Dr Hester

Dr Hester Joyce

Senior Lecturer and Discipline Coordinator in Creative Arts and Media Arts, consultant in the creative industries, practitioner in screenplay development, screen production and performance.

Senior Lecturer, Creative Arts & English

College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce

Humanities and Social Sciences

Department of Creative Arts and English

HU2 324, Melbourne (Bundoora)


PhD (Auckland), MA (1st ) BA



Membership of professional associations

2005-15 Professional Member, Australian Academy of Film and Television Arts/Australian Film Institute, Australian Writers Guild, MIFF, 2009-15 Screenwriting Research Network

Area of study


Brief profile

Hester recently completed a Harry Ransom Fellowship at University of Austin Texas on The Aesthetics Performativity and Poetics of Scene Text in Screenwriting Practice. The research examines screenplay material chosen from a range of archived and industry-sourced shooting scripts.

As a member (2013- present) of the editorial board of the Journal of Screenwriting she is co-editor on three recent editions (JOS 5.3, 6.1, 6.3).

Recent appointments include 2015 (Jan-Jun) Acting Director: Higher Degree by Research / School Graduate Research Coordinator, 2015 (Jan-Jun) Acting Head of Department Creative Arts & English, 2014 (May-Dec) Deputy Executive Dean, Humanities & Social Sciences.

Research interests

Creative Writing

- Practice-led research, Screenwriting, Screenplay development, Professional writing

Film and Television

- Practice-led research, policy analysis, biography, aesthetics

Teaching units

HUS1PWR - Professional Writing: Words in Action. CST3CIP - Creative Industries Research. CST3SED - Script Development.

CRA2VER - Versions: Thinking through Creative Arts

CRA3SHF - Shopfront: POP-UP Gallery

MSS3ADS - Screenwriting Project



Previously worked in Australian and New Zealand as a private consultant in the creative industries in cultural institutions including AFI, Film Victoria, TVNZ, and NZonAir.

Recent publications

Books and Monographs

Dunleavy, Trisha & Hester Joyce (2011) New Zealand Film & Television: Institution, Industry & Cultural Change Intellect, UK

Book Chapters

Joyce, Hester (2015) ‘Defying the Odds: Women Screenwriters in Aotearoa/New Zealand’, History of Female Screenwriters  eds Jule Selbo and Jill Nelmes, Palgrave Macmillan. DEST-B1.

Joyce, Hester (2014) ‘Beyond the Screenplay: family relations in three films by Gaylene Preston’, Screenwriters and Screenwriting, editor Craig Batty, Palgrave Macmillan. DEST-B1.

Joyce, Hester (2013) ‘Toanga (Maori treasures): Maori Storytelling in the Cinema of Aotearoa/New Zealand.’ World Storytelling and the Cinema Wallflower Press (ed) Lina Khatib DEST- B1.

Joyce, Hester (2012) ‘Making nation: Utu (Geoff Murphy, 1983).’ Screening Australian and New Zealand Histories. (ed) James Bennett  (DEST- B1).

Joyce, Hester (2007) ‘Once Were Warriors’. 24 Frames: The Cinema of Australia and New Zealand, Wallflower Press, co-editors: Geoff Mayer and Keith Beattie. 157-167. DEST- B1.

Joyce, Hester (2007) ‘Runaway’. 24 Frames: The Cinema of Australia and New Zealand, Wallflower Press, co-editors: Geoff Mayer and Keith Beattie. 83-91. DEST- B1. FoR CODE  1902.

Journal Articles

Joyce, Hester (2015) ‘Cargo Cults:  Key Moments in Establishing Screenwriting in the New Zealand Film Commission’, Journal of Screenwriting 6.1 DEST- C1.

Joyce, Hester & Catherine Joyce (2013) ‘Afrika Ants’, TEXT: Journal of Writing and Writing Courses 17. 2 (co-written) DEST- C1. ERA-A+

Joyce, Hester (2013) Capture (wri/prod/dir) Short film exhibition at launch of Unlikely, Journal of La Trobe University Centre for Creative Arts, December 2013

Joyce, Hester (2013) Capture (wri/prod/dir) Short film & essay.

http://unlikely.efront-dev.com.au/issue-1/capture-by-hester-joyce DEST-C1

Joyce, Hester (2009) ‘Out from Nowhere: Pakeha anxieties in Ngati (Barclay 1987), Once Were Warriors (Tamahori, 1994) and Whalerider (Caro, 2002)’. Studies in Australasian Cinema 3.3. DEST- C1. ERA-B.

Joyce, Hester & Scott Wilson (2009) ‘Bad Form: Contemporary Cinema’s Turn to the Perverse.  David Lynch: Lost Highway (1997); Lars von Trier: Breaking the Waves (1996).’ Colloquy Issue 18  http://colloquy.monash.edu.au/issue018/index.html  DEST- C1. ERA-B.

Joyce, Hester (2005) ‘A Sting in the Tale: quirky New Zealand films’. MIA: A Clever Little Country 117: 55-63. DEST- C1. ERA-A.

Joyce, Hester (2005) ‘Hollywood Bound: Peter Jackson’s Braindead (1992) in development’. Metro 146/147:116-122. DEST- C1. ERA-C.



Download Resume

Older publications

Creative Publications (as Script Consultant)

Fishskin Suit, dir. Peter Burger, wri. Briar Grace-Smith. TV3 10 Jan. 2001. SBS 14 March 2004. 

Staunch, dir/wri Keith Hunter, co-wri.Toa Fraser. TV3 3 Oct. 2000.

Love Mussell, dir. Michael Hurst, wri. Stephen Sinclair. TV 3 19 July 2001.

Woodenhead (Florian Habicht, 2003) Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF), 2004 STIGG Film Fest (Spain) 2004.                                

 Montana Sunday Theatre (1-hour television dramas – both finalists in NZ Film and TV Awards 1996 Screenwriting Category) 


Sure to Rise (Niki Caro, 1993) Actor - http://www.nzonscreen.com/title/sure-to-rise-1993

Plain tastes (Niki Caro, 1995) Script editor, actor - http://www.nzonscreen.com/title/plain-tastes-1995

Theatre Works

Forbidden Memories (1997) Co-writer with Douglas Wright. Adaptation of I am Elijah Thrush (James Purdy) for Douglas Wright Dance Company. Maidment Theatre,  Auckland, Feb.1997.

Buried Venus (1996) Dramaturge - Douglas Wright Dance Company. NZ National Tour, July 1996

Research projects


Aesthetics, Poetics and Perfomativity in Screenplays

Practice-led research:

Biography and screen memoir: Afrika project

Aesthetics, Poetics and Prefomativity in Screenplays

Performing Mobilities: The Ghan project (2016)