Category: Film News

After an unprecedented number of applications from across Australia, Rahel Romahn has been named as the 11th recipient of the prestigious and highly-coveted Heath Ledger Scholarship, the richest acting prize in Australia. He joins a growing list of Australian actors whose international careers have been launched on the back of winning of the scholarship.

Rahel most recently starred in the highly anticipated series Shantaram, as well as Mr InBetween and Little Monsters. He was nominated for an AACTA and Logie award for his role in The Principal.  He is based in Sydney and does not, as yet, have US representation.

Announced today at a live online ceremony, Rahel was selected by a star-studded jury lead by global actor Chris Hemsworth (Thor: Love and Thunder, Extraction), Oscar-nominated Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom, Silver Lining Playbook), leading UK casting director Nina Gold (Star Wars, Game of Thrones and Power of the Dog), acclaimed director Rachel Perkins (Total Control, Mystery Road) and US actor Alia Shawkat (Search Party, Animals)

Jacki Weaver said: “The calibre of this year’s finalists made our job as judges very difficult. We were moved and entertained by their performances and know that they all have a big career ahead of them. There can only be one winner and we are proud and excited to award Rahel with this scholarship. He embodies the qualities of excellence in acting combined with the passion and dedication to excel on the world stage. I wish him every success and can’t wait to work with him!”

Rahel was born in Kurdistan, North Iraq at the peak of Saddam Hussein’s brutal genocide of Kurdish people. Rahel and his parents fled Kurdistan and lived as nomadic asylum seekers for years until they were finally accepted into Australia. Since then, Rahel has found his love for the craft of acting and has worked tirelessly on his career in film, television and theatre. His other credits include Here Out West,God’s Favourite Idiot, Australian Gangster, Ali’s Wedding and the stage play 7 for the Sydney Theater Company.

Rahel said today: “Throughout my life, I have learnt a lot from the leaders of the craft of acting. From Heath I learned the power of vulnerability, the importance of bravery and the necessity of supporting the ones around you. These are extremely vital aspects to being a performer in our industry.”

“I want to highlight the importance of inclusivity. I am so proud of our industry for putting diversity at the top of our priority list. Leading by example and creating a safe haven for people of colour, the LGBTQI+ and gender diverse community. It is so simple, we are all human and deserve to be treated with respect and safety. Discrimination has gone on long enough and I believe we are getting closer and closer to becoming one big family who finally accept and learn to understand and love one another.”

The Heath Ledger Scholarship is awarded to an emerging Australian actor with extraordinary ability and dedication to their craft who wishes to work and train internationally. The scholarship has propelled many previous recipients into international careers including Bella Heathcote (Pieces of Her), Cody Fern (American Horror Story), Ashleigh Cummings (Citadel),Mojean Aria (The Enforcer) and Charmaine Bingwa (The Good Fight).

Charmaine Bingwa, who announced Rahel today, said: “It’s never lost on me, for one moment, what a rich bounty the Heath Ledger Scholarship has brought me. It was one of the most beautifully transformative experiences. In a short space of time it put me on the path to working with world-class talents on world-class projects. I am forever grateful to Heath, his remarkable legacy and his benevolent family. I’m thrilled for the next recipient and the incredible opportunities that lie before them.”

The finalists this year included Max Brown (The Tourist, The Gloaming), Mabel Li (The Tailings, New Gold Mountain), Andrea Solonge (Privileged, Girl, Interpreted), Zoe Terakes (Wentworth, Nine Perfect Strangers) and Harvey Zielinski (Don’t Look Deeper, My First Summer).

Prizes this year include a US$10,000 cash prize to support the recipient with living expenses in the US while studying, a return economy flight to the US, plus the following educational training and career preparation training worth over US$40K/AUS$50K:

  • Private Coaching from Lisa Robertson and Group Classes at Lisa Robertson Studio;
  • Private speech and dialects coaching by Joy Ellison;
  • Private coaching, classes, and special workshops taught by Jean-Louis Rodrigue and Kristof Konrad from Alexander Techworks;
  • Physical Approach to Acting & Voice De-structuring (Authentic Voice) with Kennedy Brown- LA Acting Coach 
  • Group and Personal Coaching Provided by The Performer’s Mindset;
  • Immigration Services Provided by Raynor and Associates;
  • Studio Headshot Package by Sally Flegg Photography and Hair & Makeup Package by Sophia Ivy Lee;
  • Personal styling services by Lenya Wilson; 
  • Bespoke Private Meditation Classes Provided by Chris Phillips, Inner Sky
  • Lifetime AiF membership, which includes access to the creative workspaces, Charlie’s including invitations to exclusive AiF Events.
  • The winner’s submission reel will also be preserved in the National Film & Sound Archive of Australia in Canberra.

The Heath Ledger Scholarship is supported by the Australians & Hollywood exhibition at the National Film and Sound Archive, currently in Canberra.

Disney+ announced today that “Torn,” from director Max Lowe and producer Chris Murphy, along with Lightbox’s award-winning producers Simon Chinn and Jonathan Chinn, will premiere on Disney+ on Feb. 4, 2022. From National Geographic Documentary Films, “Torn” had its world premiere at the 2021 Telluride Film Festival and won the award for Best Feature Film at BANFF. The film, called a “cinematic gift” by RogerEbert.com, captures the Lowe-Ankers’ intense personal journey through love and loss with eldest son, Max, behind the lens.
 
On Oct. 5, 1999, Alex was tragically lost alongside cameraman and fellow climber David Bridges in a deadly avalanche on the slopes of the Tibetan mountain Shishapangma. Miraculously surviving the avalanche was Alex’s best friend and climbing partner, renowned mountaineer Conrad Anker. After the tragedy, Anker and Alex’s widow, Jennifer, fell in love, married, and Anker stepped in to help raise Alex’s three sons.
 
In 2016, 17 years after their deaths, Lowe’s and Bridges’ bodies were discovered, and Lowe’s family journeyed to the remote Himalayan mountains to recover the men’s remains. In the powerful and deeply moving “Torn,” director Max Lowe examines the long-buried feelings that the discovery unearthed for him and his family members. Weaving together archival footage of Alex’s spellbinding adventures, revealing home movies and emotional interviews with Jennifer, Sam, Isaac and Conrad, Lowe challenges long-held family myths and questions his own beliefs as he creates an insightful examination of fatherhood, love, loss and resilience set against the high-stakes world of professional mountain climbing.
 
“I have put everything of myself into ‘Torn,’” said director Max Lowe. “A film truly unique in my career in its detailing of my own family’s heart opening exercise in vulnerability around our shared trauma, redemption and love. I couldn’t be more honoured and thrilled to be able to share our story with the world on one of the biggest stages with our upcoming Disney+ launch.” 
 
“Torn” is directed by first-time feature filmmaker Max Lowe with Murphy as producer. Producing for Lightbox is two-time Academy Award® winner Simon Chinn (“Man on Wire,” “Searching for Sugar Man”) and Academy Award nominee Jonathan Chinn (“Black Sheep,” “LA 92”); the editor is Michael Harte (“Three Identical Strangers”). 
 
National Geographic Documentary Films previously released the Academy Award, BAFTA and seven-time Emmy® Award-winning film “Free Solo” and the Academy Award-nominated film “The Cave.” Other critically acclaimed films under the banner include E. Chai Vasarheyli and Jimmy Chin’s “The Rescue,” Liz Garbus’ “Becoming Cousteau” and Ron Howard’s “Rebuilding Paradise;” Sundance Audience Award winners “Science Fair” and “Sea of Shadows;” Emmy winners “LA 92” and “Jane,” both of which were included in the top 15 documentaries considered for an Academy Award in 2017; and Dupont Award winner “Hell On Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of Isis.” 

 Stan today released the teaser trailer for the highly anticipated series JOE vs CAROLEavailable Friday 4 March only on Stan. Written and executive produced by Etan FrankelJOE vs CAROLE is directed by Justin Tipping and Natalie Bailey

Cast includes John Cameron Mitchell (Shrill) as Joe “Exotic” Schreibvogel, Kate McKinnon (Saturday Night Live) as Carole Baskin, Kyle MacLachlan (Atlantic Crossing) as Howard Baskin, Brian Van Holt (Cougar Town) as John Reinke, Sam Keeley (The English Game) as John Finlay, Nat Wolff (Paper Towns) as Travis Maldonado, Marlo Kelly (Dare Me) as Jamie Murdock, William Fichtner (Mom) as Rick Kirkham, Dean Winters (Brooklyn Nine-Nine) as Jeff Lowe, and Australia’s David Wenham (Elvis) as Don Lewis.

Filmed in Queensland, JOE vs CAROLE is a scripted adaptation of the 2020 Wondery podcast Joe Exotic: Tiger King, hosted and reported by Robert Moor. Alongside Etan Frankel, Kate McKinnon will also executive produce along with Alex Katsnelson and Wondery’s Hernan Lopez, Marshall Lewy, and Aaron HartJoe vs Carole is produced by UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group.

Showrunner, Writer, and Executive Producer Etan Frankel said: JOE vs CAROLE is a wild ride. We knew it would take two extraordinary actors to portray these larger-than-life people as the complex, three-dimensional individuals that they are. John Cameron Mitchell is one of the most gifted and thoughtful actors I’ve ever worked with. He cares so deeply about the work, and his performance is breathtaking. And Kate McKinnon is simply remarkable. She is able to make us double over with laughter one moment and then break our hearts the next. It was an absolute thrill to watch these two exceptional actors morph into these roles.”

JOE vs CAROLE premieres 4 March, same day as the U.S. and only on Stan. 

Hadden Motion Pictures has today released the official trailer for A STITCH IN TIME. From the executive producer of Ladies in Black and writer/director Sasha Hadden, and expertly shot by cinematographer Don McAlpine ACS ASC (The Dressmaker, Moulin Rouge!) A STITCH IN TIME is an ode to the power of community and friendships that come from the most unexpected places. The film is set to arrive in Australian cinemas nationally on February 17, 2022.

A STITCH IN TIME is a heart-warming story about former dressmaker Liebe (Maggie BlincoThe NightingaleCrocodile Dundee), who reinvents herself after befriending young Chinese fashion designer Hamish (Hoa XuandeTop of The LakeHungry Ghosts).

When Liebe’s partner Duncan (Little River Band’s Glenn Shorrock) loses his job singing at the local pub, Liebe throws herself into helping Duncan realise his dream to record an album.

Inspired by Hamish, Liebe decides to make clothes again to support Duncan financially, but quickly reignites a long-forgotten passion for her craft. With Duncan intent on shutting down her dreams, Liebe packs her bags and moves in with her best friend, Christine (television and theatre favourite Belinda Giblin), and her unsuspecting husband, Justin (John GreggBodylineTo End All Wars), to reclaim her life and discover where she belongs.

Liebe’s touching story will remind audiences of all ages that it is never too late to follow your dreams.

‘A STITCH IN TIME’ WILL BE AVAILABLE IN AUSTRALIAN CINEMAS NATIONALLY ON FEBRUARY 17, 2022

20th Century Studios’ suspense thriller “No Exit” will debut exclusively as an Original on Disney+ in Australia on February 25.

In “No Exit,” Havana Rose Liu (“Mayday”) makes her feature film leading role debut as Darby, a young woman en route to a family emergency who is stranded by a blizzard and forced to find shelter at a highway rest area with a group of strangers. When she stumbles across an abducted girl in a van in the parking lot, it sets her on a terrifying life-or-death struggle to discover who among them is the kidnapper. 

Directed by Damien Power (“Killing Ground”) from a teleplay by Andrew Barrer & Gabriel Ferrari (“Ant-Man and the Wasp”) based on Taylor Adams’ 2017 novel and produced by PGA Award winner Scott Frank (“The Queen’s Gambit”), the film stars Havana Rose Liu, Danny Ramirez (“The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “Top Gun: Maverick”), David Rysdahl (“Nine Days”), Mila Harris (“Young Dylan”) and Dennis Haysbert (“Breakthrough”). 

Umbrella Entertainment in association with Monster Fest Presents are pleased to announce Special Event Screenings of BEYOND THE WASTELAND, launching with the World Premiere on February 5th. 

BEYOND THE WASTELAND is a new Australian documentary that examines the culture rooted in MAD MAX (1979) and MAD MAX 2: THE ROAD WARRIOR (1981), both of which became instant international cult films during the 1980s, examining the influence that they have had on contemporary culture by featuring the fans that live and breathe all that is MAD MAX. 

Director/Producer Eddie Beyrouthy and Producer Phil Lambert of The Picture Lot travel the world in search of the ultimate MAD MAX fans and explore the level of obsession these true believers have, from costumes to cars to entire lifestyles.

BEYOND THE WASTELAND will have its World Premiere on Saturday 5th February at Village Cinemas Coburg Drive-In in Melbourne, Victoria.

Following the Premiere, BEYOND THE WASTELAND will travel around Australia in a series of special fan-based event screenings that will feature Q&As with Cast & Crew from both the documentary and the original films, along with MAD MAX-inspired vehicles and  cosplayers. 

SCREENING DATESSATURDAY 5TH FEB 8.45PM
VIC:
 Coburg Village Drive-In [World Premiere]
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
& Phil Lambert (Producer)
TicketsSUNDAY 6TH FEB 7PM
VIC: 
Village Cinemas Morwell
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
TicketsFRIDAY 11TH FEB 8.30PM
SA: 
Mainline Drive-In Adelaide
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
TicketsSATURDAY 12TH FEB 7PM
NSW: 
Silver City Cinema Broken Hill
TicketsFRIDAY 18TH FEB 8.30PM
VIC: Lido Cinemas Rooftop Hawthorn
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
& Phil Lambert (Producer)
TicketsSATURDAY 19TH FEB 8.30PM
VIC: Showbiz Cinemas Drive-In Ballarat
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
TicketsSUNDAY 20TH FEB 8:30PM
VIC: Classic Cinemas Elsternwick
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
& Phil Lambert (Producer)
TicketsTHURSDAY 24TH FEB 6PM
ACT: NFSA – National Film & Sound Archive of Australia
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
TicketsSATURDAY 26TH FEB 8PM
NSW: Event Skyline Drive-In Blacktown Sydney
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer),
Roger ‘Fifi’ Ward (Actor, MAD MAX) and
Paul ‘Cundalini’ Johnstone (Actor, MAD MAX)

TicketsSATURDAY 12TH MARCH 7PM
QLD: Event Cinemas Loganholme
w/ Q&A by Eddie Beyrouthy (Director/Producer)
Tickets

Indulge in the ultimate romantic picnic at Lovers by Lakeside overlooking stunning Australian Botanic Garden views, nestled in the comfort of your special spot watching a classic romantic comedy. 

Settle in for a night of wonder, romance and teenage 90’s slang as you watch this year’s chosen film, 10 Things I Hate About You starring Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles on our spectacular 10 metre outdoor screen. 

Prepare for a night filled with laughs and of course… love! Visit the south-west of Sydney for a magical night out that will make you feel like a film character amongst such beautiful nature settings. 

Just when you think it couldn’t get any better, this year there are exclusive VIP tickets and delicious hampers on offer for the first time to make your lakeside picnic just a little more special. There are plenty of options to choose from, including the Charcuterie box for those who prefer a picnic feast, or the Veggie Garden box for a lighter option. The Sweets for my sweet box hamper is also up for pre-order for all the sweet tooth couples. 

SEATING OPTIONS (PER COUPLE) 

  • Ultimate Sweethearts – Numbered bean bag seating, box of chocolates, box of popcorn, prime viewing front of screen plus VIP parking
  • Laidback Lovers – Bean bag seating, box of popcorn and next level viewing behind VIP seating
  • Privacy Seekers – Designated spot in general admission seating

HAMPER OPTIONS (PER COUPLE) 

  • Charcuterie Box– Wood smoked ham shavings, dry cured salami, green olive mortadella, southcape double brie, Black Jack aged cheddar, house-made dips (beetroot and hummus), marinated black and green olives, sweet potato rosti, marinated olives, fresh seasonal fruits, wafers, sesame lavosh, and crisps
  • Veggie Garden Box– Herbed cashew cheese, marinated mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes, marinated black and green olives, pickles, sweet potato rosti, house-made dips (beetroot, hummus and pesto), fresh seasonal fruits, wafers, sesame lavosh, crisps, dried fruits and nuts
  • Sweet for my sweet box- Buttercream vanilla cupcakes, rocky road, chocolate pretzels, french macarons, doughnuts, milk chocolate pots with strawberries and marshmallows, fresh seasonal fruits and assorted candy to decorate  

EVENT DETAILS

  • When: Monday,14 February, gates open at 7:30pm, film from 8:15pm 
  • Where: Lakeside Lawn, Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan 
  • Film: 10 Things I Hate About You  
  • Ticket Price: $45 – $110
  • Parking: Free (grass area) or VIP parking car park 
  • Age: Adults only (sorry no kids at this one) 
  • Drinks/Alcohol: This is a BYO event. Food included in Ultimate Sweetheart and Laidback Lovers package plus the extra hampers available for purchase

Ensure the selected hamper package is mentioned when pre-ordering tickets to the event. 

For more information on the event visit the Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan website here.

Disney Legend Tim Allen will executive-produce “The Santa Clause” (working title), a Disney+ Original limited series in which he reprises the beloved role of Scott Calvin from Walt Disney Pictures’ blockbuster franchise.  

Production is set to begin in Los Angeles in March. Award-winning Jack Burditt (“30 Rock,” “Modern Family,” “Frasier,” “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”) is the executive producer and showrunner and Kevin Hench (“Last Man Standing”), Richard Baker and Rick Messina will also serve as executive producers.  

The Disney Branded Television series is a production of 20th Television.
 
Allen won a People’s Choice Award for his portrayal of Scott Calvin, Santa Claus’s proxy, complete with expanding waistline, rosy cheeks and snow-white whiskers in the 1994 film “The Santa Clause.”. He went on to play the role in two sequels, both hugely popular movies, 2002’s “The Santa Clause 2” and 2006’s “The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause.”
 
In the Disney+ series, Scott Calvin is on the brink of his 65th birthday and realising that he can’t be Santa forever. He’s starting to lose a step in his Santa duties, and more importantly, he’s got a family who could benefit from a life in the normal world, especially his two kids who have grown up at the Pole.  With a lot of elves, children, and family to please, Scott sets out to find a suitable replacement Santa while preparing his family for a new adventure in a life south of the pole.
 
Allen, whose popularity skyrocketed as the star of the top-rated ABC series “Home Improvement,” earned numerous awards for his role of Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor, including a Golden Globe in 1994 and The People’s Choice Award for eight consecutive years from 1992-1999. Allen also starred for nine seasons on the hit series “Last Man Standing.”
 
In 1995, the multi-talented actor lent his voice to Buzz Lightyear in Pixar’s first computer animated film, “Toy Story.”  He reprised the iconic role as the arrogant yet loveable space action figure in two sequels, 1999’s “Toy Story 2” and 2010’s “Toy Story 3.” He also appeared as the character in a number of “Toy Story” short films including “Hawaiian Vacation,” “Small Fry” and “Partysaurus Rex.”
 
He reunited with the creative team from “The Santa Clause” to make Disney’s “Jungle 2 Jungle,” and also starred in the feature remake of a Disney classic,” The Shaggy Dog,” in 2006.
 
Allen also lent his own voice as narrator to the 2012 Disneynature documentary, “Chimpanzee” and co-starred in the 2007 Touchstone comedy “Wild Hogs” along with the 1999 film “Galaxy Quest.”
 
In 1994, Disney’s Hyperion Publishing released his debut book, Don’t Stand Too Close to a Naked Man. It topped the New York Times Bestsellers list and led to a second book, also published by Hyperion, I’m Not Really Here.

Shudder, AMC Networks’ premium streaming service for horror, thrillers and the supernatural, has released two brand-new clips – “Finger” and “Knees & Prayers” – from the upcoming Shudder Original The Last Thing Mary Saw, premiering exclusively on the platform on Thursday 20 January.

The film stars Rory Culkin (WacoHalston), Stefanie Scott (Insidious: Chapter 3) and Isabelle Fuhrman (Orphan), and is written and directed by Edoardo Vitaletti, making his feature length film debut.

Southold, New York, 1843: Young Mary (Scott), blood trickling from behind the blindfold tied around her eyes, is interrogated about the events surrounding her grandmother’s death. As the story jumps back in time, we witness Mary, raised in a repressively religious household, finding fleeting happiness in the arms of Eleanor (Fuhrman), the home’s maid. Her family, who believe they are seeing, speaking, and acting on God’s behalf, view the girls’ relationship as an abomination, to be dealt with as severely as possible. The couple attempt to carry on in secret, but someone is always watching or listening, and the wages of perceived sin threaten to become death, with the tension only heightened by the arrival of an enigmatic stranger (Culkin) and the revelation of greater forces at work.

The Last Thing Mary Saw was produced by Isen Robbins and Aimee Schoof of Intrinsic Value Films, Harrison Allen and Madeleine Schumacher of Arachnid Films, Stephen Tedeschi and executive produced by Scoop Wasserstein.

Today, Disney+ debuted a thrilling, brand-new trailer for the upcoming Marvel Studios’ series “Moon Knight” during Halftime of the NFL Super Wild Card matchup between the Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams. 
 
A new poster was also released for the original, live-action series streaming exclusively on Disney+ starting March 30.
 
The series follows Steven Grant, a mild-mannered gift-shop employee, who becomes plagued with blackouts and memories of another life. Steven discovers he has dissociative identity disorder and shares a body with mercenary Marc Spector. As Steven/Marc’s enemies converge upon them, they must navigate their complex identities while thrust into a deadly mystery among the powerful gods of Egypt. 
 
“Moon Knight” stars Oscar Isaac, Ethan Hawke and May Calamawy. Mohamed Diab and the team of Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead directed the episodes. Jeremy Slater is the head writer, and Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Brad Winderbaum, Mohamed Diab, Jeremy Slater and Oscar Isaac are the executive producers. Grant Curtis, Trevor Waterson and Rebecca Kirsch serve as co-executive producers.