COAST AIMS FOR BIGGER SHARE OF $6B FILM FEAST

COAST AIMS FOR BIGGER SHARE OF $6B FILM FEAST

FILM and television production contributes close to $6 billion to the Australian economy each year, with Queensland and the Gold Coast looking to snare a bigger share of the pie.

Screen Queensland says it is working to attract talent to the state and its most recent win is a new television mini-series starring Rebecca Gibney.

Screen Queensland is investing more than $500,000 in the production of Wanted and, while the production will be based in Brisbane, it will be filmed on locations throughout Queensland, including the Gold Coast.

The series will shoot for 50 days, followed by 60 days of post-production, and is expected to screen on the Seven Network in September.

Wanted will employ 84 Queenslanders and will contribute at least $5 million to the state's economy.

"Queensland has really been in a state of change during the last 18 months in regards to securing production to the state and also in developing productions with Queensland producers," says Screen Queensland CEO Tracey Vieira.

"We work financially with these productions so we do invest in them, and what we are looking for in terms of return on investment is money being spent here in the state.

"That is through their hiring, by making sure there are Queensland jobs on these productions and also making sure there are Queensland companies also engaged in these productions so they have a really significant bang for the buck we are putting in."

According to a Deloitte Access Economics report released earlier this year, the film and television industry in Australia remains a significant contributor to the Australian economy. It estimates that in 2012-2013 the industry directly contributed $5.8 billon to Australia's gross domestic product.

The same report advises that the production sector was the greatest contributor to employment with some 13,000 full-time equivalent employees and the second-largest contributor, behind free-to-air TV, to GDP worth about $996 million.

Vieira says the Gold Coast is working hard to leverage jobs and new money into the economy through supporting the film and television sector and the Gold Coast City Council has set up Film Gold Coast which works closely with

Screen Queensland to attract and maximise production to the region.

Premier and Arts Minister Annastacia Palaszczuk says Wanted is the latest production in a flourishing local screen industry.

"Investment in the local screen industry generates jobs and boosts the economy," she says.

"Goldstone, shot in Middleton and Winton in May, has generated over $2 million in Queensland production expenditure with a significant impact for the outback Queensland economy, while the third series of Mako: Island of Secrets, which filmed on the Gold Coast, provided around 400 jobs with an expected injection of $7.4 million into the state's economy."

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