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Darlene Johnson has been selected by Seven Productions to participate in the first of several ADG Shadow Directing opportunities for female directors breaking in to TV drama.

Darlene’s previous directing credits include the AACTA-nominated short film Bluey and TV documentaries The Redfern Story, River of No Return and Following the Rabbit-Proof Fence. In 2016 she completed a Director’s Attachment on Channel 7’s The Secret Daughter with director Geoff Bennett.

The Shadow Directing program was created by the ADG with funding from Screen Australia’s Gender Matters: Brilliant Careers initiative to get more women directing Australian TV drama series and serials over the next two years.

Kingston Anderson, CEO of the ADG said, “Serial drama in Australia has always been the place to discover new directors in television and we are very excited to co-partner with Seven Productions’ Home and Away on our first Shadow Directing attachment. We hope this will be the beginning of many new female directors working on this iconic Australian show”.

“We’ve always known Screen Australia could not go it alone in our push towards gender parity in the screen industry, particularly in the field of directing which remains our biggest hurdle. The support of the Australian Directors Guild and their partners, including Seven Productions, is vital in creating access to opportunities for female screen talent,” said Sally Caplan, Head of Production at Screen Australia.

“Just nine months since Gender Matters: Brilliant Careers funding was announced, it is inspiring to see ADG’s Shadow Director program already generating high-profile work placements for talented female directors like Darlene Johnson.”

Selected participating director Darlene Johnson said, “As a Koori woman I am thrilled to be the first participant of the Shadow Directing Scheme. It’s such a fantastic opportunity to be attached to one of Australia’s most iconic serial drama’s and to be exposed to such a diversity of talent, technique and approaches to the task of directing”.

“Seven Network is thrilled to partner with the ADG’s Shadow Directing program to support the career, talent and growth of Australian female directors. Darlene Johnson is an accomplished director whose body of work made her an obvious choice to join the Home and Away team as Shadow Director,’’ said Home and Away series producer Lucy Addario.

Other Shadow Directing opportunities with participating production companies will be announced at various stages throughout the next year.

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