AACTA Pitch: Web & Television Series

In 2018, AACTA launched AACTA PITCH: Web and Television Series, a national pitching competition that aimed to discover Australia's next world-class scripted series for television or web. With audience demand and consumption for new, original drama and comedy at an all-time high, this is one of the most exciting times for emerging Australian content creators.

With more and more original and innovative content becoming widely available through streaming, online and traditional television broadcasting, this is an exciting time for our emerging Australian creatives, many of whom have ideas for great series waiting to be discovered,” said AFI | AACTA CEO Damian Trewhella. “We are excited to provide these new Australian voices with a platform to shine through AACTA PITCH. This is an incredible opportunity for these creatives to present their ideas to some of our industry’s key content commissioners and producers, network build and hone their vitally important pitching skills.

At the event, each finalist screened their teaser and pitched their series in front of a live audience, including a judging panel of esteemed industry figures from the worlds of television, online, production, development and commissioning. After the pitch, the judges met and discussed each presentation, finally announcing MONSTER’S PLAYGROUND as the winner.

MONSTER’S PLAYGROUND follows the adventures of fun-loving siblings Bro-Bro, Siswa and their pal MONSTER! With his rusty and unpredictable magic, a clap of Monster’s hands can conjure a bathtub rocket ship, attract a flock of winged hedgehogs and, more often than not, place Bro-Bro and Siswa in sticky situations.

Real-life best friends Darcy and Seamus, who are founders of Melbourne production company Oh Yeah Wow, also received an AACTA nomination for Best Short Animation for the pilot of MONSTER’S PLAYGROUND. On what’s next for them and MONSTER’S PLAYGROUND, Darcy and Seamus said: “We’ve got a few opportunities at Amazon, Hulu, Apple and Netflix in LA, so we’re going to leverage this win to strengthen our production bible…but also try and sell it over there [in LA] and get a few production partners. The chance to create it [MONSTER’S PLAYGROUND] is quite exciting. There’s so much more that we want to do with the franchise…the whole idea is to just have fun with it; sitting in the writing room, coming up with crazy stuff – that’s the dream!

Darcy and Seamus received:

  • A $5,000 cash prize.
  • Invaluable feedback and mentorship opportunities from AACTA, participating production companies, development executives and screen craft practitioners.
  • Post-production support from Spectrum Films to the value of $5,000.
  • Tickets to the 2018 AACTA Awards presented by Foxtel Industry Luncheon and Awards Ceremony.
  • A year’s AFI | AACTA membership.


BULLDOG’S ALLEY | Jessica Pearce, Sarah Hickey
The filmmakers behind multi-platform web-series DEE-BRIEF hold a mirror up to Australian culture with BULLDOG’S ALLEY. When a small town heist goes all kinds of wrong, and a local hero dies as a result, two women hold a bunch of socially and politically opposing characters hostage in the local bowling alley.

EMERALD WAY | Sean O’Keeffe, Ben Matei, Jennie Tkaz
Set in a Nursing Home, sex, drugs and euthanasia are the backdrop for this complex comedy series. The Perth-based multi award-winning filmmakers behind the series challenge and celebrate what we think and feel about old age, how we view life and when life truly begins and ends in EMERALD WAY.

GOOD GRIEF | Amanda Reedy, Nicole Minchin, Amanda Jane, Natalie Harris, Jess Harris
From the minds behind AACTA-nominated series TWENTYSOMETHING and feature film THE WEDDING PARTY, GOOD GRIEF is based on comedian Natalie Harris’ sell-out stand-up show of the same name. Funded by Screen Australia Gender Matters – Brilliant Stories, the series follows Nat on her rollercoaster ride through the five stages of grief following the sudden death of her dad.

THE MIRAGE | Andrew Ryan
Two-time Sundance Sloan Fellowship Finalist Andrew Ryan brings you THE MIRAGE, a magical motel where guests can request anything they want, from the simple to the surreal. But with two hapless employees at the helm, it’s no surprise that as they make their visitors dreams come true each shift is riled with chaos and a severe lack of clean towels.

MONSTER’S PLAYGROUND | Darcy Prendergast, Seamus Spilsbury
With an AACTA-nominated pilot, claymation series MONSTER’S PLAYGROUND follows the adventures of fun loving siblings Bro-Bro, Siswa and their pal MONSTER! With his rusty and unpredictable magic, a clap of Monster’s hands can conjure a bathtub rocketship, attract a flock of winged hedgehogs and more often than not, place Bro-Bro and Siswa in sticky situations.

PIXEL RAIDERS | Ben Shackleford, Stephanie Bendixsen, Gus Ronald
Based on the popular book series of the same name, PIXEL RAIDERS comes from the mind of Australian video game critic Stephanie Benixsen (GOOD GAME). Trapped inside an un-tested video game, Riley and Mei-Lin must use their gamer knowledge to battle various foes and beat each unique game world within the digital realm or be stuck inside the game…forever!

TRADIES | Zack van Prooije, Matthew Davies, Johannes Beer, Rijen Laine
Having worked with Netflix, SBS, Foxtel, ABC, the Turnkey Productions team brings you TRADIES, which follows the ups and downs of a small construction company on the brink of bankruptcy; lying, cheating and stealing their way out and back into debt while they struggle to stay afloat amidst sexual harassment cases, divorce and the dysfunctional tradies that drink work there.

VIRGIN IN A SEX STORE | Kaleb McKenna, Kristian Barron, Joshua Gilbert
From the creators of Screen Australia funded web-series FOUR QUARTERS, VIRGIN IN A SEX STORE follows 19-year-old Hugh who, desperately saving for a European holiday that he’s convinced will change his life, takes a job at Paula’s Pleasure Palace – his mum’s business. There’s just one problem; he’s a virgin.


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