ABC creates a $5 million dollar fund focusing on COVID-19 support for creatives

Images via ABC

Words by Ella Bazzani-Hockley

In search of some much-needed creative content to brighten up Australian media again.

The aptly-named Fresh Start Fund launched by the ABC this week has pledged $5 million dollars to support the production industry amidst the COVID-19 crisis. If you’re an Australian filmmaker, director, actor, or you work in production, then the public broadcasting powerhouse is here to get you back makin’ stuff. 

The $5 million fund will provide urgent and critical support for the development of visual content across drama, comedy and children’s entertainment, as well as music content for radio. 

Alongside support for production companies that have already worked with the ABC, four additional streams will direct funding to new talent. 

The Innovation Fund will support individual creatives who might not have worked with the ABC before to make visual content across all genres aimed at an under 55 audience. Similarly, the Arts Digital Fund supports creatives with new ideas for digital content, particularly documentaries. 

The Children’s Content Fund will support the creation of scripted/factual television shows and music content for kids, while the Music Fund is similarly aimed at supporting musicians across the ABC Classic, ABC Jazz and Triple J and Triple J Unearthed-led initiatives.

The fund’s organisers are looking for innovative, diverse and culturally representative ideas, and will be accepting applications on a rolling basis from early May. Creatives with high-quality pitches and production ideas are encouraged to apply, and the ABC advises that up to 100 per cent of the required development budget, depending on the stage that the pitch is at, can be provided. 

For creatives that have been unable to find sustainable work during this period, the ABC’s initiative represents a huge shift in our national priorities and puts the creative sector back in the centre of the COVID-response conversation, where it belongs.

Applications are open from May 4, and more info can be found here.


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