First Look: Jake Ryan Fends Off Rival New Zealand Gangs in ‘Savage’

Savage Still - Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of Film Constellation

Film Constellation is repping sales on Sam Kelly's directorial debut at the AFM.

Australian actor Jake Ryan has skipped across the Tasman Sea to New Zealand for this exclusive first look from Sam Kelly’s directorial debut Savage.

The drama — inspired by the true stories of the country’s street gangs and their founding members — is among Film Constellation’s AFM lineup.

Production has now wrapped on the film, starring Ryan (The Great Gatsby, Wolf Creek), John Tui (Solo: A Star Wars Story, Battleship) and Chelsie Preston Crayford (Beyond the Known World, What We Do in the Shadows).

Written and directed by Kelly (Lambs, Darlene), Savage follows the story of Danny at three critical moments in his life that each push and pull him toward and away from gang life.

Each chapter of Savage is set in a defining time for Kiwi street gangs: from the tough state-run boy’s homes of the '60s where many members grew up; to the emerging urban gang scene in the '70s where teenagers created their own “families” and fought rivals; to the '80s when gangs became more structured, criminal and violent.

Across his lifetime, Danny searches for connection and, torn between his biological family and the gang he now calls his own, must make a choice.

Savage was financed by the New Zealand Film Commission with the support of Avalon Studio Productions, Park Road Post Productions, Film Constellation and Fulcrum Media Finance. The film is produced by Vicky Pope (Two Little Boys, Gardening with Soul). Executive Producers are Bill Trotter and William Watson.

This story first appeared in The Hollywood Reporter's Nov. 2 daily issue at the American Film Market.