Following the success of the first Skip Ahead programme, which reached over 5.5 million views, Screen Australia and YouTube will team up once again to run a second round of the initiative. Google Australia and Screen Australia will each give $200,000 directly to Australian online talent to create original narrative web series to build their global audiences to new heights.

Successful recipients will also receive the opportunity to travel to the Los Angeles YouTube Space. The YouTube Space is renowned for its state-of-the-art production studios and post-production facilities made available for free to the top YouTube creators.

“The last programme delivered a dynamic collection of online series that engaged people from all over the world and instigated the opportunity for the talent and stories to further connect through mainstream channels. Following a successful MIPTV showcase, Screen Australia wants to back the next group of talented Australian YouTubers to generate more Australian content with the potential for more of our local stories to reach the big audience numbers that live on the online platform,” said Screen Australia’s Chief Operating Officer, Fiona Cameron.

Australian talent continue to be world leaders on YouTube, successfully using it to export our content. For every view of an Australian video on YouTube, there are on average a further nine views from overseas. Australia now has more than 100 channels with more than 200,000 subscribers, placing these channels in the top 2 per cent of YouTube channels globally. Eighteen of those channels have over 1 million subscribers.

Last year’s Skip Ahead programme produced Axis of Awesome’s Axis All Areas, Mighty Car Mods’ Lend Us a Ride, Sexual Lobster’s Fernando’s Legitimate Business Enterprise and a Louna Maroun collaboration with FremantleMedia Australia on Neighbours vs Zombies.