Universal Pictures rom-com Ticket to Paradise, starring Julia Roberts and George Clooney, is the latest international project to be lured to Australia, with production to start in Queensland in November.
The film has received a $6.4 million grant via the Federal Government’s Location Incentive Program, with the expectation it inject $47 million into the local economy and create more than 270 jobs for cast and crew. Screen Queensland has also supported the project via its Production Attraction Strategy.
Directed by Ol Parker (Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again) and produced by Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner of Working Title, alongside Sarah Harvey and Deborah Balderstone, the film will shoot across the Whitsundays and Southern Queensland.
The film follows Wren Butler, a recent University of Chicago graduate who accompanies her best friend Lily to a post-graduation jaunt to Bali. Lily’s abrupt decision to marry a Balinese local triggers her parents (Clooney and Roberts) to team to try and stop her from repeating their mistake from 25 years ago. Wren stays in Bali for the engagement/wedding festivities and, in the process, finds her own love with a local doctor.
“We have worked in Australia before and found the local crews to be extremely professional. We are looking forward to collaborating once again on this exciting project,” said Bevan.
Clooney and Grant Heslov will also produce for Smokehouse Pictures, alongside Red Om Films’ Roberts, Lisa Gillan, and Marisa Yeres Gill. Senior executive vice president of production Erik Baiers and director of development Lexi Barta will oversee the project on behalf of Universal. It is an original screenplay by Parker and Daniel Pipski.
Recent reports in Deadline suggest that Billie Lourd is in talks to play Wren.
Ticket to Paradise is now the 12th project to be lured to Australia since the government topped up the Location Incentive Program with $400 million last July.
Other projects include season two of The Wilds, Netflix series God’s Favorite Idiot, Australian Survivor, The Tourist, Thirteen Lives, Escape From Spiderhead, Pieces of Her, Blacklight, Irreverent, Joe Exotic and Young Rock.