million dollar initiative to help develop world-class Australian film and TV scripts

29 August, 2016

The Australian Writers’ Guild (AWG) and one of Australia’s leading screenwriters have joined forces in a new multi-million dollar initiative to find, develop and promote talented Australian screenwriters.

Scripted Ink. is a joint initiative between the AWG and Shane Brennan, the Australian writer and producer behind the hit US series NCIS: Los Angeles.

More than $1 million will be invested in Scripted Ink. in its first year to develop film and television projects written by both up-and-coming and experienced Australian screenwriters with further investments over the following two years.

Shane Brennan, creator of the hit US crime series NCIS: Los Angeles, said the project is a world first.

“This is an important initiative that puts screenwriters at the centre of the process,” he said. “This initiative will hopefully see a change in the way scripted television is developed in this country,” said Brennan. “The writers who create the idea will have the opportunity to follow their vision through the entire production process. Currently most writers are not given the chance to remain in control of the work that they have created,” he said.

Brennan said that with the rapidly changing way the world accesses both television and film there is an enormous demand for new content.

“This is a unique opportunity for our industry,” said Brennan. “Our actors, directors and crews are amongst the best in the world. We need to stop thinking local and think global,” he said, “And it begins with the writers.”

Over the coming three years Scripted Ink. will:

  • Identify high quality scripts and concepts
  • Provide support to ensure creative and commercial reward for the successful ?exploitation of writers’ copyright
  • Provide tailored incubation and facilitated script and project development
  • Showcase high-quality concepts and scripts to local and international producers, broadcasters and investors
  • Partner with industry in getting the best scripts and writers to the market, both locally and globally
  • Shape the Australian screen landscape to ensure that screenwriters get creative and commercial rewards under fair and reasonable terms.

Scripted Ink. will be launched in Melbourne on Tuesday 30 August and in Sydney on Wednesday 31 August. 

The first two projects to receive funding from Scripted Ink. will also be announced at these launches.

Tim Pye, acclaimed Australian screenwriter and Head of Development for Scripted Ink. said the initiative is a huge leg up for Australian screenwriters.

“Scripted Ink. is an innovative not-for-profit yet commercially-focussed organisation that aims to shape, build and invest in an Australian film and TV industry hungry for great scripts and great writers,” said Pye. “While the Australian film and TV industry has been extremely successful in the past we need to be constantly looking at new ways to promote the industry particularly our screenwriters. 

"In the US, the film and television sectors have had to set up new models to find great scripts to make drama, comedy and documentaries. What Scripted Ink. does is to learn from the best and then add something special from Australia – the engagement of our country’s screenwriters’ guild and the support and dynamism of one of the best industry minds in the world” said Pye.