Queensland’s Mako Mermaids hooks TV viewers

AROUND 500 local jobs have been created by television’s favourite trio of mermaids making a big splash with Mako Mermaids now filming at Village Roadshow Studios on the Gold Coast.

Arts Minister Ian Walker this week met with the cast and crew on the set where the production filmed the Mako “Moon Pool” underwater scenes in the studio’s specially built water tanks.

Mr Walker said Screen Queensland provided $720,500 in production and development funding towards the project, which is expected to reap about $10 million for the state’s economy.


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“This production has provided about 150 jobs for crew including the director, accountants and makeup and wardrobe advisers, 30 cast members and 320 extras,” Mr Walker said.

“We promised to create jobs at the last election and this government is delivering on that promise, with the fastest rate of job creation of any Australian state.

“The Queensland Government is committed to supporting the development of a dynamic and sustainable screen industry to build the economy, create local jobs and attract investment and skills.

“The original Mako Mermaids series screened in 2013 in the US, Canada, England, Ireland, Scandinavia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Latin America, and we expect the new series will be just as popular.

“Executive Producer Jonathan Shiff is a shining example of the exceptional talent in Queensland. His productions have sold to more than 130 countries, including the biggest deals by an Australian children’s producer with Netflix and Nickelodeon US for H20: Just Add Water.”

Screen Queensland chief executive officer Tracey Vieira said the mermaid series joined big-budget international productions Unbroken and San Andreas in providing long-term sustainability for the screen industry in Queensland.

“Getting the mix right is a balancing act between investing in the development and production of home-grown projects, and ensuring our production incentives and attractions, including the Payroll Tax Rebate, are bringing-in big-budget productions to the state,” Ms Vieira said.

Executive Producer Jonathon Shiff said, “As a company specialising in fantasy action adventure drama for a children’s and family audience, the studios, supported by a highly skilled and creative local crew, have allowed us to build a global brand.

“The traffic of high-budget US movie production undertaken at VRS also provides a flow-on effect for the import of new skills. This against a canvas of SEQ locations and an enviable lifestyle drives a very successful export industry.”