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Sydney Secures Alex Proyas' 'Paradise Lost' Shoot

FILM: Bradley Cooper
GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images

The fantasy epic based on John Milton's poem will star Bradley Cooper as Lucifer.

SYDNEY -- Director Alex Proyas’ take on John Milton’s classic 17th century poem, Paradise Lost will be made at Sydney’s Fox Studios, with Bradley Cooper confirmed in the role of Lucifer, Proyas said Wednesday with New South Wales acting premier Andrew Stoner.

The fantasy epic is being produced by Proyas, Legendary Pictures and Vincent Newman, Warner Bros. Pictures will distribute the film worldwide.

Paradise Lost concerns an epic war in heaven between archangels Michael and Lucifer.

The special effects-heavy feature involves more than 20 weeks of pre-production, eight weeks of principal photography and motion capture, and 72 weeks of post-production and visual effects work. 

Stoner said Paradise Lost will bring an estimated AUS$88 million ($93 million) in production expenditure and an 1,300 jobs to NSW, including over $21.2 million expenditure and 200 jobs in the visual effects area.

While details of the incentives offered to Paradise Lost weren’t revealed, part of the deal includes for California-based digital effects house Digital Domain to establish a base in Sydney that will continue beyond the production of Paradise Lost.

The Australian government recently doubled its post, digital and visual effects incentive to a 30% rebate, while Proyas recently told local media that with the Australian dollar at record highs against the U.S. dollar “we would need to qualify for the [40%] producer offset to make it at all viable.”

Proyas said Wednesday “I’m delighted to have found such overwhelming support here in NSW for such a unique film offering unparalleled exposure for NSW cast and crew to the cutting edge technology that will be used in the making of Paradise Lost.”

"The production of Paradise Lost and Digital Domain's local presence will expose NSW visual effects and film professionals to unique and cutting edge film technologies and methods as well as to work on US studio-financed film projects,” Stoner added.

Proyas made Knowing in Melbourne in 2008.

The announcement came on the same day that leading local digital and visual effects house Rising Sun Pictures said it was starting up a production arm at its Adelaide base.