NITV digital original Moonbird from new First Nations producers, kutikina. » Olite

kutikina Productions, the first-ever Tasmanian Aboriginal screen production company has been founded by playwright-screenwriter Nathan Maynard and author-screenwriter Adam Thompson.

The name ‘kutikina’ represents a long history of palawa storytelling, and is also a symbol of accountability and truth-telling.

kutikina will have a focus on scripted content and telling Tasmanian Aboriginal stories, as well as practitioner development for an emerging First Nations screen culture.

Screen Australia, NITV and SBS have also announced development funding for Moonbird, a 6 x 10-minute Digital Originals series for NITV/SBS On Demand. To be co-produced by Rummin Productions, an earlier version received development funding from Screen Tasmania.

Nathan Maynard says, “We are a dynamic people, our culture didn’t stop with invasion and colonisation, and neither has our story. It has grown and with it has grown the evolution of our storytellers, our audiences, and the mediums and forms our storytellers use to engage these audiences. kutikina will have its place in the evolution and history of palawa storytelling by giving our storytellers access to world class film and TV makers.”

Adam Thompson says, “kutikina Productions is a new avenue for palawa stories to go out into the world. We are sick of non-Aboriginal people exploiting our stories and our culture. Through our company we will create fresh, authentic and high-quality content. And we will bring our community along with us, through collaboration and by developing the technical and creative skills of individuals.”

Screen Tasmania Executive Manager, Alex Sangston, said: “Screen Tasmania is thrilled that Nathan and Adam have launched kutikina as the first palawa production company. It is vital that Tasmanian Aboriginal people have the capacity to tell their own stories, so that we can continue to contribute to the national narrative and celebrate the world’s longest living culture. Screen Tasmania looks forward to working with Adam and Nathan on Moonbird and other future projects across lutruwita.”

Adam Thompson is a pakana writer from Launceston. His debut book of short stories, Born into This (UQP), was nominated for the 2021 Age Book of the Year Award, the Steel Rudd Award, and the Readings New Fiction award. It won The Story Prize Spotlight award (US). He worked in the story room for Bruny (Film Art Media) and is currently writing episodes of Little J and Big Cuz (Ned Lander Media). Adam is undertaking attachments with producers Film Art Media and GoodThing Productions.

Nathan Maynard is a Trawlwoolway man who’s written seven full length plays, including The Season, At What Cost and A Not So Traditional Story, and is co-writer of Hide The Dog. Nathan’s plays have been performed on some of Australia’s biggest stages, including the Sydney Opera House. Nathan has worked in TV writers’ rooms with Made Up Stories, Matchbox Pictures, Jungle Entertainment and recently with Guesswork Television on the upcoming Amazon series, Deadloch. Nathan has received multiple awards, including: the 2018 Green Room award for Best New Writing for the Australian Stage, the 2018 Errol (Tasmanian Theatre awards) for Best Writing, the 2019 Balnaves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Fellowship and the 2019 Tasmanian Aboriginal of the Year.

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