After tackling children held in detention as the subject of her AFTRS graduate film, Blue Lucine is shooting a feature documentary on another controversial topic.
The writer-director is examining the plight of residents who are being evicted from public housing in Millers Point in Sydney by the NSW government.
She is focussing on six people, three who have moved out after their houses were sold, and three who say they refuse to budge and the police or army will have to forcibly remove them.
Lucine has teamed up with experienced documentary makers Tom Zubrycki and Helen Barrow, who are serving as the producers. Screen Australia and Screen NSW funded the early development.
She showed the rushes to Zubrycki when she was doing some filming and editing work for him and he readily agreed to come aboard.
The doc’s working title is Forced Out. She is aiming for festival exposure followed by cinema release and TV broadcast. “This is a universal theme which is happening around the world,” she tells IF.
Lucine will discuss the difficulties she encountered while shooting her AFTRS short A Thousand Suns at the Ozdox forum The Ethics of Documentary Filmmaking, chaired by director/producer Rod Freedman at AFTRS Theatre on July 9.
Also speaking will be Struggle Street writer-producer Marc Radomsky, Sherpa director Jen Peedom and I Am A Girl producer/director Rebecca Barry.
A Thousand Suns told the story of 9-year-old Tamil asylum seeker Kumeran, who was living in the Villawood Immigration Detention Centre when Lucine visited him in 2013 with his father.
She secretly took notes of her conversations with Kumeran using an inkless pen, then coloured in the words when she got home.
“I wanted to tell his story in his own words, without being embellished,” she says. She was not allowed to film the boy so she used an actor in the doco, showing how Kumeran used his imagination to explore the possibilities of escape and to dream of a world he could not reach.
Kumeran was released in early 2014 but his mother is still in detention. The short premiered at the Antenna Documentary Film Festival.
At the Ozdox forum Lucine might also address the challenges she is having in dealing with the two government departments handling the Millers Point sales and relocation: the Department of Lands, Planning and the Environment and the Department of Family and Community Services.
Neither, she says, is co-operating with her