Saturday, November 29, 2008
Death to the Australian Auteur!
Or so says Bill Bennett in this SMH article.
I can appreciate where he's coming from, but alas I fear I'm too ignorant about our local industry to comment on the specifics. It sure doesn't seem like we have the money to institute such a roundabout production process? In any case, it looks like we now have $197 million Australia sized hole to deal with.
At the other end of the spectrum is the philosophy behind Hugh Jackman's Seed Production. I welcomed the news that Jackman was hanging out his shingle, with the aim of producing four to five films a year with budgets under $10 million.
Says Jackman, "Our aim is to support Australian filmmakers, to stimulate the creative community and provide international opportunities for Australian artists."
In a TV report I recall Jackman's business partner John Palermo citing Calender Girls as an example of a small budget film that was a huge commerical success. The idea, he explained, was that in making these $10 million films, every so often a Calendar Girls would come along and pay for the rest.
It sounds ambitious, but it strikes me that this approach has merit. And with an actor (and 'star') rather than director calling the shots, perhaps Bennett would agree?