Film subsidies could be better used elsewhere

10 Mar

Devon wk8By Devon Cosgrove, Bond University Journalism Student

Queensland should not be subsidising film production in the state, an Australian film industry veteran.

Glass Media Group Managing Director Chris Boyd said Australia is not making successful or good content and the money would be better spent to subsidise other industries to generate more employment and economic gain.

“[The film industry] does create jobs, but those jobs cost us money as tax payers because we are subsidising the films,” he said.

“In order for you to work out if those jobs are viable or whether or not they are sustainable you have to work out how much money is going in and how many jobs it’s creating.”
Mr Boyd, who has been teaching film at Bond University for 12 years, has been in the film and television industry for 20 years, working in corporate and commercial media production on shows like Big Brother.

He was recently involved in a dispute over the disclosure that the Queensland Government gave a $21.6 million grant to the fifth instalment of Pirates of the Caribbean.

Mr Boyd said the Australian film industry has to be far better if it hopes to compete.

“The only way that is going to happen is if we are making commercially successful or good content that people actually want to watch,” he said.

“Right now I don’t think we are doing that.

“We can’t keep churning out more and more students every year with expensive degrees for industries that can’t even come close to supporting them”.

However, first year Bond University film and television student Ryan Duncan didn’t agree with Mr Boyd’s opinion about student opportunities.

“I feel as though if you put your mind to it you can do anything – Boyd isn’t the only guy in the film industry,” he said.

Mr Boyd said if funding were to continue, however, it should go to Australian cultural content that focuses on the cultural experience; stories told here with Australian references.

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