From Aussiewood Movies to Guerrilla Filmmaking: Independent Filmmaking and Contemporary Australian Cinema

Ryan, Mark David (2015) From Aussiewood Movies to Guerrilla Filmmaking: Independent Filmmaking and Contemporary Australian Cinema. In Baltruschat, Doris & Erickson, Mary P. (Eds.) Independent Filmmaking Around the Globe. University of Toronto Press, Toronto, Canada, pp. 71-89.

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Abstract

Independent filmmaking within the context of Australian cinema is a multifaceted subject. In comparison to the United States, where production can be characterised as bifurcated between major studio production and so-called “indie” or independent production without the backing of the majors, since the 1970s and until recently the vast majority of Australian feature film production has been independent filmmaking. Like most so-called national cinemas, most Australian movies are supported by both direct and indirect public subvention administered by state and federal government funding bodies, and it could be argued that filmmakers are, to a certain degree, “dependent” on official mandates. As this chapter demonstrates national production slates are subjected to budget restraints and cut-backs, official cultural policies (for example pursuing international co-productions and local content quotas) and shifts in policy directions among others. Therefore, within the context of Australian cinema, feature film production operating outside the public funding system could be understood as “independent”. However, as is the case for most English-language national cinemas, independence has long been defined in terms of autonomy from Hollywood, and – as alluded to above – as Australia becomes more dependent upon international inputs into production, higher budget movies are becoming less independent from Hollywood. As such, this chapter argues that independence in Australian cinema can be viewed as having two poles: independence from direct government funding and independence from Hollywood studios. With a specific focus on industry and policy contexts, this chapter explores key issues that constitute independence for Australian cinema. In so doing it examines the production characteristics of four primary domains of contemporary independent filmmaking in Australia, namely: “Aussiewood” production; government-backed low-to-mid budget production; co-productions; and guerrilla filmmaking.

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ID Code: 66680
Item Type: Book Chapter
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Australian cinema, independent filmmaking, Hollywood, genre cinema
ISBN: 9781442626836
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > FILM TELEVISION AND DIGITAL MEDIA (190200) > Cinema Studies (190201)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > FILM TELEVISION AND DIGITAL MEDIA (190200) > Film and Television (190204)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division © 2015
Deposited On: 28 Jan 2014 00:27
Last Modified: 21 Aug 2016 00:39

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