Funding brings Hollywood experience to the south west

June 18, 2015

Manea Senior College - , Myles Pollard, Hamish Halket squareAn $85,000 grant received by Murdoch University from the South West Development Commission under the Royalties for Regions – South West Regional Grants Scheme, will give local high school students in the chance to work with some of the film industry’s best and brightest to make their own movie.

The Creative Arts Initiative (CAI) by Murdoch University has already been running for three years in various high schools in the Kwinana, Rockingham and Mandurah areas in partnership with MAP4U; Murdoch’s higher education aspiration building program.

Academic Chair and Lecturer – Screen Production at Murdoch University, John McMullan said the funding will allow Murdoch University to pilot the CAI at Manea Senior College, Bunbury, in late June and early July.

“The film-based project gives high school students the chance to participate in the filmmaking process, gaining skills and experience alongside industry professionals and Murdoch University students,” Mr McMullan said.

Producer Brad Major said they had chosen a theme that would appeal to the students and encourage their imagination.

“The premise behind this year’s film is any student who misbehaves is sent to the mysterious room known as 2.22. It’s there a mad scientist is lobotomising students so that they are turned into the perfect teenager,” said Mr Major.

Director of the film, Australian actor Myles Pollard (McLeod’s Daughters, Drift) said the project exposed students to how much work, focus, responsibility and diligence you need to make a film.

“These realisations will be huge for them going forward and hopefully inspire them to do future study, hopefully in creative arts,” Mr Pollard said.

“The project creates future pillars for an entire industry.”

The project consists of three parts, workshops (that include script writing, storyboarding and acting), auditions and filming.  During the project Manea students will be exposed to various elements of the film industry, auditions, props, production tools, acting, makeup and filming.

The finished film will be screened at this year’s Cinefest Oz Film Festival in the south west in August.

If the 2015 pilot program is successful, Murdoch will seek further funding so that the project can be extended to other schools in the south west region in future years.

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