Mining body backs indigenous doco fellowship

A film institute and a mining association have teamed to help young indigenous film-makers turn their stories into documentaries.

The NSW Mining Young Indigneous Documentary Fellowship is a partnership between NSW Mining and the Cockatoo Institute, which is the team behind both the Cockatoo Film Festival and the Dungog Film Festival.

The fellowship is worth $20,000 and is now calling for entries.

NSW Mining was the presenting sponsor of the Dungog Film Festival and is a strategic partner of Cockatoo Island Film Festival.

The fellowship aims to support the development or production of a documentary project by a film-maker 35 years or under that aims to capture their point of view as an Indigenous Australian.

The recipient of the fellowship will be awarded at the inaugural Cockatoo Island Film Festival from 24-28 October, with the film shown at the 2013 event.

The successful applicant will be selected by three leading Indigenous film-makers, Darren Dale, producer of The Tall Man and soon-to-be-screened Mabo, Richard Frankland, director of Harry’s War and Pauline Clague, producer of When Colin Met Joyce and Round Up.

Stavros Kazantzidis, Cockatoo Insitute’s executive director said: “Some amazing stories have been told on ou screens by Indigenous film-makers. The talent pool is incredible so we’ve decided to reach out to a young Indigneous film-maker with a great documentary project that could really use this injection of funds. Just as importantly they will have access to the entire program of films, seminars and Masteclasses featured at the inaugural Cockatoo Island Film Festival.”

Stephen Galilee, NSW Mining CEO said: “Our Indigenous people are a key part of the communities where we operate. THat’s why it is so important to help build career opportunities and prove the social infrastructure to ensure healthy lives and a healthy culture. We want to see more Indigenous people taking part in this year’s event and were excited about giving a young Indigenous film-maker the opportunity to tell us about their life as they see it.”

The mining industry has recently shown considerable interest in the Australian film industry. As well as NSW Mining’s involvement with Cockatoo Island and Dungog film festivals, Rio Tinto offered  in-kind support to the production of Red Dog.

While Beneath Hill 60 producer Bill Leimbach got nowhere with Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton, he found financial support from Townsville’s local mining recourse companies wanting to get involved in the story.

Australian Mining has also been advertising regularly in cinemas with the This Is My Story campaign.

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