NSW has retained its crown as Australia’s premier state for film and television production by renewing the rights to host the annual AACTA Awards – Australia's equivalent of the Oscars – for another two years to 2020.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian made the announcement while officially launching the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) 2018 Asia International Engagement Program in Mumbai, encouraging the Indian film and TV industries to film their productions in Australia.
“The AACTA Awards play a leading role in reinforcing NSW’s position as the creative industries capital of Australia, attracting major names like Nicole Kidman, Cate Blanchett and Mel Gibson to help shine a global spotlight on our local screen industry,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“Initiatives such as AACTA’s Asia International Engagement Program further strengthen our ties to other screen industries in the region, attracting additional investment into NSW and celebrating excellence in Asian cinema.”
The AACTA launch event in Mumbai capped off day one of the Premier’s India Mission and was attended by some of India and Australia’s most influential screen professionals.
Ms Berejiklian presented the 2017 AACTA Award for Best Lead Actor to budding Indian film star Sunny Pawar, whose debut performance in the Oscar-nominated Lion earned widespread critical acclaim and made him the youngest ever recipient of the prestigious acting prize.
“NSW has a proud history of working with Indian film productions – since 2008 more than 10 Indian productions have filmed in NSW, generating estimated direct production expenditure of more than $14 million,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“Upcoming projects like One Less God and The Run will no doubt be hoping to follow in the footsteps of the enormously successful Australia-India production Lion.”
The 8th AACTA Awards will be held in Sydney in December 2018.