Victoria back in action as Blacklight kicks off with Liam Neeson and Guy Pearce

Victoria back in action as Blacklight kicks off with Liam Neeson and Guy Pearce

A record $33.8 million investment from the Victorian government will see the state's film, television and video game industries launch back into action as COVID-19 restrictions ease.

The state government hopes the industry will be able to capitalise on the support and tap into the global demand for content while creating thousands of local jobs.

The investment will support Victorian screen productions and programs, including international film Blacklight which started shooting in Melbourne last week.

The feature, starring Liam Neeson (pictured) and Guy Pearce, is one of a number of films currently shooting in Victoria while adhering to strict COVIDsafe protocols.

Blacklight will employ 340 local crew, more than 825 casuals, cast and extras, 50 local post-production, digital and visual effects professionals, and 30 Victorian businesses ranging from catering to transport.

More than half of the investment will be allocated in the current financial year, with $19.2 million used to attract international and interstate screen projects through a new Victorian Screen Incentive.

This Incentive will target physical productions, visual effects, animation, post-production and, for the first time, video game projects.

There will be $4.7 million for the development and production of local content across film, television, online and games and $8.6 million to continue Film Victoria's local production investment and industry and skills development programs, on top of Film Victoria's ongoing operational funding.

A further $1.3 million will be used to create a trade and technical hub close to the new Docklands Studios Melbourne which is currently under construction.

"Global demand for movies, TV shows and games continues to skyrocket and we are ensuring Victoria is ready to capture our share of that huge market," Victorian Minister for creative industries Danny Pearson said.

"This will support thousands of jobs in an industry that's been hit hard by the pandemic and create a pipeline of work for the future."

Updated at 11.11am AEDT on 12 November 2020.

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