Making Documentaries in Australia
by Gabi Plumm
(Trinity Beach, Queensland, Australia )
I have followed your newsletters for some time now and fully appreciate the trouble you go to in producing them. The Top 10 Documentary Websites for Filmmakers is great too BUT all of them I think are centered around documentary production in the US.
Do you have any recommendations, apart from the government sources, for documentary help and therefore tips in Australia?
The laws are different and of course the organisations are different so it is hard to extrapolate the US tips and suggestions, except for in the broadest terms, for Australian productions.
Also do you have any good suggestions for treatment writing, or places to go to find good treatment writers?
Thank you and I hope you can help.
Desktop Documentaries | Answer:
Hi Gabi, Thanks for your question and it's good to know you've been enjoying the monthly Documentary Tips e-news.
Let's take your questions one by one:
1) Do you have any recommendations, apart from the government sources, for documentary help and therefore tips in Australia?
We are American-based filmmakers, so unfortunately we are not familiar with all the tools and resources available for you there in Australia.
A lot of what is offered here on Desktop Documentaries is general DIY filmmaking and storytelling tips that would apply no matter where you live. We do try to offer information that would be relevant to ALL filmmakers no matter the geographical location. Some topics such as legal issues and grant funding are by nature more region-specific and will involve individual research.
You're right, the top documentary sites we chose are all US-based simply because those are the ones we are familiar with. We would be most happy to consider adding helpful documentary sites from other countries. Either send us an e-mail or leave a comment below.
2) Do you have any good suggestions for treatment writing, or places to go to find good treatment writers?
The first place to check out is our Documentary Treatment page. For more detailed help with a step-by-step process, you may want to try our Documentary Proposal Template package. It's our most popular download on this site and, in fact, has gotten some very positive feedback from filmmakers in Australia.
If you'd like to hire a writer, we can help you with that too. We have an Emmy-winning documentary scriptwriter on our team who is available for freelance work. You can learn more about our coaching and consulting services here: Documentary Coaching. Just fill out the form with your request stating exactly what kind of help you need and we will send you a personalized recommendation and cost estimate. (Tip! We highly recommend you write a first draft of your treatment/proposal and bring in a professional writer to help you fine tune.)
You can also try searching for "Grant Writers Associations" in your area or something like the Foundation Center here in the US which is a phenomenal resource if you're trying to raise money for your film or any other non-profit endeavor.
Does that help point you in the right direction? Please feel free to post any follow-up questions below.
Good luck, Gabi!
With warmest regards, Faith