15 million ways to get into producing
01 Aug, 2015
Don’t underestimate how important programs or internships and awards are. It’s critical to be recognised by the institutions in the industry. So, don’t hold back from applying.
Rosie Lourde is a recipient of the prestigious Screen NSW Emerging Producer Placement managed by Metro Screen and Screen NSW, as well as the SPAA Ones to Watch, 2015, identifying her as one of Australia’s most exciting emerging screen producers. Lourde produced her first feature film, Skin Deep (nominated for the 2015 AWGIE awards), in 2014 that received an Honourable Mention for Best Narrative Feature at the Austin Film Festival. Lourde is also producer and a key actor on the international hit online drama STARTING FROM… NOW! on its way to 15 million views.
Screen NSW asks emerging producer Rosie Lourde for her tips on where to begin as a producer.
How did you get started?
I trained as an actor knowing that I wanted to tell stories. My break really came from two projects, the feature film Skin Deep and web series Starting From… Now!
How did you get started on a feature film?
In early 2013, my friend Monica approached me with a script for Skin Deep, set in Newtown, and I loved it. We knew we could work well together so started talking locations. Then things moved very quickly. I knew I would need help to make Skin Deep, and through the Wrap Party networking events I met Steve Jaggi who took on the project as Executive Producer. I learned my skills on the job and developed important relationships in the industry along the way. We ended up having the world premiere at the Austin Film Festival where we were given an award.
And how did the web series come about?
In between pre and post-production on Skin Deep I auditioned for Starting From.. Now! as an actor.
The series is the creation of Julie Kalceff who really wanted to make an LGBTI series that explores the universality of relationships, without focusing on sexuality.
By the end of season one we knew there was huge interest so we moved to season two and then season three. We currently have seasons four and five about to go into pre-production.
When did you move to a producing role on the series?
The series kept growing in popularity and with a bit of time between post-production on Skin Deep I moved into production for the third season. We’re now on the way to 15 million views and the experience I’ve gained has been incredible.
What advice would you have for someone starting out?
I learned a lot from working on the job. I wonder if I would have benefited from more training but I know I learn well under pressure. A good balance is important. Jumping into projects is great but it is vital to even it out with practical training. At the same time, you shouldn’t underestimate the skills you already have.
How do you get noticed?
Having a clear idea of what you have to offer is necessary. It’s one thing to introduce yourself but you need to know what it is that you bring to the table.
Are programs worth applying for?
Don’t underestimate how important programs or internships and awards are.
It’s critical to be recognised by the institutions in the industry. So, don’t hold back from applying. The recognition and the skills build up over time.
Why did you apply for the Emerging Producer Placement (EPP)
A friend sent me a link to the placement application and I wanted it instantly.
The EPP is an incredible opportunity to learn from industry professionals in some of the most influential companies in Australia. Already I have benefited from finding out how applications are assessed by screen agencies and how difficult decisions are made in funding films, that experience will inform my work immensely.
The program also gives me an opportunity to work with one of the biggest production companies in Australia, as well as attend the Screen Forever Conference where I’ll grow relationships that will last throughout my career, which I am really looking forward to. .
What do you hope to get out of the program?
The industry is highly collaborative; you can’t get a project up without relationships. Through the EPP I get the chance to further build my relationships while learning from the top minds in the industry.
By the end of the program I hope be positioned as an emerging producer with a tangible career ahead of me. This will require a combination of knowledge, opportunity and tenacity, I have and I feel like all that is attainable from this program.
Any final tips?
Find people you work well with and hold onto them; it takes a unique relationship to work together.
And embrace the different facets of your life experience and what they bring to your work.
For more tips, check out Rosie's work below: