New movie is a fair cop for Esther Anderson

01 May, 2014 by Don Groves

Esther Anderson. 


After playing policewoman Charlie Buckton in Home and Away for five years, with a one- year gap after her character was killed off and later appeared in a vision, Esther Anderson is playing a cop in Broken Contract, an action comedy now shooting in Perth.

There are similarities between the characters but there is one major difference, apart from the milieu. In Broken Contract she’s a detective who investigates threats from a local gang to Max (Offspring and Crownies’ Christopher Morris), a down-on-his luck club owner, and his family. Max’s response is to hire a hit man (Jag Pannu).


Esther describes her character, Detective Keeling, as “strong, very smart and by-the-book, with a bit of a mouth.”

The Los Angeles-based actor and former model didn’t hesitate when writer-director James Pentecost offered her the role, her first feature, which appealed to her as “a fun project, a mix of drama and really dry comedy.”

Last year she was part of the ensemble cast in Siberia, a 13-part NBC series which followed 16 people who were left to fend for themselves in the Siberian wilderness for the chance to win $US500,000.

The twist: While the actors including Esther used their real names, all played fictional characters in the Survivor-esque mockumentary. She portrayed a model from Melbourne who was determined to do anything to win.

She enjoyed shooting the series in Manitoba, Canada and is waiting to hear whether NBC will order a second series.

Like many Home and Away alumni, she is grateful for the experience and training she got on the soap. “I did 378 episodes, which is more than many actors get to do a lifetime,” she said.

She moved to LA two years ago but returns to Australia every two or three months for her assignment as the “face” of Telstra and to see family and friends.

When she went to her first auditions in the US she used her natural Australian accent. Now she always adopts an American accent so that her nationality isn’t an issue.

Broken Contract is the second feature from Pentecost, whose debut was Twisted Minds, and the third from Jag Pannu Productions, in association with VCR Media. The producer is Hayden Fortescue.