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In partnership with WA Screen Academy at Edith Cowan University, the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS) is set to deliver a new writing course in Western Australia. The Writers Room Intensive will be held across five days at ECU Mount Lawley Campus in February 2024.

With the explosion of scripted shows, writers’ rooms have become the dominant model for writing and producing TV series, bringing together a showrunner with a range of writers whose roles are increasingly evolving to include many aspects of producing. This AFTRS course, designed by scriptwriter, script editor, director and academic Dr Pieter Aquilia, will provide a new training opportunity for writers in Western Australia to upskill to meet current industry need.

This pilot program sets out a path for AFTRS, the national screen and broadcast school, to deliver short courses in person in Western Australia, complementing the WA Screen Academy program delivered by Edith Cowan University. Both institutions offer production focused education and training designed to prepare job-ready graduates for the industry.

Dr Cathy Henkel, Director WA Screen Academy, says “I am very excited to be part of launching this pilot program. Our collaboration with AFTRS represents a shared commitment to building capacity in the screen industry sector through delivery of high quality short courses and expanding the educational and training opportunities for screen practitioners in Western Australia”.   

Dr Nell Greenwood, CEO of AFTRS, says “This collaboration is part of AFTRS’ commitment to working with partners across Australia to meet the emerging needs of screen industries in each part of the country. AFTRS staff and graduates have worked as showrunners and in the writers’ rooms of such hit television shows as Heartbreak High, The Newsreader, First Day and The Great. This course enables us to work locally to support screenwriters in WA to develop their careers. We look forward to many more courses in the future meeting WA skills needs.”

Rikki Lea Bestall, CEO of Screenwest says “We are thrilled to see AFTRS heading to WA in 2024 to deliver The Writers Room Intensive program. The importance of building the capacity and capability of our local creatives is critical as our State heads into yet another bumper year of production and experiences exponential growth. Welcome AFTRS!”

Aaron McCann, Chair of the Australian Writers’ Guild Western Australia State Committee, says “Training Australian writers strengthens the screen industry. We welcome this initiative that provides local writers with new opportunities to practise and expand their craft in the screen sector.”

Link to
Writers Room Intensive (Perth)

In this five-day intensive course, you will develop the skills and knowledge necessary to collaborate effectively in a writers' room. Delivered in Perth WA with ECU