Australian web series creator to accept top US prize in New York

Melbourne filmmaker, Sally McLean, wins CINE Award for Best Digital Series for web series Shakespeare Republic

Melbourne, Victoria – November 2017

The second series of low-budget, multi award-winning Australian web series Shakespeare Republic, produced by Melbourne production outfit, Incognita Enterprises, has taken out the prestigious CINE Golden Eagle Award for Best Digital Series, which will be presented to Creator/Director, Sally McLean at the CINE Celebrates award ceremony in New York on November 17th, alongside fellow CINE winners Christian Slater for Mr Robot, National Geographic’s I Mars and Variety’s Actors on Actors series, among others.

Starring Michala Banas (Upper Middle Bogan), Nadine Garner (The Doctor Blake Mysteries), Alan Fletcher (Neighbours), Dean Haglund (The X-Files) and Christopher Kirby (Predestination), among others,
Season Two of Shakespeare Republic has also taken home the BEST MALE LEAD Award for Christopher Kirby at Austin WebFest, BEST HAIR & MAKE UP Award at Tuscany WebFest, BEST ENSEMBLE AMETS Award at Bilbao Seriesland, BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY Award for Shaun Herbertson at Sicily Web Fest and the SPECIAL JURY PRIZE from the Portugal International Film Festival in their new web series category.

The CINE Award is a notable achievement for a low-budget Australian production. Originally founded in 1957 to promote American films to the international market, CINE evolved to become an international award for film and television content-makers, ‘awarding the very best and most original productions each year from around the world’.

As Creator, Producer and Director of Shakespeare Republic, Sally McLean now joins the CINE Alumni ranks, which includes Mel Brooks, Jim Henson, Mike Nichols, Barry Levinson, Robert Altman, Spike Lee, Billy Crystal, Robert De Niro, Martin Scorsese, Sydney Pollack and Forest Whitaker, among others. For some, such as Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard, Robert Zemeckis & Pixar, the CINE Award was their first major industry accolade, as it is McLean’s.

“The CINE Award was truly a shock!” says McLean.  “I was hoping that we would maybe make Finalist level, but to win was astonishing!  What began as a passion project on small budgets, with no screen agency or broadcaster funding, has taken on a life of its own – and the entire team are just so delighted with the response so far.”

Currently ranked in the Top 20 web series in the world out of 500 contenders (at #15), and in the Top 5 series in Australia (source: Web Series World Cup), Shakespeare Republic is definitely making international waves

“The response from audiences to the work has been amazing,” says McLean. “Our audience covers 58 countries to date and continues to grow as people discover our work via the festival circuit. It’s an extraordinary and exciting time for our projects and for Australian web series in general.”

McLean with fellow producers Billy Smedley and Christopher Kirby and Executive Producer, Alan Fletcher is currently working on Season Three of Shakespeare Republic, as well as a new high concept drama series project, again set in Melbourne.

To find out more about Shakespeare Republic, head to the official website:


Incognita Enterprises is a Melbourne-based, independent production business, helmed by Sally McLean and founded under the Honorary Patronage of Oscar® nominated British actor Sir Nigel Hawthorne. To find out more about the company and our previous work, visit:

Shakespeare Republic: #LoveTheBard (Season Two) has been made possible through the support of The Courthouse Hotel, North Melbourne and Mr Moto, as well as Creative Partnerships Australia’s MATCH Program, the Australian Cultural Fund, Auspicious Arts Projects Inc. and Location Sponsors Lord Somers Camp, St Catherine’s School and Toorak College. To date the series has been officially selected for over 40 international film festivals and won 13 awards across the two seasons. To see all the official selections and awards for both Season One and Two, click here:

SEASON TWO ENSEMBLE MEMBERS: Michala Banas, Stephen Costan, Alan Fletcher, Nadine Garner, Dean Haglund, Christopher Kirby, Sally McLean, Tariro Mavondo, Wahibe Moussa, Falon Ryan, Shane Savage, Billy Smedley and Phoebe Anne Taylor