The Babadook bound for Sundance

06 December, 2013 by Don Groves

Writer-director Jennifer Kent’s The Babadook will have its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival next month.

The psychological thriller starring Essie Davis will screen in the Park City at Midnight section of the festival. That’s the second South Australian-shot feature to be showcased at Sundance, joining Sophie Hyde’s 52 Tuesdays.


Davis plays a single mother plagued by memories of the violent death of her husband. When a disturbing storybook called The Babadook turns up at her house she is forced to battle with her son’s deep seated fear of a monster. Soon she discovers a sinister presence.

The Babadook was produced by South Australian Kristian Moliere of Smoking Gun Productions and Kristina Ceyton, supported by the SAFC and Screen Australia, filmed at Adelaide Studios.

“It is a tremendous honour to be selected for Sundance and to have our world premiere in the Park City at Midnight section,” said Moliere. “The SAFC have been a huge supporter of this film and we were privileged to be the first film to shoot on the Adelaide Studios sound stages."

The Australian distributor, Umbrella Entertainment, has not yet set a release date. Ceyton was recently announced as the recipient of a professional placement through Screen Australia’s Talent Escalator program. After Sundance she will work in Los Angeles for six months at FilmNation Entertainment in the feature film production department.

Also screening in the Midnight section is What We Do in the Shadows, a vampire mockumentary from Kiwi directors Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords).