Screen NSW announces funding for Stop Laughing… this is serious Series 2

Starting-From… Now! from Common Language Films is set for a fourth season.

Australian prodco The Feds will start pre-production in January on Miracle Hospital (8×30’), which will follow elite medical teams as they use cutting-edge technology and innovation to save lives every day. The series, created by The Feds executive producer of broadcast and content Julia Peters, is one of 19 new film, TV and online productions that received a total of A$1.2m (US$878,000) in grants from the regional New South Wales government.

The Screen NSW production finance programme and the regional filmmaking fund will generate A$32.2m in direct production expenditure, according to NSW deputy premier Troy Grant.

Among the previously unannounced projects are two from Essential Media and Entertainment. The Living Universe will be a theatrical feature documentary that charts attempts over the coming century to find new life forms on unknown worlds. Essential’s drama series Doctor Doctor will centre on a disgraced Sydney surgeon and party boy who is forced to return to his family home in the bush where he might learn to swallow his pride and mend his ways, or not.

Wild Bear Entertainment received funding for Scaredy Blaks, a series for Indigenous broadcaster NITV, which will follow a group of Aborigines as they go where no ‘blackfella’ has gone before: spirit chasing.

Foxtel’s Crime and Investigation channel has commissioned Missing, a feature doc from prodco Evershine in association with Screentime that will forensically examine a high-profile missing persons case. The doc will air next August as part of Missing Persons Week, organised by the Australian Federal Police. Screentime parent Banijay has the international rights. Screentime is producing a second series of Stop Laughing… This is Serious for pubcaster ABC, which will continue the story of Australian comedy through interviews with dozens of comedians and actors.

Kirkland-Morris Management is producing SplashDance, a 26×3.5’ preschool series that will see presenters create a dance studio for pop-infused dance songs, for ABC3. All the songs were composed by John Field, who wrote numerous hits for The Wiggles. ABC Commercial is selling internationally. Also for ABC3, Air Pig Productions is making My Life (22×5’), which will showcase kids aged 9-14 with drama, humour and adventure, while Mint Productions will have another series of Bushwhacked!, entitled Bushwhacked! Bugs. The online productions being supported are New Town Films’ Let’s Talk About, the saga of a man who is broke who starts dating a pregnant girl; and the fourth season of Common Language Films’ Starting From… Now!, which explores the lives of four lesbians in inner-Sydney. The earlier seasons had more than 15 million views internationally.

Also receiving funding is the previously announced Dance Academy: The Comeback, the feature film spin-off of Werner Film Productions’ series Dance Academy.