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ACS South Australian Branch


April 2021

From the Pres
Book Now - National ACS Awards for Cinematography
Membership Category Changes
SA Screen Industry Technical Careers Day
Profile - Steve Russell
From the Pres

The 51st National Awards for Cinematography are fast approaching proudly presented by Fujinon Fujifilm. They are being held in Canberra on May 1 from 6pm until 11pm in the National Gallery and will be MC'd by Ray Martin. The dress code is Black Tie and it proves to be a great night of good food, wine, plenty of Awards and lots of catch ups with other cinematographers, their wives, friends and ACS sponsors from all over Australia. Definitely not a night to be missed!

There are various satellite events happening including Meet the Nominees screening and Q&A moderated by Kim Batterham ACS on the Saturday morning 10am to 12:30pm, this brings many nominated cinematographers from across  a broad range of genres. Book Meet the Nominees now.

On the Friday night before our awards PANAVISION presents Q&A Screening of "High Ground" with Director Stephen Johnson and Cinematographer Andrew Commis ACS moderated by Kim Batterham ACS @ Palace Electric Cinema from 6pm until 9:30pm With thanks to Panavision, Maxo, Bunya, Savage Films and Madman Films.
 Book it Now.  This is followed by a free Rosco / Leitz Pub Night @ Speakeasy Bar in the QT Hotel from 9:30pm until 11:50pm. Book the Pub Night Now.
On the Sunday morning following the awards the National AGM will be held 10am to 3pm, your two SA representatives attending will be Mylene Ludgate and myself. It will be held at the NFSA, Ngunnawal Room, McCoy Circuit, Acton ACT 2601. 
The National awards are the highlight on the ACS calendar so I encourage you to attend.

Book 51st National Awards for Cinematography now!

If you are looking for a hotel for your stay in Canberra during the Awards the ACS has arranged a special price at QT Hotel for our members. Just click this link to find out more info and to book. Shuttle buses will depart QT Hotel at 5.30pm, 5.50pm, with return services to the QT Hotel at 11.30pm and 12.00pm.
Membership Categories Change
Please note: Some ACS Membership Categories were changed in a 2017 draft update to our Constitution and were put into usage before this was lodged with ASIC.  Since then the ACS has become aware that we are required by law to use the membership categories that are lodged with the corporate regulator because they relate to corporate voting rights.  We have also learned that there are some legal problems with the proposed new category names and so are returning to the usage of the existing category names.  Those who are currently “Camera Crew” will return to be “Active” members and “Cinematographer” members will return to “Full”. These changes are already reflected on the ACS website and on the downloadable Membership Application and when you receive your next invoice for membership dues at the end of May or early June you will notice the category name has reverted. Apologies for any confusion that may occur. Click this link to go the ACS Membership page on our website. 
SA Screen Industry Technical Careers Day
The SA Screen Industry Technical Careers Open Day on Saturday 17 April is a chance for skilled SA workers – including those already in the screen industry –  to discover the many career pathways available in South Australia's screen sector, and how their skills and experience could translate into an exciting new role.
South Australia’s screen industry is booming, and with so much production on the horizon there’s a growing demand for skilled professional screen workers across all departments - from camera, to set design and even accounting.
This Open Day presents a rare opportunity to meet and hear from top SA screen industry experts to learn about the various jobs available, career pathways and skills required, and is aimed both at SA screen workers looking to transition to a new role within the sector, as well as skilled South Australian workers from adjacent industries including:
  • theatre and performing arts,
  • events,
  • festivals,
  • visual arts, craft and design,
  • photography,
  • TV and broadcasting,
  • audio and sound recording,
  • and more!
The SA Screen Industry Technical Careers Open Day is proudly presented by the South Australian Film Corporation as part of our ongoing initiatives to grow South Australia’s skills base to accommodate the demand for crew and take advantage of opportunities for jobs and growth for South Australians.

Adelaide Studios
South Australian Film Corporation, 1 Mulberry Rd Glenside SA 5065

Saturday, 17 April
Various career information sessions running from 9.00am to 2.00pm

Learn about career pathways available in South Australia's screen sector, and how your skills and experience could translate into an exciting new role in the screen industry.
Please note: this free open day is specifically aimed at skilled workers and professionals either from the screen industry or adjacent industries with transferable skills and is not for students or general public.

Find out more and register via this link
Profile Steve Russell

Not all ACS members are cinematographers, we have fourteen Associate members including Producers, Gaffers, Sponsors, Educators & even a Unit Manager so let's hear from him.

Gidday Steve, tell me how did you come to work in the film industry?

It was all your fault Ernie! In the early 90's you asked my wife Kelly and I to provide catering on your commercials for Great Southern Films Adelaide. Eventually we gave up catering because of the horrible hours you got us to work and our teenage kids had to get to school and there wasn't a bus service in Hahndorf. Besides, catering is so bloody stressful!

So tell us what does a Unit Manager do?
Well we're generally first on set as we provide a base where meals can be had, we provide toilets, set up so make up and wardrobe can do their thing, set up lights if it's dark, some power and most importantly that first coffee or tea of the day. Often we are the last to leave set too!

Have you ever worked in another profession?
Well how about a butcher, chicken farmer, wool classer and brick paver to name but a few. I've been involved in Unit for well over twenty years now after working on a two week Tourism SA TVC with you where we travelled all over SA. That shoot was fun and really got me hooked!

Have you had any crew or cinematographers influence you in any way?
I think I may have been under the influence with some! Seriously though, you for one, Producers Leona Cichon and Paula Smith, Gaffer Graeme Shelton, Director Roh Smith and cinematographers including Ben Dowie, Miles Rowland, Jules Wurm and many more. I've met and worked with so many great crew it's impossible to name them all and I certainly don't want to offend anyone!

