Screen Australia aims to inspire, inform and engage screen audiences through compelling Australian storytelling, and this week they have announced $2 million in production funding for eleven documentaries, three of which focus on unique and powerful stories from LGBTQI Australia.

“We are thrilled to support such a range of projects from all over Australia that shed light on a number of critical issues including climate change, human rights, inclusion and wildlife protection,” Screen Australia’s Head of Documentary Bernadine Lim said.

Three exciting documentaries focus on transgender activist Georgie Stone, human rights and LGBTQI activist Peter Tatchell, and a group of drag performers in Ipswich, Queensland.

One of the programs funded through the producer program, which gives producers the foundational funding required to leverage their projects creatively and commercially is Hating Peter Tatchell.

The feature documentary from WildBear Entertainment is about Australian-English human rights and LGBTQI+ activist Peter Tatchell who has affected change by publicly breaking the rules for more than 50 years.

This project follows Tatchell on one of his most challenging campaigns. After a gay man visiting Russia for the World Cup was bashed in 2018, Tatchell was detained by Moscow Police for protesting, confronting Russia’s homophobic laws.

Georgie Stone. Image: Screen Australia.

The Dreamlife of Georgie Stone is a 20-minute documentary from South Australia’s Closer Productions, takes viewers into the life of Georgie Stone, one of Australia’s most well-known young transgender activists,

This year Georgie has risen to international fame for her acting role on Neighbours, but through the documentary, we will follow Georgie the activist, as she changes laws, affirms her gender and for the first-time, gains control of her own story. This project is written by Stone and directed by Maya Newell who directed Gayby Baby.

Another project funded through the commissioned program is Bowled Over, a one-hour documentary for SBS’s Untold Australia, which centres on the Taboo Girls, a group of drag performers who have found an unlikely following in their town of Ipswich.

Image: Screen Australia.

They may have kept a local lawn bowls club financially afloat for the past nine years with their packed-out live shows, but with the impending retirement of Taboo’s ‘biggest wig’ at the show’s 10th anniversary, the club’s future is again being plunged into uncertainty. The race is on to find a successor.

Other documentary projects that have received funding include: a film following four brave Australian stutterers and their families as they undertake a once-in-a-lifetime journey to confront their fears; Brisbane-based Task Force Argos, a police investigative team dedicated to rescuing children sexually abused by dark web networks; and a three-part digital series about the students from around Australia who organised the School Strike 4 Climate rally in March 2019.

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