Exclusive: Alex Proyas mulls Australian shoot for Paradise Lost

15 April, 2011 by Brendan Swift

Filmmaker Alex Proyas is considering bringing his next big-budget feature, Paradise Lost, to Australia.

The director told IF that he is considering shooting the film, inspired by John Milton’s epic poem, in Australia although the decision has not yet been made.


“It is not yet a certainty by any means and with the exchange rate on the Aussie dollar right now, we would need to qualify for the producer offset to make it at all viable,” he wrote via email.

The Australian dollar is currently trading at a record $US1.05, which has severely curtailed the number of Hollywood productions shooting in Australia.

Proyas’ last feature, Knowing, was shot in Melbourne in 2008 and received the government’s 40 per cent producer offset rebate despite being initially rejected at the provisional approval stage by the former Film Finance Corporation.

“We are also looking for supplementary state government support – both NSW and Vic are being considered,” Proyas said.

“As with all my films I off course hope to be able to shoot on my home turf and, as this is a very large production, it could be a currently much-needed boost to the local industry if it were to happen here.”

Last year, Proyas was attached to Universal’s Dracula Year Zero although that film has since been placed in turnaround. (It is believed one of the issues involved scheduling problems with the film’s star Sam Worthington.)

The local industry is eagerly waiting for two major local productions to begin filming later this year: Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby and George Miller’s long delayed Fury Road.

Nonetheless, the ongoing paucity of major film productions has forced many local crew to either leave the industry or head offshore to find work. A number of Australian crew are currently working on Ang Lee’s Life of Pi, which is shooting in Taiwan.