Development funding for 16 features
Projects by Stephan Elliott, The Babadook writer- director Jennifer Kent, Ben Elton, Rowan Woods, Trent O'Donnell and Jacqueline McKenzie are among the recipients of the latest round of development funding from Screen Australia.
The agency is investing more than $550,000 in 16 feature film projects, including 11 new ones and five that get continued support.
Screen Australia’s Head of Production Sally Caplan, said, “The funding decisions made in this last quarter reflect the breadth of stories coming out of this country and the depth of talent. It is great to be able to support such a spread of genres and ideas and such a range of established and emerging writing, directing and producing talent.”
Elliott’s Madams is a comedy from the writers of Easy Virtue. Kent gets funding for Interior, a revenge thriller set in Tasmania in the 1820s.
Woods’ The Phobos Experiment is a thriller in which people simulate training to take humanity 40 million miles to Mars and back.
Elton is writing and directing a film inspired by the current-day The Wiggles and Deane Taylor is attached to direct a Blinky Bill movie.
The Moodys’ co-creator Trent O’Donnell is to direct Death is for the Living, the saga of a psychotherapist who uses hypnosis to enable a female patient to ‘live’ her future in her subconscious.
Damien Lay’s To the Bitter End is a psychological thriller about a pirate and pursuer locked in a treacherous ocean pursuit.
Mulan is an action adventure inspired by an ancient Chinese fable about a legendary female warrior, from producers Emile Sherman and Iain Canning and writer Jan Sardi.
EM is a romantic comedy described as Jane Austen's Emma Down Under from director Kate Riedl and writer Emma Jensen, and All I Know of the Devil is the first feature scripted by TV writer Shanti Gudgeon.
Theatre director Michael Kantor receives support for his second feature with writer Marion Nelson, The Engagement, an adaptation of Chloe Hooper’s novel about an erotic weekend in the country which becomes a trap where a woman is lost in a labyrinth of lies, fantasies and fear.
Other dramas include Undertow, the tale of a journalist who investigates her husband's suspected infidelity and becomes ensnared in a sex scandal that threatens to engulf her marriage, from writer/director Miranda Nation and producers Lyn Norfor and Sylvia Wilczynski, and King: A Street Story by producer/writer/director Jacqueline McKenzie and producer Rob Coe.
SINGLE PROJECT DEVELOPMENT: Feature Development
ALL I KNOW OF THE DEVIL
Genre Comedy, drama
Writer Shanti Gudgeon
Producer Barbara Stephen
Writer Fin Edquist
Director Deane Taylor
Synopsis A young and mischievous koala embarks on a journey across the wild and dangerous outback in the hope of finding his missing father, but discovers that there's more to being an adventurer than meets the eye. Based on the characters from the children's book of the same name.
DEATH IS FOR THE LIVING
Genre Romantic comedy
Executive Producer Jason Burrows
Director Trent O'Donnell
Writers Kirsty Fisher, Marieke Hardy
Synopsis In search of pain relief from her terminal illness, Sara encounters Dan, a psychotherapist who, through hypnosis, gives her a way to ‘live’ her ‘future’ in her subconscious – but things get complicated when Dan, enamoured by Sara, begins to ‘write’ himself into her ‘dream’ future.
Genre Romantic comedy
Producers Matthew Dabner, Karen Radzyner, Anna Vincent
Director Kate Riedl
Writer Emma Jensen
Synopsis Jane Austen’s Emma Down Under.
END OF ANIMAL
Producers Michael Wrenn, Paul Yi
Director Eron Sheean
Writer Shane Danielsen
Producers Bruno Charlesworth, Jo Dyer
Executive Producer Robert Connolly
Director Michael Kantor
Writer Marion Nelson
Synopsis An erotic weekend in the country becomes a trap where a woman is lost in a labyrinth of lies, fantasies and fear – but of whose making?
Writer/Director Jennifer Kent
KING: A STREET STORY
Producers Rob Coe, Jacqueline McKenzie
Executive Producers Jocelyn Moorhouse, Timothy White
Writer/Director Jacqueline McKenzie
Synopsis King, a courageous and resourceful 12-year-old street-kid who acts like a dog, finds acceptance in a small community on the outskirts of the city. But the threat of a redevelopment forces King to his final redemption.
Producers Stephan Elliott, Gary Hamilton
Director Stephan Elliott
Writers Stephan Elliott, Sheridan Jobbins
Synopsis A comedy from the writers of Easy Virtue.
Genre Action adventure
Producers Emile Sherman, Iain Canning
Writer Jan Sardi
Synopsis Inspired by the ancient Chinese fable, this new take on the story of Mulan recounts the legendary heroine’s rise to greatness and her quest to discover her true identity.
THE PHOBOS EXPERIMENT
Producer Penny Wall
Director Rowan Woods
Writer Jacquelin Perske
Synopsis Their mission: simulated training to take humanity 40 million miles to Mars and back. But what if their mission is a lie? A lie that will push the crew beyond breaking point and into a desperate fight for survival.
TO THE BITTER END
Producer Carolyn Frichot
Executive Producer Sue Maslin
Director Damien Lay
Writer John Goldsmith
Synopsis A psychological thriller in which pirate and pursuer become locked in a dangerous ocean pursuit, to bring home the catch at all cost.
UNDERTOW (AKA HALFWAY MOTEL)
Producers Lyn Norfor, Sylvia Wilczynski
Writer/Director Miranda Nation
Synopsis When a journalist investigates her husband's suspected infidelity, she becomes obsessed by the young girl in question and ensnared in a sex scandal that threatens to engulf her marriage and her sanity.
THE WIGGLES – PANDAMONIUM!
Producers Paul Field, Michael Wrenn, Gary Hamilton
Executive Producer Anthony Field
Writer/Director Ben Elton
Synopsis The Wiggles race against time and must employ all their unique talents to overcome mysterious challenges in order to safely return a lost baby panda to his family. Based on the characters from the highly-acclaimed children's television show The Wiggles.
SINGLE PROJECT DEVELOPMENT: Feature Matched Funding
Producer Chris Brown
Writer Craig Rosenberg
Director James McTeigue
Synopsis A reinvention of the 1988 film of the same name.
Producer Antony I. Ginnane
Executive Producer Anthony J. Lyons
Writers Kris Wyld, Tim Knapton
Synopsis A 70s crime figure and nightclub owner overcomes insuperable odds to achieve his dream, but loses his soul along the way.
TALENT ESCALATOR PROGRAMS: Industry Placements
Director Shannon Murphy will spend six months at Endemol/Southern Star under the tutelage of producer Imogen Banks Murphy, on the productions of Gallipoli, Offspring and Party Tricks.
TALENT ESCALATOR PROGRAMS: Director’s Acclaim
Director James Vaughan's short film You Like It, I Love It was selected for competition at the Berlin International Film Festival and Clermont Ferrand.
TALENT ESCALATOR PROGRAMS: International Script Workshop
Writer/Director Bryn Chainey will attend the Torino Script&Pitch workshops in Europe.