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Screen industry definitions

The term ‘screen industry’ encompasses all aspects of the industry included in the Screen Industry Survey 2007/08. Screen industry refers to all businesses involved in the four sectors of screen production and post-production, broadcasting, distribution, and exhibition.


Production and post-production


Production involves all work leading up to and including filming. This includes development, pre-production, and principal photography.

Post-production is all activities involved in putting together scenes to make a production complete: for example, editing, visual effects, computer graphics, animation and special effects; developing, printing and processing; captioning and sub-titling; film and video transfers or reproduction; and audio and duplication.

Television broadcasting


The distribution of works through media such as television or the Internet.

Film and video distribution


The process of distributing the completed work for display to the market (for example, film, TV or software distribution; film library operation, and film leasing). This process includes marketing of the completed work.

Film exhibition


The display of a completed work to the public at a pre-set location, such as a cinema, drive-in-theatre, or festival; or as part of a museum display.

Screen production sector

The screen production sector refers to businesses involved in all stages of completing production activity, including both production and post-production work.

Screen production subsectors

Production activity for both screen production companies and contractors is broken down into the following subsectors:



Feature films
Television programmes
Non-broadcast media
Music videos

Screen production companies and contractors

A screen production business can carry out both screen production company activities and contractor activities during the same year. For example, while a production company may work primarily on its own projects, it can also undertake contract work for other companies. Similarly, there are times when contractors complete their own screen production activities. For this publication, we group screen production company and contractor activities under the term ‘business structure’.

Data gathered by the Screen Industry Survey 2007/08 is specific to both screen production company and contractor activities. Reference to the screen production sector includes both screen production company and contractor activities.

Business structure


Screen production company


Creates work intended for final users, such as television stations, corporate customers, advertising agencies or distributors.


A freelancer, sole trader, individual or business that provides services or equipment to another screen production entity on contract.
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