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These films and series are bringing heat to Australia’s diverse slate.
Happy Feet Two
2011, Warner Bros. — It goes without saying that George Miller’s animated holiday feature, the sequel to his Oscar-winning 2006 release that earned $384 million globally, will be the biggest Australian movie this year. This time, Miller has set up his own animation studio, Dr. D.
2013, Lionsgate — Aaron Eckhart toplines the fanboy story, based on a graphic novel by Underworld co-creator Kevin Grevioux, about Mary Shelley’s monster becoming human. It is Stuart Beattie’s second feature as a writer-director; his debut, Tomorrow, When the War Began, was the top-grossing Australian film here in 2010.
A Few Best Men
2012, Icon, Arclight — The unofficial U.K.-Australian co-production is director Stephan Elliot’s first Aussie feature since 1994 and Down Under’s wedding-disaster answer to the The Hangover. Additional British touches are provided by the writers and producers of Death at a Funeral, and Olivia Newton-John pops in as mother of the bride. (Read THR’s review of the film here.)
2012, Warner Bros. — With a massive 78 weeks scheduled for postproduction after an eight-week shoot, director Alex Proyas says he isn’t even sure the epic film about the devil’s fall from grace can be made because it’s so complex. “But we’re gonna try,” he says, with the help of a cast that includes Bradley Cooper, Benjamin Walker and Casey Affleck.
2012, Universal Pictures Australia — The co-production of L.A.-based Zucker Productions and Australia’s Story Bridge Films sees director P.J. Hogan reunite with Toni Collette 17 years after their breakout comedy Muriel’s Wedding. In the comedic tribute to The Sound of Music, Collette stars as Shaz, a nanny Hogan describes as “hilarious, outrageous, dangerous, courageous, inspiring, heartbreaking and totally, totally mad.”
Top of the Lake
2012, BBC Worldwide, ABC Commercial — Put together Oscar winners Emile Sherman, Iain Canning and Jane Campion, and the result is an unexpected mystery TV series about the disappearance of a pregnant 12-year-old set in Campion’s native New Zealand. The Australian Broadcasting Corp., the BBC and New Zealand’s TV3 have co-commissioned the series, Campion’s second.
2012, 20th Century Fox — Baz Luhrmann’s sweeping, glossy take on the American classic, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, is his most ambitious project to date. Luhrmann and Catherine Martin are re-creating the Long Island setting in his hometown of Sydney. “Fitzgerald’s story defies time and geography,” says Luhrmann.
Pictured below: “Mental”
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