South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) is a South Australian Government statutory corporation established in 1972 to engage in film production and promote the film industry, located in Adelaide, South Australia. The Adelaide Studios are managed by the South Australian Film Corporation for the use of the South Australian film industry.
The South Australian Film Corporation was founded as a production company in 1972, established under the South Australian Film Corporation Act by the Dunstan government. It was intended "to stimulate and encourage the formation and continued development of the South Australian film and television industry". At the time of the Corporation's establishment, the Australian film industry was stagnating, and the Corporation played a significant role in the revival of Australian film making. Premier Don Dunstan played an instrumental role in the foundation of the Corporation and its early film production activities.
From its genesis, the SAFC collaborated with various government departments and agencies in the production of short documentaries and educational films. These included co-productions with the South Australian Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Department of Marine & Harbors, the Education Department, the Office of Fair Trading, the Department of Housing, Urban and Regional Affairs and others.
In 1994 its role changed, as it ceased producing films and became the government's central agency to provide assistance to independent film makers. The television mini-series The Battlers was the last production produced by the SAFC. As the first state film corporation in Australia, the success of its business model led other state governments to establish similar bodies charged with the promotion of film production and fostering industry development. Since then, it has focused on supporting (including providing funding) and facilitating the production of films and television in South Australia, as well as making production and post-production facilities available.
In 2008, SA Premier and Arts Minister Mike Rann secured cabinet approval from the South Australian Government to fund the relocation of the SAFC at a cost of A$43 million. The project included new sound stages and mixing suites, as well as a major refurbishment of an historic 19th-century building as a high-tech film hub. The Corporation moved its headquarters to Glenside, an inner eastern suburb of Adelaide, sharing the historic former administration building of Glenside Hospital with film production company Closer Productions. The new Adelaide Studios were opened by Rann on 20 October 2011.
FilmLab was a low-budget feature film initiative created in 2008, with a budget of A$4.2 million to be allocated to the production of eight low-budget feature films over four years, from initial concept through to delivery and marketing of the films. In May 2009 the four successful teams were announced, chosen from a shortlist of 14: Sophie Hyde, Bryan Mason and Matt Cormack of Closer Productions; Hugh Nguyen and Eddie White of the People's Republic of Animation; Julie Ryan of Cyan Films with Matthew Bate of Plexus Films; and Ashlee Page and Sonya Humphrey of Sacred Cow Films.
James Wan's reboot of video game franchise Mortal Kombat as a feature film will be the largest film production in the state's history. In May 2019, it was announced that the film series' reboot had entered pre-production and will be shot in South Australia, to be released on 5 March 2021.
In August 2019, CEO Courtney Gibson resigned, returning to Sydney 15 months after taking up the role. A few weeks later, the government confirmed the appointment of South Australian producer Kate Croser, who has had a long career in Australian film and television.
Amanda Duthie, who in late 2018 left her post at the Adelaide Film Festival and became Head of Production, Development, Attraction and Studios, also serving as acting CEO of SAFC after Gibson's departure, resigned her position to return to Sydney as of 22 November 2019.
The Corporation was responsible to the state Minister for the Arts until March 2018, then reported to the Premier Steven Marshall until July that year, when it was transferred to the Department of Innovation and Skills. From 1996 it received funding via Arts SA (later Arts South Australia), until that body's disbandment by the Marshall government in late 2018.
In June 2019, the state government announced a huge boost to funding of the film industry, with a one-off A$6 million awarded to the SAFC's Screen Production Investment Fund. Mortal Kombat is a major recipient.
The First Nations Screen Strategy 2020-2025 was launched in November 2020, in partnership with Channel 44. The First Nations Advisory Committee comprises Elaine Crombie, Natasha Wanganeen, Major Moogy Sumner, Dennis Stokes, and John Harvey.
The Corporation's activities contributed to the rebuilding process undertaken by Australia's film industry, with other states set up similar bodies after SAFC's establishment. Besides its productions that had critical and commercial success in the 1970s, the Corporation's productions helped to launch the careers of many artists, including Peter Weir, Jack Thompson, Scott Hicks, Rolf de Heer, Mario Andreacchio, Bryan Brown, Geoffrey Rush and Bruce Beresford.
Works listed below can be found via the SAFC "Made in SA Showcase" web page.
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