Levy to lead Aussie film school


SYDNEY -- Sandra Levy, a former Australian Broadcasting Corp. director of television and Nine Network head of drama, has been appointed director of Australia's pre-eminent film school, the Australian Film, Television and Radio School, AFTRS chairman Peter Ivany said Thursday.

Levy, who also has worked as an independent producer with a number of significant feature films and TV drama series to her credit, replaces outgoing director Malcolm Long, who is retiring from the position after four years.

Ivany said Levy brings a "wealth of experience in screen production and broadcasting."

"Sandra has an enviable reputation both as an independent producer and as a commissioning head, responsible for some of our most important screen drama productions and, as director of ABC Television, she played a central role in the production and broadcast of successful programs in many genres," Ivany said.

Levy, who will join AFTRS next month, is charged with steering the government-funded organization into a new era, Ivany said, with the school's Sydney headquarters relocating next year to new facilities adjacent to the Fox Studios lot.

In addition, the school, whose graduates have been nominated in the past six Academy Awards, is rolling out a new range of specialist courses across the country, principally covering screen business skills and digital media production.

This year, Levy joined independent production company Zapruder's Other Films to develop a slate of dramas. A spokeswoman for Zapruder's said Levy will maintain a relationship with the company to work through the drama projects she has initiated there.