The new Board of the Mercury CX today outlined a clear plan to its members to usher in a new era for the much-loved arts organisation – including the announcement of a monthly subscription model.
The Board presented its carefully considered Strategic Plan at its Annual General Meeting tonight, after the association was left in a financially precarious position in 2022.
Co-Chair, Peter Hanlon, from Mess Productions said: “We’ve worked very hard with Mercury staff, members and industry stakeholders to develop a new business model and think beyond the typical income streams for arts organisations – which are philanthropy, sponsorship and grants.”
Mercury CX is a member-run organisation founded in the 1970s and has a passionate membership base. The organisation has listened to its members and is inviting deeper engagement with the community through this ‘one-ticket-all-access’ subscription model.
Alongside unlimited access to standard film screenings, subscribers will have year-round access to workshops, upgraded production facilities and equipment, a monthly Script Club, regular networking and mentoring sessions and a creative screen culture community – all for just $25 per month (with scholarship memberships available in a commitment to equity and accessibility).
Fellow Co-Chair Kirsty Stark from Epic Films said: “The Mercury has been an invaluable organisation for South Australian screen makers and cinema goers since its inception, and at the heart of the new business plan is the opportunity for a new generation of diverse audiences and creatives to connect in a vibrant screen hub in the heart of the city.”
From a screening perspective, the long tradition of the Mercury CX’s Silver Screen and Cinematheque programs will be expanded with new offerings including Heaps Good Cinema, a program of South Australian- made short films, and Cinema Mechanica, curated by local Screen craft Guilds, which will give audiences an insight into the mechanics of filmmaking through the selection of world class movies that epitomise excellence in their craft.
In this exciting new era for the Mercury CX, Interim General Manager Lisa Bishop has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support for the much beloved icon.
Ms. Bishop said: “We simply could not have developed this new business model without the support of the SA Government and Arts Minister Andrea Michaels, who has backed our vision with grants of over $200,000.”
Ms Bishop also thanked the generosity of philanthropists, enabling the Mercury team to turn underutilised office space into cutting edge filmmaking facilities, including a Writer#s Room, Production Office, Edit Suite, Mini Studio, Colour Grading Suite and Sound Editing and Mixing Theatre.
Microsoft Word – Final MercuryCX Media Release AGM 30052023.docx
Also announced tonight was the significant contribution from the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC), which will again provide $240,000 in project funding to deliver the QuickSilver, Launch Lab and Script Club programs for emerging filmmakers.
SAFC CEO Kate Croser said: “The SAFC is pleased to continue its partnership with The Mercury, providing funding to deliver programs and opportunities that support diverse, emerging practitioners to develop, advance and professionalise their careers in the screen industry.
The SAFC has long been committed to improving diversity and inclusion in the South Australian screen sector and boosting industry participation of people from historically under-represented groups, through initiatives such as the Diversity and Inclusion Strategy and First Nations Screen Strategy.
In alignment with these strategies, and with the findings from the SAFC’s recently released South Australian Screen Industry Workforce Development Strategy, the SAFC supports The Mercury’s plans to work closely with emerging screen makers from a range of backgrounds to develop their skills and ensure businesses within the South Australian screen sector are equipped with a skilled workforce.” says Kate Croser.
The Mercury’s new programs commence July 1 and will be outlined in an event aptly named Mercury Rising to be held at the Mercury Cinema Tuesday June 27 at 6pm. Sign up to the subscription waitlist here: https://forms.gle/hwWGoSYh3oH1qkMQ6
Interviews and images please contact:
Kirsty Stark 0422 433 543 firstname.lastname@example.org Mark McGowan 0419 695 487 email@example.com INFO ON MERCURY CX:
The Mercury was established in 1974 and is a membership-based not-for-profit incorporated association and charity. It acts as a bridging organisation that provides emerging screen makers with a pathway into a professional screen career. It is also home to screen culture communities and operates exhibition programs and events out of the Mercury and Iris cinemas. Its objectives are to develop screen makers and screen audiences, through the provision of equipment, facilities, advice, training, cinema programming, events and production initiatives. It works closely with screen partners including the South Australian Film Corporation, Channel 44, the Adelaide Film Festival, educational institutions and local screen businesses.
The new board appointed at the 2023 Annual General Meeting comprise:
Kath Dooley Rebecca Summerton
Producer, Epic Films & Founder, CrewHQ Producer/Writer, Mess Productions
Arts SA Senior Project Manager, ATSI Arts Principal, GT Legal Pty Ltd
Producer, Highview Productions
Screen Student, Flinders University Writer/Director/Producer, Mess Productions Associate Professor, UniSA Creative Producer, Closer Productions