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Stories & Ideas

Wed 12 Aug 2020

Turning your life into material with Benjamin Law

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ACMI

Your museum of screen culture

Writer, journalist, broadcaster and all-round polymath Benjamin Law talks diversity on Australian screens, storytelling and how to draw narrative inspiration from your own life

Benjamin Law helped bring some much needed diversity to Australian screens when his 2014 book, The Family Law, was adapted for television.

As he tells Denise Eriksen from Media Monitors in this interview, "When I turned on the television there were very few Asian Australian faces on television, so that just gave me the impression from my neighbourhood and my access to the media, because it was largely pre-internet, that Australia must just be all-white and even by that stage we must've been one of the most multicultural nations on the planet."

Thanks to creatives like Benjamin, Australia is finally seeing an increase in on-screen diversity that more truthfully reflects our national character, but he also has tips for turning your own life into a story worth of the screen. Running Free is a series of screen-related interviews for up and coming industry professionals, presented by Media Monitors and ACMI on YouTube.

I really do think that when you're a storyteller, and that's what the media and the arts are, you do have a responsibility to tell the stories and a full range and diversity of what those stories actually are out there.

Benjamin Law

About Benjamin Law

Benjamin Law is an Australian writer and broadcaster. He created and co-wrote three seasons of the award-winning SBS TV series The Family Law, based on his memoir, and his debut play Torch the Place ran February–March 2020. Every week, Benjamin co-hosts ABC RN’s weekly national pop culture show Stop Everything and interviews public figures for Good Weekend. He also co-hosts online startup and tech TV show That Startup Show.

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