Keir Beck on the set of Russell Mulcahy’s ‘In Like Flynn.’

After working as a stunt coordinator on scores of films and TV series for 20 years, Keir Beck is stepping up to direct his first feature, I’ll Be There.

Perhaps surprisingly given his experience on action movies, the project is a romantic drama about four friends who embark on a road trip after the death of the lead character’s brother in a surfing accident.

The producers are Jessica Butland, who produced her first feature, director Michael Budd’s sci-fi- thriller Enter Sanctum last year, and Rui Chen. The screenplay is by Margaret M. MacDonald (who penned Enter Sanctum) with Luke Mackey as the storyline writer.

Financed by Chinese and Australian investors and budgeted at $5.5 million, the film is due to start shooting on the Gold Coast, northern NSW and possibly WA, in October.

The cast is yet to be revealed but will include an iconic Australian actor, according to Beck, the director of AP8 Films and CEO of Live Action Training. Among his credits as stunt coordinator or stunt  performer are Danger Close, In Like Flynn, Swinging Safari, Bleeding Steel,  Hacksaw Ridge, Insidious: Chapter 3, San Andreas  and Mad Max: Fury Road.

Butland brought the project to Beck, who tells IF: “After working for so long on action films and dramas and watching some fantastic directors, I thought it was time to step up and apply what I have learned to directing my own film.”

The plot follows the four friends as they come to terms with Billy’s death, for which they carry some guilt, and ends with what the director promises will be a “fantastic twist.”

With veteran storyboard artist Graeme Callender, whose credits include Danger Close, Guardians of the Tomb, The Commuter, Jungle and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, he has mapped out the entire film.

The DOP is Brad Shield, who was the second unit DOP on numerous films including Spider-Man: Homecoming, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, The Wolverine, Jack Reacher and The Avengers.

His mate Nash Edgerton has given him some tips on the do’s and don’ts of being a first time director. He hopes to shoot some surfing sequences in WA where Simon Baker filmed Breath, a film he greatly admires.

The producers are negotiating deals with an international sales agent and for Australian distribution.

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