Senate debates

Wednesday, 23 November 2022

Statements by Senators

Australian Film Industry

1:54 pm

Photo of Perin DaveyPerin Davey (NSW, National Party, Shadow Minister for Water) Share this | | Hansard source

I bet when you think about movies you don't really think about regional Australia. But regional Australia features extensively in a lot of Australian movies. The Merger, about a cash-strapped Aussie Rules club, was found and Wagga Wagga. The Dressmaker, with the fantastic Kate Winslet, was filmed in Jerilderie. Several of the Mad Max films were filmed around Broken Hill and Silverton. On television, the show Doctor Doctor was filmed in Mudgee, my old hometown. The Flying Doctors was filmed in Broken Hill. Regional Australia provides a crucial aspect of our screen and film industry, and that industry needs our support.

Unlike free-to-air broadcasters, the streaming services don't have any requirements to ensure they make and support Australian content. To be fair, the streamers are investing in Australian content, and I thank them and commend them for doing so, but I believe they can do more. They can do more to support our industry, which supports our communities and our economy. Each of those films or TV series that I mentioned earlier, when they come to a community, they bring their dollars. They shop at the local cafe. They go to the hardware store to buy their hardware. They use local tradies. Sometimes they use the local hairdressers. And I know from personal experience that they use locals as extras in their scenes. We need to get behind our screen industry and look at what more we can do to make sure that our stories continue to be shown on our screens.