Australian Film, Television and Radio School

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Australian Film Television and Radio School
AFTRS facade.jpg
AFTRS building
TypeScreen and broadcast school
Established1973; 48 years ago (1973)
Academic staff
Film, television and radio
UndergraduatesBachelor of Arts Screen: Production
PostgraduatesMaster of Arts Screen, Master of Arts Screen: Business and Leadership, Graduate Diploma in Radio
Location, ,
33°53′41″S 151°13′43″E / 33.8946°S 151.2285°E / -33.8946; 151.2285Coordinates: 33°53′41″S 151°13′43″E / 33.8946°S 151.2285°E / -33.8946; 151.2285
CampusThe Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park

The Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS) is Australia's national screen arts and broadcast school. The school is an Australian Commonwealth government statutory authority.[1] It is a member of Arts8, the Australian Roundtable for Arts Training Excellence.

AFTRS is the nation's premier screen arts and broadcast school – the only Australian education institution to consistently make The Hollywood Reporter‘s prestigious annual list of the top film schools in the world.[citation needed]


Established in 1972 with the name of "Australian Film and Television School" as part of the Commonwealth Government's strategy to promote the development of Australia's cultural activity, AFTRS was opened to students in 1973 with the first intake of 12 students including directors Gillian Armstrong, Phillip Noyce and Chris Noonan.

In 1973 Jerzy Toeplitz was appointed Foundation Director of the School and after six years in the role was awarded the Order of Australia and the AFI's Longford Lyell Award.

In 1975 Gough Whitlam helped to create funding agencies to support the film school.

Academy Award success[edit]

Four AFTRS Student Films have been nominated for Academy Awards®:[2]

  • 'Inja' (2000) Directed by Steve Pasvolsky. Produced by Joanne Weatherstone.
  • 'Birthday Boy' (2003) Directed by Sejong Park. Produced by Andrew Gregory
  • 'The Saviour' Directed by Peter Templeman. Produced by Stuart Parkyn
  • 'Emily' Student Academy Award (2010) Directed by Ben Mathews. Produced by Simon Moore

Six AFTRS Alumni winners of Academy Awards®

  • Jane Campion: Best Original Screenplay,'The Piano'
  • Andrew Lesnie: Best Achievement in Cinematography,'The Lord of the Rings'
  • Dion Beebe: Best Achievement in Cinematography,'Memoirs of a Geisha'
  • Margaret Sixel: Best Film Editing, 'Mad Max: Fury Road'
  • David White: Best Sound Editing, 'Mad Max: Fury Road'
  • Peter Grace: Best Sound Mixing, 'Hacksaw Ridge'

Five AFTRS alumni nominated for Academy Awards®

  • Dion Beebe: Best Achievement in Cinematography,'Chicago'
  • Jane Campion: Best Director, 'The Piano'
  • Chris Noonan: Best Director, 'Babe'
  • Pip Karmel Best Editing, 'Shine'
  • Tony McNamara: Best Original Screenplay, 'The Favourite'


For many years AFTRS was located in purpose-built premises at North Ryde, Sydney. In 2008 the school relocated to a purpose-built facility adjacent to Fox Studios, located inside the Entertainment Quarter in Moore Park Sydney.

A film studio at AFTRS' Moore Park campus

AFTRS is the only screen and broadcast school in the world to cater for all of the specialisations under the one roof. The campus includes: a Full size 5.1 sound theatre (seats 126), state-of-the-art mix theatre, two large professional film and television studios, film studios, state-of-the-art sound recording studios, ten sound editing suites, four screen music composition suites, offline and online editing suites, Video-post department that provides broadcast quality dubbing, HD Avid Adrenaline online editing, Scenarist DVD authoring, web streaming and multicam production services, computer labs, tech store, props store & costume support, Grip trucks with Movietech Arco dolly and accessories, Stand-by Props truck, production design construction workshop, three on-air digital radio broadcasting studios. [3]

Also located on campus is The Jerzy Toeplitz Library, which boasts an extensive and unique collection of items both on-premises and online. On-site, the library holds over 44,000 items, including over 17,000 DVDs, Blu-rays and VHS tapes, 20,000 books and e-books, 3,000 film and television scripts and screenplays, and every AFTRS student film ever made. Online, there are over 75,000 streaming videos.

Courses and admission[edit]

Admission into AFTRS degree courses is competitive and based on merit selection. Places are limited. Current offerings include:[4]

  • Master of Arts Screen in 10 disciplines (full-time)
  • Master of Arts Screen: Business and Leadership (full-time)
  • Graduate Diploma in Radio (full-time or part-time)
  • Undergraduate degree: Bachelor of Arts Screen: Production (full-time)

Executive staff[edit]

  • Chief Executive Officer: Nell Greenwood [5]
  • Chief Operations Officer": Shomal Parekh
  • Director of Teaching and Learning: David Balfour
  • Director of Partnerships and Development: Con Apostolopoulos
  • Director of People and Performance: Louise Hope
  • Director of First Nations and Outreach: Dr Romaine Moreton

Teaching staff[edit]

Heads of Department:

  • Head of Animation: Krista Jordan
  • Head of Cinematography: Kim Batterham
  • Head of Directing: Rowan Woods
  • Head of Documentary: Rich Welch
  • Head of Editing: Roland Gallois
  • Head of Music: Cameron Patrick
  • Head of Screen Business & Leadership: Peter Herbert
  • Head of Screen Studies: Matthew Campora
  • Head of Screenwriting: Pieter Aquilia
  • Head of Sound: Stephen Murphy
  • Head of Radio: Fyona Smith
  • Head of Producing & Production: Lyn Norfor
  • Head of Production Design: Igor Nay

Senior Screen Lecturers:

  • Cinematography: Simeon Bryan
  • Directing: Pearl Tan
  • Editing: Alicia Gleeson,
  • Production Design: Natalie Beak
  • Screen Business: Gerard Reed
  • Screenwriting: Caroline Grose
  • Sound: Gerald Mair
  • Sound: Mark Ward
  • Producing: Cody Jarrett
  • Production: Robbie Miles

Radio Lecturers:

  • Tony Rasmussen
  • Jess Campanaro
  • Dani Torresan


AFTRS International VR Award[edit]

Amanda Duthie, Adelaide Film Festival artistic Director and virtual reality champion, along with Google Creative Technologist Mathew Tizard and AFTRS Head of Documentary Rachel Landers, sat on the jury for the inaugural AFTRS International VR Award in 2017. Nothing Happens, by Michelle and Uri Kranot, won the award, while The Other Dakar by Selly Raby, based on Senegalese mythology, received a Special Mention.[7] The Unknown Patient, by Australian director Michael Beets won the award in 2018.[8]


The entire list of AFTRS graduates by year, from 1973 to now, can be viewed on the School's website:[9]


  1. ^ Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (2008-09-15). "Arts training bodies". Archived from the original on 2008-08-21. Retrieved 2008-10-03.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-12-15. Retrieved 2014-10-21.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "Our Campus - Australian Film Television and Radio School". Retrieved 2016-12-23.
  4. ^ "HOME - Australian Film Television and Radio School". Retrieved 2016-12-23.
  5. ^
  6. ^ | Australian Film Television and Radio School |
  7. ^ "Inaugural AFTRS International VR Award Winner & Adl Film Fest VR Program Packages Announced". FilmInk. 3 October 2017. Retrieved 10 September 2020.
  8. ^ "Virtual Reality Award". Adelaide Film Festival. 8 June 2020. Retrieved 10 September 2020.
  9. ^ "Our Alumni - Australian Film Television and Radio School". Retrieved 2016-12-23.

External links[edit]