Who We Are

 

Jan Sardi AO - Chair

Jan Sardi AO is one of Australia’s eminent screenwriters. In 1997 he received an Academy Award nomination for his screenplay, Shine, as well as BAFTA, Writers Guild of America and Golden Globe nominations. He has won numerous awards for his work in film and television. Other credits include Love’s Brother, an award-winning Australian/UK co-production which he also directed. He adapted the hit films The Notebook and Mao’s Last Dancer for the screen, as well as the highly acclaimed miniseries The Secret River (written with Mac Gudgeon), based on the novel by Kate Grenville. Jan is a member of both the US Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and the British Academy of Film and Television (BAFTA). He is a former President of the Australian Writers’ Guild. He is the Chair of the Australian Writers’ Guild Authorship Collecting Society and has previously served on the Board of Film Victoria. Jan’s service to writers and the screen industry has been recognised by Film Victoria with the 'Jan Sardi Award For Achievement In Screenwriting', an award presented annually to a writer by the Victorian State Government.

Kodie Bedford

Kodie was born in Western Australia, with strong family ties to the East Kimberley. Working mostly in television, Kodie’s credits include Mystery Road (ABC), Squinters (ABC) and Grace Beside Me (NITV/ABC). She made her directorial debut with a short horror film, Scout. Kodie received the Balnaves Fellowship for 2019 to develop her own play with Belvoir Theatre, Cursed! which was staged for the Belvoir Theatre 2020 season. Most recently, Kodie co-wrote and script produced ABC Iview series All My Friends are Racist which was nominated for Best Short Form Comedy for the 2021 AACTA awards and she also script produced and wrote for Warwick Thornton’s vampire show Firebite for AMC+.

Marcia Gardner

Marcia graduated with an honours degree from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and has worked in the Australian film and television industry for the past twenty five years, writing, script editing and story editing on some of Australia’s best known drama series including All Saints, Blue Heelers, Heartbreak High and Medivac. She script produced over one hundred episodes of the AFI award-winning drama series Stingers for the Nine Network and went on to script produce its masthead drama series Sea Patrol. She has been involved in drama program development for various companies, including Fremantle Media (Mr. & Mrs. Murder, Better Man), and Playmaker Media (Hiding, Lovechild), for various networks including Network Ten, SBS, ABC and the Nine Network and has written for The Doctor Blake Mysteries. Most recently she script produced and has written episodes for seasons two through seven of the internationally acclaimed Foxtel drama series Wentworth, which won the 2016 AACTA Award for Best TV Drama. Also in 2016, Marcia received the Australian Writers’ Guild’s Hector Crawford Award for Outstanding Contribution to the craft of Script Producing.

Briar Grace-Smith ONZM

Briar Grace-Smith ONZM is a filmmaker and one of New Zealand’s most celebrated writers of award-winning plays, screenplays, short fiction and television scripts. Her most recent film, Cousins, an adaptation of the acclaimed New Zealand novel by Patricia Grace, was released in New Zealand in 2022 to unwavering critical and audience acclaim. Briar is an inaugural recipient of the Arts Foundation Laureate Award and was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2018 for her contribution to theatre, television and screen.

Claire Pullen

Claire Pullen is the Group CEO of the Australian Writers’ Guild and the Australian Writers’ Guild Authorship Collecting Society (AWGACS). She is a high-impact policy innovator and former media and communications director with over 15 years of experience in NGOs, working extensively to improve the rights of individuals and communities. Claire led the community campaign to decriminalise abortion in NSW and her policy paper list on firefighter occupational cancer now sits in legislation in all states and territories in Australia. She has won awards for her pioneering feminist and representation work, and has appeared in courts and tribunals throughout Australia. Claire has worked as a freelance journalist, has owned two microbusinesses and has represented the legal and disability communities as a Board member. Claire holds a Master’s degree in Labour Law and Relations from the University of Sydney, a first-class Honours degree and several other qualifications. A skilled lobbyist and high-impact campaign strategist, she has now turned her love of Aussie content towards the fight to improve rights and remuneration for Australian screen and stage writers.