Do you work overseas at all or only in Oz?
Only in South Australia and I particularly love working in the country and the Flinders Ranges. In fact that's what is amazing about filming, the incredible locations you get to go to. Pic: Unit in the bush.

What is your most interesting / memorable project?
Ten Canoes definitely! It was Directed by Rolf de Heer and DoP'd by Ian Jones ACS. It was really tough, shot in Arnhem Land, millions of mozzies, crocs and I did Unit, some catering including butchering our meat and did a bit of everything really just like the rest of the crew. It was really a team effort.

Have you ever made a major mistake on a shoot?

You bet! Once I got lost at 3am going to a shoot on the salt lake at Lake Gardiner. I was following the caterers thinking they knew where to go but they didn't! That's the last time I followed them!! Pic: Shooting on Lake Gardiner, not a bad location hey!

What do you think of the changes / challenges in the film industry?
The changes in the industry are great. Drones are amazing. The accessibility and ease of digital cameras has certainly made a lot of shoots go smoothly. Still it's the crew who really make it all work, it's amazing how you can bring so many different people together for a production and they all work together harmoniously most of the time. Pic: Unit on the beach, lunch is served.

What's your next job?
It's whenever the phone rings! Actually I received a call on the way to this interview and it was for a six week local production, it's not locked in yet but I'm feeling confident we'll be on it.

What's your favourite on set snack?
I don't have one as I'm feeding the rest of the crew theirs, ahh the sacrifices I make! I'm not much of a grazer but I can tell you the most favourite snack for everyone else is Chicken Crimpy Shapes. Pic: Unit set up on the road as there was nowhere else for it.

Steve how come you became a member of the ACS?
Well again it's your fault Ernie and I can blame Graeme Shelton too!  After we had a long lunch together you both suggested I join and I thought why not, I like cinematographers after all. I realised that I'd catch up with like minded people, learn something and enjoy the social side of things. The SA branch seems to have great camaraderie amongst its members and is very inclusive and accepting.

Tell us something about yourself that not many people know.
I love fishing, cooking, my dog Peppa, my grandkids, oh and my wife Kel!  Phew that was close! Pic: One of Steve's favourite pastimes, out in the boat fishing.

Ok, how about your fav Film, TV or SVOD?
Fav Film:  Easy, The Big Lebowski. Fav TV show:  Well because of the grandkids it's got to be Bluey and SVOD: Well that would be a toss up between Fargo, The Money Heist or Billiards.

Thanks for being interviewed Steve and many thanks for looking after me and all the other crew so well over the years.

ACS Facebook Group

Current financial ACS members are welcome to join our Facebook group. Members can post their work, connect across states, link to events, ask for advice, and put up equipment for sale, etc. To join, follow the link below and request to join, and one of your local committee members can approve your request. If you're not a member please don't apply as we really don't want to have to reject you. Thanks.

Upcoming Dates


April 12 Committee Meeting
April 30 1800-2130
PANAVISION presents Q&A Screening of "High Ground" with Director Stephen Johnson and Cinematographer Andrew Commis ACS moderated by Kim Batterham ACS @ Palace Electric Cinema
2130-1150 Rosco / Leitz Pub Night @ Speakeasy Bar in QT Hotel
May 1 1000-1230 Meet the Nominees Q&A moderated by Kim Batterham ACS
May 1 1300-1345 ARRI Australia and ARRISCAN Presents: Peter Richards from FIXAFILM talking about film restoration.
1800-2300 51st National ACS Awards for Cinematography in Canberra
May 2 1000-1500 National AGM in ACT
May 3 Committee Meeting
May 30 Membership Invoices
June 1 Membership fees Due
June 7 Committee Meeting
July 5 Committee Meeting
August 1 - 21 Awards Entry Window
August 16 SA AGM
September 1 Accreditation Window Opens
September 6 Committee Meeting
September 30 Accreditation Window Closes
October 4 Committee Meeting
November 1 Committee Meeting
November 6 41st SA & WA Awards for Cinematography in Adelaide
December 6  Committee Meeting
December 14 Christmas Drinks

South Australia Major Sponsor
South Australian Film Corporation logo

South Australia Gold Sponsors
AADC logo        AMPCO Studios logo        Kojo logo        Pro AV Solutions logo

South Australia Silver Sponsors
Anifex logo        Best FX logo        Digital Pigeon logo        Media Resource Centre logo        Picture Hire Australia logo

South Australia Bronze Sponsor
Websters logo

National Major Sponsor
Fujifilm Australia logo

National Platinum Sponsors
Black Magic Design logo        Canon logo        Panasonic logo        Panavision logo        Silver Track Digital logo
Sony logo        The Post Lounge logo

National Gold Sponsors
AFTRS logo        ARRI Australia logo        C R Kennedy logo        Kayell Australia logo        Leitz Cine Wetzlar logo
Lemac logo        Lighthouse Rentals logo        Miller Australia logo        Showreel Finder logo        SUNSTUDIOS logo
VA Hire logo        Well Above logo

National ACS CineKids Sponsor
Videocraft logo

National Bronze Sponsors
Blonde Robot logo        Camerahire logo        Dragon Image logo        RED logo        Rosco logo
Rotor Head logo        Sura logo        Vimo Cine logo

National Supporters
AACTA logo        Black Bishop logo        MPIBS logo        NFSA logo        Stage & Screen logo

South Australian Branch
Australian Cinematographers Society
PO Box 212, KENT TOWN, SA 5071

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