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
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]

  • CEO: Nell Greenwood[5]
  • Director of School Resources: Bernadette Walker
  • Director of Finance and Technology: Shomal Parekh
  • Director of Curriculum and Student Registrar: A/g, David Balfour
  • Director of Engagement: Christina Alvarez
  • Director of Marketing: Kirsten Downie
  • Director of People and Performance: Louise Hope
  • Head of Indigenous: Vacant

Teaching staff[edit]

Heads of Department: Krista Jordan, Head of Animation; Kim Batterham, Head of Cinematography; Rowan Woods, Head of Directing; Rich Welch, Head of Documentary; Roland Gallois, Head of Editing; Cameron Patrick, Head of Music; Peter Herbert, Head of Producing; Igor Nay, Head of Production Design; Matthew Campora, Head of Screen Studies; Pieter Aquilia, Head of Screenwriting; Steve Murphy: Head of Sound; Fyona Smith, Head of Radio; Lyn Norfor, A/g Head of Producing & Production

Senior Screen Lecturers: Simeon Bryan, Alicia Gleeson, Cody Jarrett, Pearl Tan, Caroline Grose, Gerard Reed, Gerald Mair, Mark Ward, Natalie Beak

Radio Lecturers: Tony Rasmussen, Jess Campanaro, Dani Torresan[6]


The entire list of AFTRS graduates by year, from 1973 to now, can be viewed on the School's website:[7]


  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. ^ "CEO Office - Australian Film Television and Radio School". Retrieved 2016-12-23.
  6. ^ "Award Courses | Australian Film Television and Radio School". Retrieved 2020-04-27.
  7. ^ "Our Alumni - Australian Film Television and Radio School". Retrieved 2016-12-23.

External links[edit]