16 April, 2021
AWG President Shane Brennan and former President Jan Sardi AO inspired members in April to join the fight in calling for the Australian Government to regulate streaming services. Missed it? AWG members can watch the panel HERE on AWG On Demand.
Collectively, we can make a difference and fight for a better future for Australian stories on screen. Please email your local MP – copy provided below.
To <insert MP’s name>,
The Australian film and television industry needs your support.
We are requesting:
- The regulation of streaming services – 20% of locally sourced revenue should be invested in new Australian content
- The retention of the Gallipoli clause - allows feature filmmakers to claim for Aussie story elements shot offshore
- The retention of current expenditure thresholds for feature-length content at $500,000 – allows films and documentaries with a budget of over $500,000 to be eligible for the 40% producer offset
Last September, the Morrison Government announced significant changes to local content rules on free to air commercial television and introduced a points system that will cause an annual decline in drama production of $100 million.
The only way to rectify the contraction in our much-loved screen industry is to impose regulation on streaming services that have prospered during the pandemic. Streamers, like Netflix and Amazon Prime, earn $1.7 - $2 billion annually from Australian subscribers, but pay little tax here in Australia.
Based on international precedent, streaming services should have to invest 20% of their locally sourced revenue in producing new Australian content. This will create 10,000 jobs and stimulate the industry growth that Minister Fletcher desires.
The screen industry welcomed the Government’s recent announcement that the feature film producer offset will be retained at 40%.
We do, however, request that MPs protect the Gallipoli clause, when Minister Fletcher proposes a bill in the House shortly. The Gallipoli clause was named after David Williamson’s Gallipoli and allows film producers to claim for expenditure on story elements that are shot offshore. It facilitates international co-productions. Without it, iconic films like Gallipoli may not be made today.
We also seek to retain the current expenditure thresholds for feature-length content at $500,000 (instead of being increased to $1,000,000) to ensure our documentary filmmakers with smaller budgets are eligible for the 40% producer offset. We need to protect this vulnerable but vital genre.
Thank you for backing Australian stories and storytellers. #MakeItAustralian
<insert your name>
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