Virus Media is a young and innovative company specialising in strong stories from unusual places. The company is ground-breaking both in its product and also in the processes used to create that product. Virus Media also has a happy knack of procuring alternative sources of funding for its projects.
Set up in 1999, the company has been active in broadcast drama and documentary production along with radio documentary and multimedia projects. The directors Enda Murray and Monique Potts combine strong backgrounds in grassroots media production with innovative flair.
Virus Media's most successful project to date is Road , a broadcast drama devised and acted by young Aboriginal people in the Redfern area of Sydney. The 26 minute film was shot on 35mm with a budget of $270K raised from the AFC Indigenous Unit, SBSi, NSWFTO, Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs and the Australia Council.
Road screened on SBS and won Audience Favourite, Best Director (Catriona McKenzie) and Best Cinematography (Alan Collins) at Flickerfest in 2001 and was given a theatrical release and distribution through the AFI. Road has featured in numerous international festivals including Rotterdam, Ethnofest Berlin, Indigenous Film Festival, Montreal and Dublin and was translated into French and presented to the French government as part of the Baudin Cultural Gift by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade .
Virus Media with the support of the Australia Council and the NSW Ministry for the Arts developed an innovative internet arts project Virtual Palestine . ( www.virtualpalestine.org) . This project was developed with young Arabic people in Western Sydney and provides a virtual space for the Palestinian community worldwide to communicate and share artwork on the web.
Virus Media has produced several radio documentaries for the ABC Radio National Radio Eye slot on fringe communities in Australian society. These include Dereb, portrait of an Ethiopian musician, Wired Palestine and Earthdream.
Previous to coming to Australia in 1996, Enda Murray produced broadcast documentary with his then company Firbolg Films for Central Television in the UK and RTE in Ireland. He was also active in the media activism initiative Undercurrents, an alternative news service which won several international media awards.